Here are Top 10 Richest Criminals in History, Their Journey Through The Shadows and Their Fortunes
While the majority of successful individuals throughout history have achieved their fortunes through legitimate means, there exists a unique subset of those who amassed vast wealth through shady dealings. In this article, we delve into the lives of the ten richest criminals of all time, exploring their illicit paths to riches, the extent of their wealth, and the shadowy legacies they've left behind.
10. Joseph Kennedy
With an estimated net worth of $400 million, Joseph Kennedy diverged from the typical political prominence associated with the Kennedy name and embarked on an unconventional path to riches by engaging in bootlegging during the Prohibition era. This venture built on his connections, amassed substantial wealth, and thrust him to criminal notoriety. Kennedy's alleged questionable strategies could have equaled the fortunes of the most infamous crime families of his time.
9. Meyer Lansky
Lansky, famously dubbed the "Mob's Accountant," occupied a central role within the illicit gambling underworld that thrived throughout the 1930s. His financial expertise propelled him to the forefront of criminal enterprises, with a staggering estimated net worth of $400 million. His close alliances with infamous mobsters granted him a seat at the table of power, while his unparalleled knack for manipulating financial systems ensured his wealth continued to surge.
8. Griselda Blanco
With an estimated net worth of $500 million, Griselda Blanco, known as the "Cocaine Queen of Miami," commanded the city's drug trade throughout the 1970s and 1980s. Notorious for her unrelenting methods, which encompassed brutal murders, she carved a fearsome reputation for herself. In a male-dominated landscape, Blanco showcased a shrewd and relentless demeanor, navigating her criminal empire with unyielding determination.
7. Anthony Salerno
Valued at around $600 million, Salerno's criminal empire gained ground in the world of gambling and loan sharking. Progressing through the ranks, he eventually secured the role of Consigliere within the Genovese crime family. Notable for his cigar-toting habit and distinctive sleepwear, Salerno amassed his substantial wealth through his complicity in numerous homicides and extensive racketeering endeavors.
6.Joaquin Loera (El Chapo)
With an estimated net worth of $1 billion, El Chapo rose to become a name synonymous with the Mexican drug trade. His deep involvement in the global narcotics scene etched his name in the annals of criminal history, and audacious prison break and subsequent recapture created ripples across the globe. In a twist that seemed straight out of a Hollywood script, El Chapo's narrative intertwined with the entertainment world when he crossed paths with none other than actor Sean Penn.
5. Susumu Ishii
After a stint in the military, Ishii made a transition to a life of crime, gaining prominence within the Inagawa-kai gang. He rose to infamy through elaborate real estate scams that yielded substantial wealth. Despite achieving immense affluence, Ishii experienced substantial setbacks in the late 1980s. Through criminal endeavors, he ultimately amassed an estimated net worth of $1.5 billion.
4. Carlos Enrique Lehder Rivas
With an estimated net worth of $2.7 billion, Lehder wielded considerable influence within the notorious Medellin Cartel. His lavish expenditures on an island retreat and a personal aircraft streamlined the cartel's drug trafficking operations, yielding billions in gains. Nonetheless, his illicit endeavors eventually resulted in a lengthy imprisonment spanning more than two decades in the United States.
3. Al Capone
Known as "Scarface," Al Capone emerged as a pivotal figure during the prohibition era. He held sway over the illicit alcohol trade in the 1920s and 1930s, accumulating a wealth exceeding a billion dollars by modern standards. Amidst his criminal pursuits, Capone's philanthropic initiatives added a layer of complexity to his legacy. His dual nature, both as a ruthless operator and a charitable contributor, epitomizes the intricate tapestry of his influence on that era's criminal landscape.
2. Pablo Escobar
Colombian druglord Pablo Escobar was notorious for leading the Medellin cartel, and possessed an estimated net worth of $25 billion. As a ruthless figure, he masterminded an extensive global cocaine distribution network, earning him the title of history's most successful drug lord. Escobar's notoriety has transcended time, inspiring the creation of books, films, and the popular TV series "Narcos," cementing his legacy as an infamous figure in the criminal underworld.
1. Amado Carrillo Fuentes
With an estimated net worth of $25 billion, Amado Carrillo Fuentes earned the moniker "The Lord of the Skies" for his drug trafficking prowess. He orchestrated a sprawling Mexican drug empire, amassing colossal wealth. Notoriously, he resorted to illegal plastic surgery to change his appearance and evade law enforcement. Fuentes utilized a fleet of 727 planes to shuttle drugs, a venture that sadly led to the deaths of many. His eventual demise was attributed to health complications, marking the end of a life marked by audacious criminal exploits.
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