Pablo Escobar is perhaps the most notorious drug lord of the modern era. He ran the Medellin Cartel which imported billions of dollars of cocaine into the United States. Pablo’s money brought him great power as we was able to bribe officials or have them killed if they wouldn’t take his bribes. Forbes Magazine named Escobar the 7th richest man in the world with a net worth of $25 Billion. In 1993, Escobar was killed by Colombian forces with US assistance, after he escaped from a Colombian prison.
Nicky Barnes started using heroin at a tender age. It was later to dawn on him that he would make a fortune from selling than buying. For a long time, Barnes managed to avoid the police’s dragnet by enrolling them in his payroll. Having established himself as ‘Mr. Untouchable’, Barnes infuriated the police who forced/ordered the DEA to arrest and bring Barnes to face justice. Although he received a life imprisonment, Barnes got out in 1998 and turned over a new leaf.
As the founder and a major component in the Guadalajara Cartel, Rafael Caro Quintero made over $650 million. In the course of this business, he murdered several people including a pilot and a federal agent. He was arrested and charged with murder in 1985 and released in 2013. According to Interpol, Caro Quintero is one of the most wanted men globally. The USA and Mexico governments would love to have him arrested and charged with drug dealership.
With a net worth of $1 Billion, Joaquín Guzmán Leora ranks 5th in the list. Being the leader of Sinaloa Drug Cartel, a criminal organization, this Mexican drug trafficker supplies heroine, cocaine, and marijuana between the United States of America and Mexico. Having been listed as Mexico’s tenth richest man in 2011, Joaquín Guzmán Leora’s drug network stretches between US and Colombia. Forbes branded him ‘The Biggest Drug Lord Ever.’ He was arrested in 2014.
Griselda Blanco had learned the ropes of her business in her early years. In fact, at age 11, Griselda had abducted a child, demanded ransom and later on shot him in the head, killing him instantly. She was the most dreaded gangster Miami witnessed in the 1970’s and 1980’s. Popularly referred to as ‘The Cocaine Godmother’, this Colombian drug trafficker was an unparalleled pioneer in the illegal cocaine trade in Miami. She earned her net worth of $2 Billion by serving as a leader of the Medellin Cartel. She was alleged to have murdered her three husbands, besides engaging men in sex at gunpoint. She was gunned down in 2012.
Carlos Lehder- As one of the most influential and founding members of the Medellin cartel, this German-Colombian drug dealer boasts of $2.7 billion net worth. Carlos amassed his wealth from Quintin Lame Movement as well as the cocaine Transport Empire. He was extremely instrumental in bringing cocaine to South Florida from where it was dispatched to various destinations within the US. His arrest in Connecticut for car theft at a tender age is a pointer that Carlos knew what he wanted in life – money.
Freeway Rick Ross- From his sale of crack cocaine, Freeway Rick Ross made over $600 million. In the 1980s crack was a fast selling commodity and Rick Ross took advantage of this and made it big time. He was arrested in 1996 and released in 2009.
Frank Lucas is a proud retired drug dealer who made millions in his game. He is one of the 11 richest drug dealers of all time, having made over $50 million from smuggling heroin into the US. It sounds strange and unbelievable that Frank Lucas would shove heroin into dead American soldiers’ coffins to unsuspectingly get them into the US. The movie ‘American Gangster’ is based on him.