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Police reject Pell call for investigation

AAP logoAAP 27/07/2016

Victoria Police have denied some of its officers leaked information to the media about an ongoing investigation into to complaints made against Australia's highest ranking Catholic Cardinal George Pell.

Cardinal Pell has called for a fresh review after ABC television on Wednesday night aired a story saying the cleric was being investigated over multiple allegations related to inappropriate behaviour involving children going back almost years.

The cardinal denies all of the allegations made by the complainants and says he's being subjected to trial by media on the back of leaking "by elements of the Victoria Police to the ABC".

Victoria Police chief commissioner Graham Ashton on Thursday denied officers had leaked information to the media.

"We haven't provided the ABC with materials and we saw that show last night it's clear the source of that information is from the victims," Mr Ashton told Melbourne radio 3AW.

"Anyone that saw the show last night, the victims, you could see their emotion, they are traumatised from what they are saying has happened to them, and are talking to the media about that."

Mr Ashton also revealed he had referred an earlier, similar complaint from Cardinal Pell to the state's Independent Broad-based Anti-Corruption Commission.

"I got a letter from Cardinal Pell some time ago regarding a complaint around that. I sent it to IBAC and IBAC had a look and wrote back to me and said they dismissed the complaint," he said.

Mr Ashton confirmed an investigation was ongoing.

"The matters raised last night are being investigated among other matters," he said.

He also said the issue was currently before the Office of Public Prosecutions and did not rule out sending officers overseas to interview Cardinal Pell.

"Anything is possible at this stage," he said.

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