A jury on Friday convicted Spaniard Jose Breton of murdering his two young children, finding that he carried out the killings as an act of revenge against his estranged wife.

The complex case, which attracted a great deal of media attention in Spain due to the mysterious circumstances surrounding it, was decided by a jury made up of seven women and two men.

The children disappeared on Oct. 8, 2011, after going to a park in the southern Spanish city of Cordoba with their father, who denied killing his six-year-old daughter Ruth and two-year-old son Jose and said he had lost track of them during the outing.

The children's mother, Ruth Ortiz, who had separated from Breton about a month before the youths went missing, has maintained that he killed them and testified in court that she had been living "with a potential murderer."

The investigation centered on bones found in the ashes of a bonfire at a rural property owned by Breton's family.

A forensic specialist initially identified them as those of animals, but other experts later determined they were children's bones. EFE