Seen as the number-three ranked cardinal in the Vatican and a member of the pope's informal cabinet, Pell was a powerful figure in the church and one of the most prominent religious figures in Australian history.
The physically ailing Pell had previously been on bail throughout the proceedings and underwent double knee surgery in Sydney in December.
Richter has already submitted documents for appeal against the sentence, declaring the guilty verdict to be "irrational". "Cardinal Pell was the driving force. and in charge of the cathedral, and these choristers were cogs in the cathedral wheel", Gibson said. He later tweeted confirmation that Pell "is no longer" the Holy See's economy chief, but it was not immediately known if that was because Pell's 5-year appointment had expired or he had been removed from office.
But Judge Kidd pushed back, saying Pell had engaged in shocking conduct that allowed no "innocent explanation".
A court in Melbourne ordered that Cardinal Pell be taken into custody February 27; he is scheduled to be sentenced March 13 on five charges related to the sexual abuse of two 13-year-old boys in the late 1990s when he was archbishop of Melbourne.
The Vatican will open an internal investigation into Australian Cardinal George Pell following his conviction for sexually assaulting two choirboys.
Richter maintained he had to make arguments in the context of Pell's guilty conviction, and so argued that the offense Pell was convicted of, but steadfastly denies committing, was "plain vanilla sexual penetration case where the child is not actively participating".
Judge Kidd said he regarded Pell's prospects of rehabilitation as very good and believed he was unlikely to reoffend, in part because of his age.
Pell, who has lodged an appeal against the verdict, will be sentenced on March 13.
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The Vatican has also banned Pell from public ministry or having contact with children. He is expected to be sentenced in the next two weeks.
While Pell's conviction relates to abuse occurring in Melbourne, residents in Ballarat rejuvenated a campaign of tying bright ribbons on the cathedral in his hometown after the jury's findings were made public.
"I think it did involve breach of trust. he exploited two vulnerable young boys".
The victim who testified at Pell's trial said in a statement that since the conviction was revealed, he has experienced "shame, loneliness, depression and struggle".
In his statement, the man said it had taken him years to understand the impact the assault had on his life.
Two victim impact statements were presented to the hearing, one from the victim - who can not be named - who testified in Pell's trial and one from the father of the other victim who died in 2014.
The scheme has always been criticised for helping the Church limit its financial liability, and the announcement this week that its architect had himself been convicted of child sex abuse heightened the mistrust. "It spoke to his state of mind that he thought he could do this and get away with it".
Pell lawyer Paul Galbally said the cardinal had decided against applying for bail.
The former Vatican treasurer is the most senior Catholic cleric to be convicted for child sex offences.