Cardinal George Pell returns to Australia to face historical sex abuse charges

Australian Cardinal George Pell looks on as he makes a statement at the Holy See Press Office in Vatican City on June 29 after being charged with historical sex offenses. Pell has since returned to Australia to face the charges which he denies

In exclusive video obtained by 9NEWS Cardinal Pell was seen arriving at Sydney Airport flanked by several men as he walked to a waiting auto.

The Australia-born Pell is due to appear in a Melbourne court on July 26 to face the charges, which he has continued to insist he is innocent of.

Police have said the accusations relate to alleged "historical" incidents.

The former Sydney and Melbourne archbishop has always maintained his innocence and strenuously denies the allegations.

Cardinal George Pell landed in Sydney on Monday morning.

Cardinal George Pell has returned to Australia this morning under the cover of dawn, less than two weeks since he was charged with historical child sex offences.

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Pell was a priest in Australia in the '70s and '80s, and is now one of the most powerful cardinals in the Vatican, as NPR's Laurel Walmsey wrote in late June.

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Upon his arrival on Monday, the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney noted Pell's return "should not be a surprise" as Pell had said last month when he was informed of the alleged offenses in Rome that he would return to his homeland to "vigorously defend himself and clear his name".

Cardinal Pell had been heard three times in this frame and had recognized before the commission of inquiry to have "failed" in its handling of pedophile priests in the State of Victoria in the 1970s.

On Sunday, Nine broadcast video of Pell in casual attire with a companion outside an ice cream shop in Singapore. "I'm looking forward, finally, to having my day in court", he told reporters in Rome after the charges were made.

Cardinal Pell, who is usually dressed in the customary black robes of his rank, appeared to blend in with other tourists in a casual blue shirt and khaki trousers, and was pictured seated with another man at the Haagen-Daz shop.

Cardinal Pell declined to comment.

"Tell her that I am", Cardinal Pell responded.

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