Pablo Escobar Net Worth at Death – Salary, Income, Wife

Pablo Escobar Net Worth

Pablo Escobar had an estimated net worth of $30 billion at death. Pablo Emilio Escobar Gaviria, also known as the “King of Cocaine,” was a notorious Colombian drug lord. He was regarded as the most egregious, powerful, and wealthy criminal in the history of cocaine trafficking. He formed the ‘Medellin Cartel,’ along with other criminals, to ship cocaine to the American market.

During the 1970s and 1980s, Pablo Escobar and the ‘Medellin Cartel’ had a near-monopoly in the cocaine smuggling business in the United States, shipping more than 80% of all drugs smuggled into the country. He made billions of dollars, and by the early 1990s, his net worth was estimated to be $30 billion. When money buried in various parts of Colombia is included, the earnings total around $100 billion.

In 1989, Forbes listed him as the world’s seventh wealthiest person. With his fortune, he lived a lavish lifestyle. His empire included 400 luxury mansions around the world, private planes, and a private zoo with exotic animals. He also had his own army of trained soldiers and criminals.

While his vast empire was built on murders and crimes, he was known for supporting soccer clubs and charitable organizations.

To calculate the net worth of Pablo Escobar, subtract all his liabilities from his total assets. Investments, savings, cash deposits, and any equity he has in a house, car, or other similar asset are included in the total assets.

All debts, such as personal loans and mortgages, are included in total liabilities. 

Here’s the breakdown of his net worth:

Name: Pablo Escobar
Net Worth: $30 Billion
Monthly Salary: $1 Million
Annual Income: $40 Million
Source of Wealth: Drug lord

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Early Life

Pablo Escobar was born on December 1, 1949, in Rionegro, Colombia, as the third of seven children to Abel de Jess Dari Escobar and Hermilda Gaviria. His father was a farmer, and his mother was a kindergarten teacher.

His criminal activities began in his teens on the streets of Medellin, when he used to steal gravestones and sand them before selling them to smugglers. Reberto Escobar, his brother, on the other hand, claimed that the stones came from owners of those cemeteries whose clients had failed to pay for site care and that one of Escobar’s relatives was in the monument business.

He briefly attended the ‘Universidad Autónoma Latinoamericana de Medelln.’

He had a strong desire since childhood to become a millionaire by the age of 22. His criminal activities included selling fake lottery tickets, stealing cars, selling contraband cigarettes, and running petty street scams with Oscar Bernal Aguirre.

In the early 1970s, he worked as a bodyguard and thief, kidnapping a Medellin executive for $100,000. His next step up in the criminal world was to work with contraband smuggler Alvaro Prieto.

Criminal Career

Roberto Escobar discussed how an obscure and simple middleclass person like Pablo Escobar rose to become one of the richest men in the world in his book ‘The Accountant’s Story: Inside the Violent World of the Medelln Cartel.’

As Pablo Escobar’s accountant, Roberto Escobar used to keep track of all the money he earned. When the ‘Medellin Cartel’ was smuggling 15 tons of cocaine per day to the United States, worth over $500 million, Pablo and his brother spent $1000 per week on rubber bands to wrap the cash bundles. Every year, about 10% of the money stored in their warehouses was lost due to rat spoilage.

Pablo Escobar first became involved in the drug trade in the 1970s, and his cocaine operation began in 1975. He used to fly a plane between Colombia and Panama to smuggle drugs to the United States.

He and his men were arrested in 1975 after returning to Medellin from Ecuador with a heavy load. They were found to be in possession of 39 pounds of white paste. He failed to bribe the judges in his case and later killed the two arresting officers, resulting in the dismissal of his case. He soon began using his bribery or murder tactics to deal with the authorities.

Previously, he used to smuggle cocaine in old plane tires, and a pilot would be paid $500,000 per flight. Later, as demand increased in the United States, he arranged for additional shipments as well as alternative routes and networks, including California and South Florida.

He created Norman’s Clay in the Bahamas as a new island trans-shipment point in collaboration with Carlos Lehder. Between 1978 and 1982, this was the main smuggling route for the Medellin Cartel.’

Pablo Escobar spent several million dollars to buy 7.7 square miles of land, including his estate ‘Hacienda Napoles.’

In the mid-1980s, he was at the pinnacle of his power, smuggling approximately 11 tons of cocaine per flight to the United States. Pablo Escobar, according to Roberto Escobar, also used two remote-controlled submarines to smuggle cocaine.

In 1982, he was elected as an alternate member to Colombia’s Chamber of Representatives by the ‘Colombian Liberal Party.’ He officially represented the Colombian government at Felipe Gonzalez’s inauguration ceremony in Spain.

Escobar was also accused of supporting the left-wing guerrillas of the ’19th April Movement’ (M-19), who stormed the Colombian Supreme Court in 1985. Many of the court’s judges were murdered, and files and papers were destroyed, all while the court was debating Colombia’s extradition treaty with the United States. The treaty would have allowed Colombia to extradite drug lords to the US for prosecution.

He became infamous around the world as his network grew and gained notoriety. By that time, the ‘Medellin Cartel’ controlled a large portion of drug trafficking in the United States, Spain, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Puerto Rico, and other European and American countries. Rumours circulated that his network extended all the way to Asia.

