009 - PTB Discusses Griselda Blanco, Cocaine Cowgirls, Mean Girls and The Drug Trade in the 1970's
Born in Columbia in 1943. She was raised in an abusive situation, her step father abused her and she grew up in the slums. At 11 years old she joined a gang. The gang captured a 10 year old boy and his family refused to pay the ransom for him so Blanco killed him on a dare.
At age 14 she moved out of her family’s home and became a prostitute. This is how she met her first husband. She divorced him and married her second husband.
Her second husband, Alberto Bravo, was involved in the drug cartel, getting her involved. Blanco helped and was known for her creative ways of smuggling drugs, like hiding coke in lingerie and having women wear it on airplanes.
Blanco and her second husband were busted a joint NYPD/DEA sting called Operation Banshee. It was the largest sting to have occurred at that time. Because of that, she left Florida and returned to Columbia to avoid jail time.
Later that year, she thought her husband was stealing money from her. This resulted in a shootout between the two of them. She pulled out a gun and shot her second husband, killing him.
In the late 1970’s she moved back to Fl and met and married her third husband, Dario Sepulveda. She was also trying to solidify her hold on the local drug trade and plunged the city into a drug war known as the Cocaine Cowboy Wars.
She smuggled more than three tons of cocaine into the United States annually, netting some $80 million per month.
In 1984 Blanco moved to CA. In 1985 she was arrested for drug crimes. She received the maximum sentence of 15 years in prison, though she reportedly continued to run her empire/ She was also implicated in 200 murders but there wasn’t enough evidence to convict her until one of her top hit men, Jorge Ayala turned on her and agreed to testify against her. At this point, she was charged with 3 murders.
While she was awaiting trial, Charles Cosby, an Oakland crack dealer, contacted her to help her however he could. Blanco took him up on the offer and during one visit slipped him a note that read “jfk 5m ny.” She wanted him to organize the kidnapping of John F. Kennedy Jr in New York and hold him in exchange for her release. The kidnappers would receive $5 million for their trouble. Supposedly, the kidnappers came close to pulling it off. They managed to surround Kennedy while he was out walking his dog but an NYPD squad car passed by and scared them off.
The state sought death penalty but Ayala’s credibilty was undermined when it was revealed that he had been having phone sex with secretaries in the prosecuting attorney’s office
In 1998 Blanco ultimately pled guilty in exchange for a reduced sentence, and six years later, in 2004, she was released and deported to Colombia. Blanco reportedly retired from a life of crime, but in 2012 she was assassinated by a gunman on a motorcycle as she left a butcher shop in Medellín.