The top 20 richest gangsters of all time: How much are/were they worth?

The top 20 richest gangsters of all time: How much are/were they worth?

Who are the richest gangsters of all time? There have been many wealthy criminals throughout history. Some of the wealthiest include drug lords like Pablo Escobar and Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán, who made billions of dollars through their illegal drug operations. Other wealthy criminals include fraudsters like Bernard Madoff and embezzlers like Allen Stanford, who stole millions of dollars from their victims. Some of these criminals were eventually caught and sentenced to prison, while others were able to evade justice and live lavish lifestyles.

Richest gangsters
Photo: @Keith, @Michael, @Eugene at Getty (modified by author)
Source: UGC

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Most gang members are unconcerned about the repercussions of their actions as long as the monetary reward is sufficient. Some presume that crime pays, even though the chances of survival are extremely slim.

The top 20 wealthiest gangsters of all time

While figuring out the precise fortune of these gangsters is incredibly difficult, the following are some of the wealthiest yet most terrible criminals who are regarded as the richest gangsters of all time.

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1. Leona Roberts Helmsley – $5 billion

Richest gangsters
Actress Tovah Feldshuh attends the "Queen Of The Mean: The Rise And Fall Of Leona Helmsley" Play Reading at the Actors Temple Theatre in New York City. Photo: Steven A Henry
Source: Getty Images

Leona Roberts Helmsley was the richest criminal in the world. She was a businesswoman from the United States. Her ostentatious character and reputation for tyranny earned her the moniker 'Queen of Mean.'

In 1989, Helmsley was probed and found guilty of three counts of tax evasion and several other crimes following accusations of lack of payment by contractors recruited to modify her Connecticut home. She died on 20 August 2007 at the age of 87. Her net worth as of 2007 was $5 billion.

2. Carlos Lehder – $2.7 billion

Richest gangsters
Le trafiquant de coca*ne Carlos Lehder en 1986 en Colombie. C'est l'un des caids du cartel de Medellin dirigé par Pablo Escobar. Arrêté il fut extradé aux Etats-Unis. Photo: Eric VANDEVILLE
Source: Getty Images

Carlos Enrique Lehder Rivas was born on 7 September 1949. He is 73 years old as of 2022. He is an erstwhile drug lord of German-Colombian origin and a co-founder of the Medellin Cartel. He was freed from jail in the United States in 2020 after serving a 33-year sentence.

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He founded the National Latin Movement, a neo-N*zi political party whose primary purpose was to force Colombia to abandon its extradition agreement with the U.S. Carlos has an estimated net worth of $2.7 billion as of 2022.

3. Adnan Khashoggi – $2 billion

Richest gangsters
Businessman Adnan Khashoggi at his desk in his office at Olympic Tower in New York, USA 1986. Photo: Wolfgang Kuhn
Source: Getty Images

Adnan Khashoggi was born on 25 July 1935 in Mecca. He was a famous businessman and arms dealer, well-known for his extravagant business dealings and lifestyle. His net worth was estimated to be around $4 billion in the early 1980s. He died on 6 June 2017 at the age of 81. He had an estimated net worth of $2 billion at his death.

4. Griselda Blanco – $2 billion

Griselda Blanco Restrepo, also famous as the Black Widow, was a Colombian drug lady who worked for the Medellín Cartel and the Miami coca*ne drug trade and underworld from the 1970s to the early 2000s. She was shot and killed on 3 September 2012 at 69. She had an estimated net worth of $2 billion as of 2012.

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5. Frank Costello – $1 billion

Richest gangsters
Franko Costello. Photo: @historiadelamafia
Source: Instagram

He was an Italian-American criminal mastermind of the Luciano crime family. In 1957, Costello escaped an attempted murder instructed by Vito Genovese and conducted by Vincent Gigante.

The quarrel convinced Costello to give up power to Genovese and leave the profession. He passed away on 18 February 1973. His net worth as of 1973 was estimated to be $1 billion.

6. Joaquín Guzmán Loera – $1 billion

Richest gangsters
Joaquin Guzman. Photo: @truecrimetabletalk
Source: Instagram

Joaquin Archivaldo Guzmán Loera, also known as El Chapo, was born on 4 April 1957. He is 65 years old as of 2022. Joaquin is an erstwhile Mexican drug lord and commander of the Sinaloa Cartel, an international crime syndicate. He is widely recognised as one of the world's most influential drug smugglers.

He assisted Salazar in mapping drug routes via Sinaloa and into the United States. He later oversaw logistics for Miguel Angel Félix Gallardo, one of the country's most powerful kingpins in the mid-1980s, but after Gallardo's arrest in 1988, Guzmán formed his cartel. His net worth is estimated to be $1 billion as of 2022.

