Barbarin is the most senior Catholic official in France to be caught up in the global paedophilia scandal [File: Emmanuel Foudro/Reuters]

France‘s top Catholic official, Cardinal Philippe Barbarin, has been convicted for his role in a sex abuse cover-up, receiving a six-month suspended jail term.

The archbishop of Lyon, who was not in court, was found guilty on Thursday of failing to report the abuse of a minor by the Reverend Bernard Preynat between 2014 and 2015. Five other defendants were acquitted.

Barbarin, 68, is the most senior French official to be caught up in the global paedophilia scandal that

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