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Dr Phil has relied heavily on the notes of a telephone conversation he had with Sue Clayton to justify his repeated sworn assertions that she did not ask him to take any action in relation to her disclosures to him about Daniels conduct.
However these notes were taken in 2002, and were made during a telephone conversation he had with Clayton when she telephoned him about the article that had penned that appeared in the national media.
O’Brien says that Aspinall’s note that says that Clayton did not ask him to take any action pertained to correcting the incorrect dates contained in his newspaper article, not to the conversation of 1992 during which she told him about Daniels and the young boys.
Dr Phil denies this furiously, swearing on a thousand bibles that his notes about not being asked to take any action – made 10 years later, and almost immediately after his article was published – were about the 1992 conversation, not about penning a correction of his ‘errors’ to the editor of the Murdoch rag.
No-one except perhaps his mother believes him.
Funnily enough it turns out that he didn’t take any action to contact the paper and correct his mistake, which fits O’Brien’s thesis precisely.
Dr Phil tries to wave it away by saying that he didn’t think the factual inaccuracies in his article were a big deal.
O’Brien rightly points out that there is a huge difference between being told when you are a young university studentabout serious misconduct involving a member of the church who just happens to be your mate, and being told about such matters when you are a priest in his 30’s.
Then Aspinall invokes the Nuremberg Defence.
He says that he was just a priest – just a priest! – and that even if Clayton had asked him to take some form of action about Daniels, there was nothing he could do other than report it to the bishop.
But he didn’t even do that.
And on this sad note Dr Phil’s evidence ends.
It’s been an action-packed day, there is doubt whatsoever about that.
I wonder who the new Archbishop of Brisbane will be?