|A person believed to be one of the suspects sits with their head covered |
in the back of a police car in Granada, Spain
Several suspects were arrested in November
The 12 are suspected of abusing four teenage boys between 2004 and 2007, the most serious offences occurring in a house used by the priests.
Pope Francis telephoned one of the alleged victims, now 24, in November to offer his apologies.
He acted after the man wrote him a letter about the alleged abuse.
|Pope Francis says 2% of clergy are paedophiles|
Several arrests were made in November but the suspects are now free on bail.
In November they arrested 3 priests and one layman. Obviously, the circle has grown considerably. It seems unlikely that 10 priests in one city could practice pedophilia without being somehow linked. What a disgrace for the Catholic Church if all, or even most, are found guilty.
According to Spanish broadcaster RTVE (in Spanish), the young man in question and a friend had served as altar boys in the Diocese of Granada.
|The Archbishop of Granada, Francisco Javier Martinez, and fellow priests |
prostrate themselves in front of the altar of Granada's cathedral
Following the Pope's call to the alleged victim, the Archbishop of Granada, Francisco Javier Martinez, and fellow priests prostrated themselves in front of the altar of Granada's cathedral to seek pardon for sexual abuse in the Church.
Many survivors of abuse by priests are angry at what they see as the Vatican's failure to punish senior officials who have been accused of covering up scandals.
In July, Pope Francis begged forgiveness from the victims of sexual abuse by priests, and condemned the Church's "complicity" in hiding the "grave crimes" committed by clerics.