68 cases of alleged child sex abuse connected to the Catholic Church are currently being investigated in Spain.

Attorney General, Dolores Delgado, ordered 17 regional chief prosecutors on January 31 to send her details of all current probes linked to the church.

Delgado’s office released the figures on Wednesday but no specific details were announced except for regional breakdowns.

Dolores Delgado - Revista Registradores de España
DOLORES DELGADO(La Moncloa image)

The investigations in 12 regions cover child sexual abuse in churches, other religious institutions, and Catholic schools.

The highest number of 14 cases was reported by Catalunya, followed by eight in the Madrid region.

Andalucia and Galicia declared seven probes each with six in Murcia.

Asturias, Cantabria, Extremadura, La Rioja and Navarra reported that ‘there are no criminal proceedings’ in progress over child abuse involving the Catholic Church.

In January, the Spanish Bishops’ Conference said it would set up commissions at diocese level to hear complaints from abuse victims.

They said all evidence gathered would be sent to the Vatican and appealed to victims to file complaints with the police and prosecutors.

Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, said last week that he wants Spain’s ombudsman to oversee an independent investigation after church authorities themselves chose to hush up the issue.

The El Pais newspaper handed over a dossier to Pope Francis in December cataloguing abuses of 1,237 victims by priests in Spain over a 75-year period.

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