Drug Lords- they are an interesting section of people who deserves all the attention they get, their minds worth studying, their life worth exploring. So seem to think the makers of movies like American Gangster and Blow. After all, not everyone have the nerve to buy drugs from a federal agent or the luxury to burn two million dollars in cash to keep warm!
Let’s have a look at the ten most notorious drug lords of all times ..
10. Nicky Barnes
Leroy Antonio ‘Nicky’ Barnes, born October 15, 1933, is a former drug lord and the leader of the infamous African-American crime organization The Council, which during the 1970s controlled the heroin trade in Harlem, New York. Barnes’ character as notorious Drug Lord Frank Lucas’ competitor was portrayed by Cuba Gooding Jr. in the 2007 film American Gangster. Barnes was arrested in 1977. His net worth until then had peaked at $105 million.
9. Jose Figueroa Agosto
Jose David Figueroa Agosto, born June 28, 1964, San Juan, Puerto Rico, is one of the Caribbean region’s most wanted and biggest reputed drug lords. He was the most wanted fugitive by Puerto Rican and Dominican Republic authorities. He escaped from prison in 1999 where he was serving a 209-year sentence for murder and illegal weapon possession. He is rumoured to have paid off police to remain free. After his escape, he obtained several alternate identities and continued drug trafficking. Jose was the richest drug dealer in the Caribbean until his arrest in July 2010 – DEA, FBI, US Marshals and Puerto Rican police seized him in Santurce, a neighborhood in San Juan, as he tried to escape from officers conducting surveillance.
8. Khun Sa
Khun Sa is popularly known as ‘The Opium King’. It is said that in the 1960s, Khun Sa took an army of 800 men into the jungles of Burma to cultivate opium, forming ‘The Golden Triangle’. Ultimately, Khun Sa was supplying 75% of the world’s heroin supply. Like many other drug lords, he made it to the film American Gangster as the world’s largest opium producer. Khun Sa was never arrested. He died in 2002.
7. Paul Lir Alexander
Paul Lir Alexander, also known as ‘The Baron of Cocaine’ is a Brazilian smuggler well known for his connections with the CIA and DEA. He has reportedly used this connection to bring down his enemies and boost his own operations. He has been reported to have smuggled cocaine into the US while he was collaborating with the US DEA in their investigation of other smugglers. He was arrested in 1993 and served 12 years in a US federal prison until he escaped during a work release program.
6. George Jung
George Jung, also known as ‘Boston George’ is a drug lord who played a huge role in the cocaine trade in the 1970’s and 80’s. He along with his gang invented the marketplace for Cocaine in the US during that time. He was responsible for transporting 90% of America’s cocaine supply directly from well known drug lord Pablo Escobar. At the peak of his dealing career, he was believed to be earning $15 million per drug run. A movie named Blow was made on him where his character was portrayed by Johnny Depp.
5. Rick Ross
Rick Ross, nicknamed ‘Freeway’ Ricky Ross, born January 26, 1960, was the most powerful drug trafficker in Los Angeles in the 1980s. During the height of his drug dealing, Ross was believed to have made $2 million in a day. In 1998, as part of the Iran-Contra scandal, Ross was sentenced to life imprisonment; he was convicted of purchasing cocaine from a federal agent. However, Ross’s case went before the federal court of appeals where his sentence was reduced. He was released in 2009.
4. Amando Carrillo Fuentes
Amando, born on December 17, 1956 in Navolato, Mexico was the top drug trafficker in Mexico. The DEA described him as the most powerful drug trafficker of his era- the late 80s and early 90s.He is known as ‘The Lord of the Skies’ because he owned a fleet of private aircrafts which he used to transport cocaine. Fuentes became head of Juarez drug cartel after he murdered his former mentor and boss Rafael Aguilar Guajardo. He died in 1997 and spent his final years being hunted by American DEA agents and Mexican anti-drug police.
3. Joaquín Guzmán Loera
He is considered a folk hero in the narcotics world and is celebrated by musicians. Los Traviezos recorded a ballad eulogizing his life on the run.
Also known as Shorty Guizmán, Loera is the leader of the Sinaloa Cartel, the most powerful drug cartel in the world. He is regarded as the biggest drug lord in history by the DEA. Jaoquin was arrested in 1993 but escaped a few years later. He was jailed in 2001 and placed in a maximum security prison, but got away again by hiding in a laundry van. Loera was arrested again in February 2014. In 2009, Forbes magazine listed him as one of the 50 richest and most powerful people in the world.
2. Frank Lucas
Frank Lucas, nicknamed ‘Superfly’ is a former heroin dealer who operated in Harlem during the 1960s and 1970s. He is known for buying his heroin straight from his source in the Golden Triangle and importing them in the caskets of fallen soldiers. He reportedly bragged about smuggling drugs in the coffins of deceased American servicemen. At the peak of his dealing career, Lucas was believed to be making close to $1 million per day. The 2007 Denzel Washington film American Gangster was based on the life of Frank Lucas.
1. Pablo Escobar
Referred to as ‘The World’s Greatest Outlaw’, Escobar is a legend in the world of crime. ‘Pablo, born December 1, 1949, was the head of the Columbian Medellin Cartel that deals majorly in Cocaine. He is considered the most notorious drug lords of all time. In his time, he had murdered more than 3,000 people including police officers, judges and had also once bombed a flight. He has many interesting stories like the one where he burnt two million dollars in cash to keep himself warm while on the run. In 1986, he even attempted to enter Colombian politics, offering to pay off the nation’s $10 billion national debt. In 1989, Forbes magazine listed Escobar as the seventh richest man in the world. Escobar was killed in 1993 in Colombia by the Search Bloc, a group of Colombian police devoted to capturing him.