Police say they have arrested a man in Spain's north-African enclave of Ceuta on suspicion of radicalizing and recruiting youth for the Islamic State group.

A statement says the detainee is a 34-year-old Spaniard, resident in Ceuta, who allegedly followed a Salafi ideology rigorously as a way of life.

Police detected several young women had traveled to Syria from Ceuta. This led them to discover the suspect working to recruit vulnerable young people, offering them help to travel to conflict areas to join IS.

The suspect's technique was to follow up an initial approach with internet communications and text messages whose function was to deepen the indoctrination process.

Police said the arrest took place early Saturday and the suspect was then flown by helicopter to a jail in Madrid.