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7. Carlo Gambino – $400 million

Richest gangsters
Headshot of Italian gangster Carlo Gambino. Photo: Hulton Archive
Source: Getty Images

Carlo Gambino was an Italian-American gang leader of the Gambino crime family. He succeeded the American Mafia Commission after the Apalachin Meeting in 1957 and the incarceration of Vito Genovese in 1959, till his demise from a heart attack on 15 October 1976.

During his more than 50 years in criminal organisations, he only served 22 months in jail for tax evasion in 1937. His net worth was estimated to be $400 million as of 1976.

8. Jho Low – $150 million

Richest gangsters
Honoree and Capital Limited CEO Mr Jho Low attends Angel Ball 2014 at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City. Photo: J. Countess
Source: Getty Images

Jho Low was born on 4 November 1981. He is 41 years old as of 2022. He is a Malaysian businessman on the run, wanted by authorities worldwide in correlation with the 1Malaysia Development Berhad scandal.

He has been identified as the ringleader behind the widespread fraud, which prosecutors claim was a scheme to divert US$4.5 billion from 1MDB into his accounts. He has an estimated net worth of $150 million as of 2022.

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9. Al Capone – $100 million

Richest gangsters
American gangster Al Capone poses for a portrait, showing off the scar that earned him his nickname circa the 1920s. Photo: Hulton Archive
Source: Getty Images

Capone was an American businessman and gangster who rose to prominence as the co-founder and leader of the Chicago Costume during the Prohibition era. His seven-year period as a crime lord ended when he was sentenced to jail at 33. He died on 25 January 1947 at the age of 48. His net worth, as of 1947, was estimated to be $100 million.

10. Big Meech – $100 million

Richest gangsters
Big Meech. Photo: @bossspook
Source: Instagram

He was born on 21 June 1968. Meech is 54 years old as of 2022. He is a famous American entrepreneur, businessman, and drug dealer from Cleveland, Ohio.

He is widely recognised as the founding father of The Black Mafia Family (BMF), an American money laundering and drug-trafficking organisation. He has an estimated net worth of $100 million.

11. Bugsy Siegel – $100 million

Richest gangsters
Gangster and playboy Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel at the Los Angeles County Jail following his surrender on a grand jury indictment charging him with participation in a Hollywood gangland execution.
Source: Getty Images

He was an American gangster who established the Las Vegas Strip. Siegel, along with his childhood friend and fellow gangster Meyer Lansky, wielded considerable power within the Italian-American Mafia and the majorly Italian-Jewish National Crime Syndicate.

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He died on 20 June 1947 at the age of 41. His net worth as of 1947 was estimated at $100 million.

12. Rayful Edmond – $50 million

Richest gangsters
Rayful Edmond. Photo: @gangstersinc
Source: Instagram

Edmond was born on 26 November 1964. He is 58 years old as of 2022. He is an erstwhile American drug dealer who worked in Washington, D.C., in the 1980s. He has an estimated net worth of $50 million.

13. John Gotti – $30 million

Richest gangsters
Mafia Boss John Gotti, aka 'The Dapper Don', is photographed on a street corner in New York City. Photo: Yvonne Hemsey
Source: Getty Images

John Gotti was the leader of the Gambino crime family in New York City. John commanded and assisted in the killing of Gambino leader Paul Castellano in December 1985.

He soon after succeeded the family, becoming the leader of what was characterised as America's most powerful crime syndicate. He died on 10 June 2002 at the age of 61. His net worth as of 2002 was estimated at $30 million.

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14. Paul Castellano – $20 million

Who were the richest gangsters?
Paul Castellano. Reputed Mafia bosses Paul Castellano left Federal Court after posting $2 million bail each 2/26. Photo: Bettmann
Source: Getty Images

Paul was an American criminal mastermind who took over the Gambino crime family after Carlo Gambino died. He was executed on 16 December 1985 in an unauthorised hit. His net worth as of 1985 is estimated to be $20 million.

15. Frank Abagnale – $10 million

Richest gangsters
Frank Abagnale, a security expert for the FBI, poses for a photograph following an interview in London, U.K. Photo: Chris Ratcliffe
Source: Getty Images

Frank was born on 27 April 1948. He is 74 years old as of 2022. Abagnale preyed on people and small businesses but rose to prominence in the late 1970s by claiming a wide range of victimless worksite fraudulent activities, most of which have since been called into question.

