Pell probed after Easter visit

EXCLUSIVE:

The Victorian Government has launched an inquiry into how Cardinal George Pell was able to officiate at his own Easter service in his high-security prison cell.

A blurry mobile phone photo sent to The Bug from inside the Melbourne Assessment Prison (main picture) shows Pell in his cardinal robes hosting the service with two unidentified men believed to be visitors to the jail.

A prison source said Pell officiated at the service as if he were still an archbishop and was assisted by his two visitors.

“Pell did not seek and was not given any permission to conduct the service and the inquiry will find out how this was allowed to happen,” an angry Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said.

A prison source told The Bug the disgraced former-archbishop and convicted sex offender had settled into prison life much sooner than most in the prison administration had expected.

“It seems he is accustomed to living under an authoritarian regime and giving unquestioning obedience to instructions from above no matter how illogical they may seem,” the source told The Bug.

“Plus there’s a certain and inevitable amount of, shall we say, fraternisation among prisoners in an all-male environment cut off from the real world. Pell would have experienced that as a trainee priest many years ago.

“The other inmates are taking a while to work out how to treat him, but some have already made up their minds.

“Pell was very excited when he woke up on East Sunday to find what he thought were chocolate Easter eggs thrown into his cell. But he soon found out exactly what they were when he tried to take a bite of one.

“He is also excited about a promise by some of the other prisoners to give him a spitroast.

“I really have to remember to explain that one to him as soon as I can,” the prison source said.