A man in Huelva in southern Spain has been jailed for defrauding his employers out of €520,000 (£439,000) after he stole and resold 7,000 hams.
The man, who has not been named, stole the jamón from the curing warehouse where he worked over a period of six years from 2007 to 2013. Although he faced a six-year sentence, it was reduced to 11 months and 29 days because the case took so long to come to trial.
The man was in charge of taking delivery of the jamones and was responsible for them throughout the entire curing process. He then sold them on, using a messenger service to deliver them to his customers.
Huelva is famous for its jamón de jabugo, one of only a handful to be granted denominación de origen status. Each of these jamones , made from blackfoot pigs fed exclusively on acorns during the last three months of their lives, can sell for more than €500.
More than 100 of these were among the 7,000 stolen by the man. His wife was also convicted on the grounds that she was his accomplice and the two were ordered to repay €529,900 to his former employer.