In 1980, Abagnale co-authored his memoir, Catch Me If You Can, which centred on these alleged victimless fraudsters. He has a net worth of $10 million as of 2022.

16. John Gotti Jr – $10 million

Richest gangsters
John Gotti, Jr. attends the Gotti press conference at Sheraton New York Hotel & Towers, Central Park West Room in New York City. Photo: Andrew H. Walker
Source: Getty Images

John was born on 14 February 1964. He is 58 years as of 2022. He is an erstwhile mobster from the United States who served as the acting leader of the Gambino crime family from 1991 to 1999. The younger Gotti was incarcerated for racketeering in 1999, and he was accused in four racketeering court cases between 2004 and 2009, and they all concluded in a mistrial. He has an estimated net worth of $10 million as of 2022.

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17. Freeway Rick Ross – $1 million

Richest gangsters
"Freeway" Rick Ross attends the Super Bowl LIII Power Of Influence Awards at Coco Studios in Atlanta, Georgia. Photo: Johnny Nunez
Source: Getty Images

Freeway was born on 26 January 1960. He is 62 years old as of 2022. He is a convicted drug smuggler and American author widely recognised for the drug empire he built in Los Angeles, California, in the early to mid-1980s.

Ross was jailed for life, but his sentence was reduced after an appeal, and he was released in 2009. He has an estimated net worth of $1 million.

18. Michael Franzese – $1 million

Richest gangsters
Former New York mobster/captain of the Colombo crime family Michael Franzese arrives at the premiere of 'God The Father' at The Los Feliz 3 Cinema in Los Angeles, California. Photo: Angela Weiss
Source: Getty Images

Michael was born on 27 May 1951. He is 71 years old as of 2022. He is the son of underboss Sonny Franzese and an American erstwhile mob boss who was a caporegime in the Colombo crime family.

After his father was convicted of 50 years in prison for a bank heist in 1967, Franzese dropped out of Hofstra University's pre-med program to support his family. In the early 1980s, he was instrumental in removing the federal government from the business of collecting gasoline taxes. His net worth as of 2022 is estimated to be $1 million.

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19. Nicky Barnes – $500 thousand

Nicky was a New York City crime boss during the 1970s. Until his arrest in 1977, he led The Council into an international drug smuggling ring in collaboration with the Italian-American Mafia. Barnes was convicted to life in prison and eventually became a federal informant, which led to The Council's downfall in 1977. He died on 18 June 2012 at the age of 78. His net worth as of 2012 was estimated at $500 thousand.

20. Frank Lucas – $500 thousand

Richest gangsters
Frank Lucas sighting in New York City, NY. Photo: Johnny Nunez
Source: Getty Images

Frank was a drug trafficker from the United States who worked in Harlem, New York City, in the late 1960s and early 1970s. He was recognised for bypassing intermediaries in the drug business and purchasing hero*n directly from his supplier in Southeast Asia's Golden Triangle.

He died on 30 May 2019 at the age of 88. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Frank Lucas' net worth as of 2019 was estimated to be $500 thousand.

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FAQs

  1. Who is the No.1 gangster in the world? Dawood Ibrahim. He is a Dongri, Mumbai-based Indian mafia gangster, drug lord, and the most wanted terrorist. However, some regard Al Capone as the most notorious.
  2. Who is the strongest gangster? Al Capone. He is a mafia boss known for his brutality when dealing with opponents of his unauthorised businesses.
  3. How rich was Al Capone in today's money? His net worth of $100 million as of 1947 is estimated to be almost $1.5 billion in today's cash.
  4. Who was the most intelligent gangster? Johnny Torrio. Elmer Irey, a U.S. Treasury official, described him as the greatest gangster in America.
  5. How much did Al Capone's gun sell? His weapon, one of his favourite items, sold for $860,000.
  6. Who is the most prominent crime family in the world? The Genovese family is one of the most ancient and influential families.
  7. Who was the most ruthless mobster? Anastasia was a relentless and most feared organised crime character in American history, earning him monikers such as The One-Man Army, Mad Hatter, The Earthquake, and Lord High Executioner.

Above are some of the richest gangsters in the world. The list includes tax evaders, crime syndicate leaders, drug kingpins, and fraudsters who presumed the best way to get ahead is by committing crimes.

Yen.com.gh published a list of the ten wealthiest painters in the world. Painting is considered one of the highest arts as it necessitates skill and dedication to create a masterpiece. A good artist can spend years perfecting a piece of work.

A painting can be completed in seconds using modern technology. However, since painters add emotional responses to their work, you cannot appreciate such works of art as much as those done by hand.

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Source: YEN.com.gh

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