Pablo Escobar is still among the most infamous of drug lords ever to exist. And presently, more than 20 years after his death, he is still a celebrated figure in the Medellin society and especially in the locality in which he brought the greatest of developments. Considered a Robin Hood of some sort by some, he had a particularly aggressive side.
Looking at his early years, he was a violent man from the very beginning, with his first major capital avenue being a kidnapping. It is alleged that he got his first $100,000 from kidnapping a wealthy businessman in Medellin in the 1970s. He was, before this, a gunman and small-time marijuana dealer, and having acquired the sum, he was able to invest the money in cocaine trafficking, which happened to be more lucrative than marijuana as the demand for it was just rising in the United States.
"No rich person in Colombia does anything for the poor. How can we fix inequality in our country? Steal from the rich?"This is according to Spanish Speaking World.
It is alleged that Pablo Escobar took the statement so seriously that at one time, he built an entire town for the impoverished. The following is an excerpt from the report.
"One of the most generous donations Escobar ever made was to fund the creation on an entire barrio. Word came to Pablo about 700 families who were living at the city's dump, in order to scavenge food from other people's garbage. Horrified, Escobar had a neighborhood built, at no charge for any of the residents. They named the community 'Barrio Pablo Escobar,' and it remains to this day."By the time of his death, however, Pablo Escobar's attempt to force the government into dropping an extradition clause had led to the death of approximately 4,000 people that included 1,000 policemen and 200 judges.
On what happened when he was finally eliminated, most of his assets were seized by the Colombian government and whatever money was hidden in warehouses and farms was divided amongst his close associates and hitmen. Money stashed in international bank accounts was also confiscated by the government and shared with the American government, which had helped nab him.
This left his wife and two kids with less than substantial funds to live on, and they soon fled Colombia for fear of retribution. They moved from country to country seeking asylum but were mostly declined. Soon, a deal was brokered between Argentina and Colombia to live in the former under anonymous identities.
However, it was not long until they were revealed. Maria Victoria Henao Vellejo - his wife, had changed her name to Maria Isabel Santos Caballero, while in Argentina. In 2000, she and her son Juan Pablo Escobar Henao were arrested for money laundering. Apparently, they were receiving money from drug lords in Uruguay.
They were imprisoned for 15 months but soon released because of lack of sufficient evidence. In recent times, Pablo Escobar's son has attempted to reach out to people negatively affected by his father's endeavors through a documentary titled Sins of My Father (Pecados de mi padre). According to Forbes, he once stated that he has survived 10 kidnapping attempts as a result of people trying to get their hands on his father's wealth.
[AP Photo/Luis Benavides]