His approach to dealing with the Colombian system, which included intimidation and corruption, was dubbed ‘plata o plomo.’ In his dictionary, it literally means’silver or lead,’ but it meant either accept’money’ or face ‘bullets.’ His criminal activities included the assassination of hundreds of state officials, civilians, and police officers, as well as the bribery of politicians, judges, and government officials.

By 1989, his ‘Medellin Cartel’ controlled 80% of the global cocaine market. He was widely assumed to be the main financier of the Colombian football team ‘Medelln’s Atlético Nacional.’ He was also credited with the development of multi-sports courts, football fields, and the assistance of a children’s football team.

Despite being considered an enemy of both the Colombian government and the United States, he was successful in fostering goodwill among the poor. He was instrumental in the construction of schools, churches, and hospitals in western Colombia, as well as the donation of funds for poor housing projects. He was well-liked in the local Roman Catholic Church, and Medellin residents frequently assisted and protected him, even hiding him from authorities.

His empire grew so powerful that other drug smugglers gave him 20% to 35% of their profit in exchange for the smooth shipment of their cocaine to the United States.

He was accused of assassinating Colombian presidential candidate Luis Carlos Galan in 1989. He was also charged with the bombings of Bogota’s ‘DAS Building’ and Avianca Flight 203.

Following the assassination of Luis Carlos Galan, the Cesar Gavitis-led administration took action against him. The government persuaded him to surrender in exchange for a reduced sentence and preferential treatment while incarcerated.

He surrendered to the Colombian government in 1991 and was held in La Catedral, which had been converted into a private luxurious prison. Before he surrendered, the newly approved Colombian Constitution, which was suspected of being influenced by Escobar and other drug mafias, prohibited extradition of Colombian citizens.

After discovering that Pablo Escobar was conducting his criminal activities from La Catedral, the government attempted to transfer him to a more conventional jail in July 1992. However, he learned of the plan through his influence and managed to flee in time.

In 1992, the US ‘Joint Special Operations Command’ and ‘Centra Spike’ began a joint hunt for him. They trained a special Colombian task force called ‘Search Bloc’ for this purpose.

Los Pepes (Los Perseguidos por Pablo Escobar, “People Persecuted by Pablo Escobar”), a vigilante group aided by Pablo Escobar’s rivals and former associates, carried out a bloody carnage. This resulted in the deaths of approximately 300 Escobar relatives and associates, as well as the destruction of a large amount of his cartel’s property.

Through intelligence sharing, the ‘Search Bloc,’ Colombian and US intelligence agencies, and ‘Los Pepes’ coordinated to bring down Escobar and his remaining few allies.

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Personal Life & Wife

In March 1976, Pablo Escobar married Maria Victoria. Juan, now known as Juan Sebastián Marroqun Santos, and Manuela Escobar were the couple’s two children.

After a fifteen-month manhunt by the ‘Search Bloc,’ Colombian and US intelligence agencies, and the ‘Los Pepes,’ he was discovered and shot by the ‘Colombian National Police’ on December 2, 1993. It is still unknown who shot him in the head, as Escobar’s relatives believe he shot himself to death.

Around 25,000 people attended his funeral, including the majority of Medellin’s poor, who he helped greatly. His ashes are interred at Itagui’s ‘Cemetario Jardins Montesacro.’


Under the law of ‘extinción de dominio,’ the government expropriated his luxurious estate ‘Hacienda Napoles,’ the unfinished Greek-style citadel, and the zoo during the 1990s and handed them over to low-income families. The property was transformed into a theme park, complete with four luxury hotels, a zoo, and a tropical park.

Pablo Escobar has inspired numerous books, films, television shows, documentaries, music, and even video games.

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Pablo Escobar Quotes

“Dirty money is in all economic sectors of the country.” – Pablo Escobar


“I’ll never surrender.” – Pablo Escobar


“There can only be one king.” – Pablo Escobar


“I prefer to be in the grave in Colombia than in a jail cell in the United States.” – Pablo Escobar


“The purpose of war is peace.” – Pablo Escobar


“The thing about war is, it’s just bad for business. And when you got a bull’s eye on your back, your rivals get bold.” – Pablo Escobar


“Dirty money is in all economic sectors of the country.” – Pablo Escobar


“There’s cash buried everywhere. The guerillas, the paramilitary, the narcos… Everybody’s burying cash.” – Pablo Escobar


“All empires are created by blood and fire.” – Pablo Escobar


“I am Pablo Emilio Escobar Gaviria. My eyes are everywhere. That means you guys can’t move a finger in all of Antioquia without me knowing about it. Do you understand? Not a finger. One day, I’m going to be president of the Republic of Colombia. So look, I make deals for a living. Now, you can stay calm and accept my deal, or accept the consequences.” – Pablo Escobar


“I’m sometimes accused of drug trafficking. It’s an activity that for the time being, historically, shall we say has been declared illegal. It’s illegal at the moment, but in the long run and in the future, we’re going to show that it will head toward legalization.” – Pablo Escobar


“I’ll die before I ever leave Colombia again.” – Pablo Escobar


“Sometimes I feel like God…when I order someone killed – they die the same day.” – Pablo Escobar

View our larger collection of the best Pablo Escobar quotes.

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