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What happened to Gabriel March Granados? A mailman's dark prison story

Daniel Munro April 29, 2022
What happened to Gabriel March Granados? A mailman's dark prison story

A famous internet fact no one ever quite believes is the story of Spanish mailman Gabriel March Granados. If you’re not familiar with the tale, he was a postman who got in a little trouble with the Spanish authorities in the 1970s. But who is Gabriel March Granados, and is his story true?

Who had the longest-ever prison sentence?

We’ve all heard of judges handing out eye-watering sentences. All over the world, it’s not uncommon for some people found guilty to be sentenced to spells inside that would inevitably extend beyond their own life expectancy.

Some of the longest prison sentences ever will blow your mind, though.

In 2017, for example, a Thai man was sent down for a remarkable 13,725 years for running a fraud scheme.

Two of the men involved in the 2004 Madrid train bombings were even sentenced to more than 40,000 years each.

Prosecutors, however, wanted Gabriel March Granados to serve a longer sentence than all of them combined. But is it true? Who is Granados, and what did he actually do?

The bizarre story of mailman Gabriel March Granados

Gabriel March Granados managed just two years as a postman in Spain before things took a turn for the worse.

The story goes that in 1970 he was pulled up by the Mallorca post office regarding suspicions over his work. In 1972 he was reported to the Spanish courts for a remarkable set of 42,768 charges.

It transpired Gabriel March Granados had intercepted no less than 42,768 letters he was meant to deliver. In doing so, the sneaky postman had pocketed a total of about €50,000 (£42,000 / $53,000) in today’s money.

So how long was he sentenced for? Well, the prosecutor didn’t want Granados to get away with a slap on the wrist. They proposed the postman was sentenced to a whopping 384,912 years, which worked out at nine years behind bars for each undelivered letter.

Moreover, the prosecutor proposed Granados was ordered to pay back 380 times the amount he stole from the letters, a fee that equates to about €19 million in 2022.

Has he been released?

Had the judge granted this sentence, Gabriel March Granados would have been handed the longest sentence of all time. However, the Spanish courts were slightly more forgiving than the prosecutors.

In the end, he was sentenced only to the crimes of infidelity, resulting in a total sentence of 14 years and two months plus a small fine.

Given this was in 1972, that would mean Gabriel March Granados was released from prison in 1980 at the latest. However, there’s no official information about what happened to Granados following his sentencing.

Let’s hope he isn’t delivering your mail!

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I'm a second-year student at The University of Strathclyde, studying Politics and International Relations with Journalism. I'm a keen writer, with a range of interests across many topics including entertainment, music and sports. My finger is always on the pulse and I pride myself on being up to date on the latest news and trending topics.