BEIRUT

World

Colombia’s ‘Queen of Cocaine’ shot to death

Infamous Blanco was shot dead.

BOGOTA: Griselda Blanco, a convicted drug trafficker who was once known as the “Godmother” and the “Queen of Cocaine,” has been shot to death by an unidentified gunman, police in Colombia said Tuesday.

Col. Mauricio Cartagena of Medellin’s metropolitan police said Tuesday that the 69-year-old was killed at a butcher shop in the city Monday.

Cartagena said a man approached Blanco at the shop and fired before escaping on a motorcycle driven by another man. She died on her way to the hospital. He said the police hadn’t identified a firm motive for the killing.

“We don’t know why they killed her, but the first hypothesis would be revenge or a settling of accounts,” Cartagena said, referring to her past involvement in drug trafficking. Blanco had no charges pending against her in her native Colombia, he added.

Blanco was among the first Colombian women to traffic cocaine to the United States in the 1970s and 1980s. She had been deported back to Colombia in 2004 after serving nearly 20 years behind bars in the United States for drug trafficking and three drug-related killings.

She served three concurrent sentences after pleading no contest in 1998 to second-degree murder charges. Authorities said Blanco arranged three contract killings in 1982 that took the lives of toddler Johnny Castro, 2, and drug dealers Alfredo and Grizel Lorenzo.

The child died when bullets meant for his father, Jesus Castro, hit the boy instead, police said. She already had been serving prison time for cocaine trafficking when she entered her plea in the killings.

U.S. authorities have described Blanco as a charter member of the “cocaine cowboys” who engaged in drug trafficking, contract killings and gangland shootouts in South Florida in the 1980s. She was also once known for her love of shopping and beauty salons.

Blanco was reportedly a fan of the film “The Godfather,” naming one of her sons Michael Corleone, the name of the character played by Al Pacino in the film.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on September 06, 2012, on page 10.

Recommended

Advertisement

Comments

Your feedback is important to us!

We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.

Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.

Alert: If you are facing problems with posting comments, please note that you must verify your email with Disqus prior to posting a comment. follow this link to make sure your account meets the requirements. (http://bit.ly/vDisqus)

comments powered by Disqus

Advertisement

FOLLOW THIS ARTICLE

Interested in knowing more about this story?

Click here