A retired American soldier has been arrested in El Puerto de Santa Maria in Cadiz Province on historic child sex abuse charges lodged in the United States.

The Policia Nacional detained the man on March 11 when he left his home accompanied by his wife.

News of the arrest was only made public today(March 18).

It was regarded as a priority case by the US Diplomatic Security Service in Madrid.

They picked up some crucial intelligence about his whereabouts and passed it to the ENFAST Network, which tracks down fugitives across Europe.

They in turn informed the Policia Nacional who launched an operation to detain the American national.

The former soldier is accused of abusing a six-year-old girl who he and his wife fostered in 2002.

The child was continually assaulted at her Florida home until she left when she turned 18.

The victim told the police that the abuse worsened from when she was 12-years-old as her foster father forced her to have sex several times a month.

Formal extradition proceedings have now been launched to bring the man back to the States.

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