A Catholic priest who sexually abused a boy has been sentenced to 7 years and 9 months in prison by the Murcia Provincial Court.

Antonio LZ met the youngster in San Pedro del Pinatar when he was a junior priest at the local church.

He got to know the child’s family and worked in the area between 2006 and 2013.

The priest built up a strong relationship with them which extended to staying in their home.

When he was promoted and given his own parish in the inland town of Yecla in 2013, the boy, who had turned 13, frequently travelled 140 kilometres to stay with him.

The priest gave him many gifts during a process of grooming and would invite him over for meals.

Sexual abuse took place which impacted on the youngster’s progress at school, along with his mental and emotional state.

Years later as a young man, the victim told another priest what happened and the Diocese of Cartagena brought the matter to the attention of the Prosecutor’s Office.

The whole case revolved around the man’s testimony at the trial, which the judges described as ‘totally credible’ and without ‘any contradictions’.

Beside the prison sentence, Antonio LZ, has been given a five-year order to stay away from the man, once he’s freed from jail.

He’s been given five years of probation and a similar time ban on any job that has contact with children.

The errant priest will also have to pay his victim €30,000 in compensation.

Two other child sex abuse cases dating back to his time at San Pedro del Pinatar have yet to be heard.


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