This picture is the original picture of dead Escobar the police had taken after a shootout on 2 December 1993, amid another of Escobar’s attempts to elude the Search Bloc. A Colombian electronic surveillance team used radio trilateration technology to track his radiotelephone transmissions and found him hiding in Los Olivos, a middle-class barrio in Medellín. With authorities closing in, a firefight with Escobar and his bodyguard, Álvaro de Jesús Agudelo (alias “El Limón”), ensued. The two fugitives attempted to escape by running across the roofs of adjoining houses to reach a back street, but both were shot and killed by Colombian National Police. Escobar suffered gunshots to the leg and torso, and a fatal gunshot through the ear.
“Plata o Plomo” – Escobar death had to happen eventually
Escobar had a way of dealing with his enemies: he called it “plata o plomo”, literally, silver or lead. Usually, if a politician, judge or policeman got in his way, he would first attempt to bribe them, and if that didn’t work, he would order them killed, occasionally including their family in the hit.
Escobar: “The essence of the cocaine business was “simple – you bribe someone here, you bribe someone there, and you pay a friendly banker to help you bring the money back.”
In 1987 Escobar was the seventh-richest man in the world – working hard to cultivate his “Robin Hood” image, and frequently distributed money to the poor through housing projects and other civic activities, which gained him notable popularity among the poor.
His empire included an army of soldiers and criminals, a private zoo, mansions and apartments all over Colombia, private airstrips and planes for drug transport and personal wealth reported to be in the neighborhood of $24 billion. Escobar was famous for his extramarital affairs, and he tended to prefer under-aged girls.
In 1991, due to increasing pressure to extradite Escobar, the Colombian government and Escobar’s lawyers came up with an interesting arrangement: Escobar would turn himself in and serve a five-year jail term. In return, he would build his own prison and would not be extradited to the United States or anywhere else. The prison, La Catedral, was an elegant fortress which featured a Jacuzzi, a waterfall, a full bar and a soccer field. In addition, Escobar had negotiated the right to select his own “guards.” He ran his empire from inside La Catedral, giving orders by telephone. There were no other prisoners in La Catedral. Today, La Catedral is in ruins, hacked to pieces by treasure hunters looking for hidden dead Escobar loot.
For more information on the death of Escobar read here.