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Griselda Blanco

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Cause of death

Ana Lucia Restrepo

1.52 m

Griselda Blanco

Griselda Blanco smiling while wearing a white blouse and earrings

February 15, 1943 (

September 3, 2012(2012-09-03) (aged 69), Medellin, Colombia

Other names
La Dama de la Mafia (The Lady of the Mafia )The GodmotherThe Black Widow

September 3, 2012, Medellin, Colombia

Osvaldo Trujillo, Dixon Trujillo, Michael Corleone Blanco, Uber Trujillo

Dario Sepulveda, Alberto Bravo

Similar People
Pablo Escobar, Ana Serradilla, George Jung, Carlos Lehder, Joaquin Guzman

10 facts about griselda blanco the godmother of cocaine

Griselda Blanco Restrepo (February 15, 1943 – September 3, 2012), known as La Madrina, the Black Widow, the cocaine Godmother and the Queen of Narco-Trafficking, was a Colombian drug lord of the Medellín Cartel and a pioneer in the Miami-based cocaine drug trade and underworld during the 1970s and early 1980s. It has been estimated that she was responsible for up to 200 murders while transporting cocaine from Colombia to New York, Miami and Southern California.


Griselda Blanco wearing a blue blouse


Early life

Mugshot of Griselda Blanco

Blanco was born in Cartagena, Colombia, on the country's north coast. She and her mother, Ana Lucía Restrepo, moved to Medellín when she was three years old. It didn't take long for Blanco to begin living a life of crime. Blanco's former lover Charles Cosby, recounted at the age of 11, Blanco allegedly kidnapped, attempted to ransom and eventually shot a child from an upscale flatland neighborhood near her own neighborhood. Blanco had become a pickpocket before she even turned 13. To escape the sexual assaults from her mother's boyfriend, Blanco ran away from home at the age of 14 and resorted to looting in Medellín, Colombia until the age of 20.

Drug business

Griselda Blanco smiling while wearing a white blouse, necklace, and earrings

Blanco was a major figure in the history of the drug trade from Colombia to Miami, Florida, and other states across the United States.

Mugshot of Griselda Blanco in 1997

In the mid-1970s, Blanco and her second husband Alberto Bravo immigrated to the US, settling in Queens, New York. They established a sizable cocaine business there, and in April 1975 Blanco was indicted on federal drug conspiracy charges along with 30 of her subordinates. She fled to Colombia before she could be arrested, but returned to Miami in the late 1970s.

Miami drug war

Young Griselda Blanco's headshot

Blanco's return to the US from Colombia was the beginning of the Miami drug war. This violent conflict among cocaine traffickers was associated with the high crime epidemic that swept the City of Miami in the 1980s. Law enforcement's struggle to put an end to the influx of cocaine into Miami led to the creation of CENTAC 26 (Central Tactical Unit), a joint operation between Miami-Dade Police Department and DEA anti-drug operation.

Griselda Blanco with curly hair

Blanco was involved in the drug-related violence known as the Miami Drug War or the Cocaine Cowboy Wars that plagued Miami in the late 1970s and early 1980s. This was a time when cocaine superseded marijuana trafficking. It was the lawless and corrupt atmosphere, primarily created by Blanco's operations, that led to the gangsters being dubbed the "Cocaine Cowboys" and their violent way of doing business as the "Miami drug war".

Griselda Blanco's mugshot

Her distribution network, which spanned the United States, brought in US$80,000,000 per month. Her violent business style brought government scrutiny to South Florida, leading to the demise of her organization and the free-wheeling, high-profile Miami drug scene of those times.

Griselda Blanco smiling while wearing a blue blouse and some pieces of jewelry

In 1984, Blanco's willingness to use violence against her Miami competitors or anyone else who displeased her, led her rivals to make repeated attempts to assassinate her. In an attempt to escape the hits that were called on her, she fled to California.


Griselda Blanco smiling while wearing a hat, blazer, turtle-neck blouse, and necklace

On February 20, 1985, she was arrested by DEA agents in her home and held without bail. After her trial, Blanco was sentenced to more than a decade in jail. While in prison, she continued to effectively run her cocaine business.

By pressuring one of Blanco's lieutenants, the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office obtained sufficient evidence to indict Blanco for three murders. However, the case collapsed due to technicalities relating to a telephone-sex scandal between the star witness and female secretaries in the DA's office. In 2004, Blanco was released from prison and deported to Medellin, Colombia. Before her death in 2012, the last sighting of Blanco was in May 2007 at the Bogota Airport.

Personal life

Blanco's first husband was Carlos Trujillo. Together they had three sons, Dixon, Uber, and Osvaldo, all of them poorly educated, and all of whom were killed in Colombia after being deported following prison sentences in the United States.

