Former Wollongong Bishop PHILIP WILSON will be a free man after a judge quashed his conviction for covering up child abuse at the hands of a Hunter region priest.
But a second appeal could be in the works.
Newcastle District Court judge Roy Ellis on Thursday upheld Wilson's appeal against his conviction saying there was reasonable doubt the clergyman had committed the crime.
Judge Ellis said suspicion was not a substitute for proof beyond reasonable doubt.
Judge Ellis also threw out an appeal by the Director of Public Prosecutions against the leniency of the original sentence.
Sixty-eight-year-old Wilson who had served almost four months in home detention at his sister's home, was allowed to watch the judge hand down his decision via video link from a remote location so he didn't have to face the media.
Photo: AAP Image/Darren Pateman