A convicted Spanish paedophile who was freed upon royal pardon in Morocco has been re-arrested in his home country.

Spain's Interior Ministry said police have arrested Daniel Galvan Vina, 64, in the southeastern city of Murcia.

Galvan was sentenced to 30 years in jail in 2011 by a court in the city of Kenitra, 40km north of Rabat, for the rape of 11 children aged between 3 and 15.

He was granted a royal pardon by King Mohamed VI last week, along with more than 1,000 prisoners, including 48 Spaniards.

The release sparked mass protests in the Moroccan capital. At least 63 people were injured as demonstrators trying to stage a sit-in in front of the parliament clashed with police.

The king swiftly revoked the pardon, saying it was a mistake, and sacked the head of prisons.

Rabat subsequently issued an international arrest warrant, demanding Galvan be sent back to Morocco. Galvan is now to be brought before the National Court in Madrid.

It was initially believed that Galvan was freed on the request of Spain's King Juan Carlos, who, during an official visit to Rabat in July, had asked his Moroccan counterpart to free another Spanish convict suffering from health problems and to be magnanimous with all Spaniards serving time in Moroccan jails.

However, according to Moroccan newspaper La Kome, Galvan's release was actually born of pressure from Spain's secret services, as he is a former spy.

A Spanish official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Galvan was on a list of 30 Spanish prisoners in Morocco whose repatriation had been requested by Madrid. However his name somehow ended up in a broader list of Spaniards to be pardoned on the anniversary of King Mohamed's coronation, drawn up by Rabat.