Her second husband was Alberto Bravo. In 1975, Blanco confronted Bravo, who was also her business partner, in a Bogotá nightclub parking lot about millions of dollars missing from the profits of the cartel they'd built together. The Guardian reports: "Blanco, then 32, pulled out a pistol, Bravo responded by producing an Uzi submachine gun and after a blazing gun battle he and six bodyguards lay dead. Blanco, who suffered only a minor gunshot wound to the stomach, recovered and soon afterwards moved to Miami, where her body count – and reputation for ruthlessness – continued to climb."

Blanco had her youngest son, Michael Corleone Blanco, with her third husband, Darío Sepúlveda. Sepúlveda left her in 1983, returned to Colombia, and kidnapped Michael when he and Blanco disagreed over who would take custody. Blanco paid to have Sepúlveda assassinated in Colombia, and her son returned to her in Miami.

According to the Miami New Times, "Michael's father and older siblings were all killed before he reached adulthood. His mom was in prison for most of his childhood and teenage years, and he was raised by his maternal grandmother and legal guardians." In 2012, Michael, was put under house arrest after a May arrest on two felony counts of cocaine trafficking and conspiracy to traffic in cocaine.

Blanco was known for her bisexual orientation. Public records, as highlighted by The New York Post, reveal Blanco's substance abuse issues, particularly with "bazooka," a crude form of smokeable cocaine. Her behavior was marked by coercing individuals into sexual acts under threat and engaging in frequent bisexual orgies. Among her treasured possessions were a unique emerald and gold MAC 10 machine pistol, pearls that once belonged to Eva Peron, and a tea set previously owned by the Queen of England. Judicial proceedings disclosed Blanco's involvement in numerous violent acts, including the murder of three of her former husbands, competitors in her line of business, and unintended victims, such as a 4-year-old child.


In the late 1980s, her lifestyle caught up to her: "Blanco - bloated, out of her wits and in poor health from decades of debauchery – turned over day-to-day management of her business to three of her sons, and tried to retire to suburban Irvine, Calif." In June 2002, the 56-year-old was in "frail health and had already had one heart attack while in prison."


On the night of September 3, 2012, Blanco died after having been shot twice in the head by a motorcyclist in Medellín, Colombia. She was shot at Cardiso butcher shop on the corner of 29th Street, after having bought $150 worth of meat; the middle-aged gunman climbed off the back of a motorbike outside the shop, entered, pulled out a gun, and shot Blanco twice in the head before calmly walking back to his bike and disappearing into the city. She was 69.


Buffalo, NY artists Westside Gunn and Conway use Blanco's name in their label, Griselda by Fashion Rebels, abbreviated as GxFR.


Blanco features prominently in the documentary films Cocaine Cowboys (2006) and Cocaine Cowboys 2 (2008; also written as Cocaine Cowboys II: Hustlin' With The Godmother).

A film titled The Godmother is currently in production, starring Catalina Sandino Morena as Blanco.

HBO is developing a film with Jennifer Lopez attached to play the notorious drug lord. The film focuses on “The Cocaine Godmother”'s rise and fall.

As of June 2017, Catherine Zeta-Jones filmed a TV Movie entitled Cocaine Godmother, a television biopic on drug lord Griselda Blanco, which will premiere in 2018 on Lifetime.


Rapper Jacki-O released a mixtape entitled Griselda Blanco, La Madrina (2010) as an ode to Blanco's lifestyle and character. Griselda Blanco's son, Michael Blanco, later gave his blessing to promote the mixtape.

Rapper Lil Kim created alter ego "Kimmy Blanco" as tribute to Blanco; Kim debuted this persona in her 2013 single of the same name.

Rapper Nicki Minaj has made references to Blanco in multiple songs, including Fetty Wap's "Like A Star" and Major Lazer's "Run Up".

Migos rapper Quavo made reference to Blanco in the song "Portland" by Drake, from Drake's More Life album.

Toronto Eastside rap duo Pengz and Two Two released the single "Griselda Blanco" in August 2017.


Blanco played a minor role in Marlon James' book A Brief History of Seven Killings (2014).

Blanco played a significant role in Jon Roberts' book American Desperado (2011).


In Comedy Central's Drunk History, season 3, episode 2 ("Miami"), Dan Harmon tells the story of the rise and fall of Blanco, starring Maya Rudolph (as Blanco), Horatio Sanz, and Joe Lo Truglio.

Gotham's Jada Pinkett Smith claims to have based her portrayal of Fish Mooney, a ruthless gang lord, on Blanco.

In the 2014 Spanish-language telenovela "La Viuda Negra," based on José Guarnizo's book "La patrona de Pablo Escobar," the role of Blanco is depicted by Ana Serradilla, a Mexican actress. This adaptation presents a dramatized portrayal of real-life events and figures associated with Pablo Escobar.


Griselda Blanco Wikipedia

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