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Cardinal George Pell Due Back In Court For A Second Time

Cardinal George Pell is due to face court for a second time as the highest-ranking Catholic official to be charged with sexual abuse.

The third most senior Vatican official's case is due back in the Melbourne Magistrates Court on Friday for a committal mention.

Pell is expected to again appear in person for what will be a short administrative hearing.

A number of issues may be canvassed including what witnesses will be called to give evidence at a subsequent committal hearing.

The magistrate may set a date for the committal hearing, which is likely to be held in early 2018.

It is at the committal hearing that a magistrate will decide if there is enough evidence for the case to go to trial in the Victorian County Court.

Pell, 76, does not have to enter a formal plea unless he is committed to stand trial.

He will plead not guilty to all charges, his high-profile barrister Robert Richter QC told the cardinal's first court appearance on July 26.

Police helped Pell through a 100-strong crush of national and international media as he walked the 100 metres between his barrister's office and the court's main entrance for the brief filing hearing.

Victoria Police Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton in July said police would consider taking Pell through an underground door to the court complex next time.

The former Sydney and Melbourne archbishop and Ballarat priest has taken leave from his position as Vatican treasurer to return to Australia to defend himself.

AAP

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