Miami, Florida in the 1970s and 1980s was dominated by one woman, a cocaine empire and billions of dollars – her name was Griselda Blanco, and she ruled the city and made anyone who crossed her pay. The drug queenpin racked up more money than God, but many are wondering what happened to it all after she was finally arrested and imprisoned. 

How Much Money Did Griselda Blanco Have? 

At the height of her drug empire, the “Godmother of Cocaine” had a net worth of $2 billion, breaking into the top 10 drug lord earners of all time and even beating out Al Capone’s $1.3 billion, according to Celebrity Net Worth. She is still the only woman to make the list, and her ruthlessness allowed her sphere of influence to permeate the city of Miami. 

When she was arrested in 1985 on charges of cocaine smuggling and distribution, Griselda had a real estate portfolio worth $500 million alone. Such purchases were possible due to her booming cocaine business, which was said to be bringing her in about $80 million per month. 

What Happened to Griseldo Blanco’s Money?

Upon Griselda’s arrest, the Drug Enforcement Agency’s CENTAC (Central Tactical Program) was said to have seized a large portion of her wealth, including four of her properties amounting to $118.7 million. The arresting agent, Robert Palombo, maintained however that the drug lord had plenty of cash tucked away. 

“She has tons of money squirreled away in different bank accounts that were never recovered,” Agent Palombo told Maxim at the time. 

After her release from prison in 2004, Griselda was deported to Colombia, but she certainly still enjoyed elements of her wealth from her past life as a drug lord. 

“Poor? Listen to this: you and I are poor,” a police officer told El Pais about Griselda’s money following her time behind bars. “She went around driving her mazdita [a black Mazda 6] and collecting the money from the leases on the properties she still owned. She was also selling a building for 1,500 million pesos.”

What Happened to Griselda Blanco? 

While leaving a butcher shop in September 2012, Griselda was shot in the head twice by two mystery assailants on a motorcycle. The queenpin’s assassination quickly hit the headlines not only because of its monumental impact, but due to its style – Griselda herself perfected the motorcycle drive-by killing tactic while in Miami. She was 69 years old. 

Griselda is buried in the  Jardines de Montesacro cemetery, a short distance from Pablo Escobar.

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