When we think of drug cartels and organized drug-trafficking, we usually think of males. Yet, there were some infamous females who emerged from the ugly, intense world of narco-trafficking. These ten women made their names known to the world through selling, dealing, and trafficking drugs, committing homicides and murders, and carrying out kidnappings and armed robberies. These are some dangerous ladies, indeed. These females used their looks, intelligence, and connections to earn big bucks and power within the drug underworld.
Many of these women met tragic ends, or ended up doing their time behind bars. While most of them are notorious in Mexico, there are a few who have caused terror and instilled fear beyond Latin America. Some of the women started out with promising futures and well-to-do endeavors before getting sucked into the world of drugs, crime, and disaster. From Monterrey, Mexico to Los Angeles, California, as well as Philadelphia and Melbourne, these are some women you will never want to do business with.
Hopefully this list of 10 of the most dangerous female drug kingpins will educate you a bit on these women and why they are so feared throughout the drug world.
10. Jemeker Thompson
Jemeker Thompson reached the top of her game in the 1980s, during the crack boom in Los Angeles, California. She earned the moniker “Queen Pin” for her notorious action in the cocaine business, and was busted when her ex-boyfriend ratted her out to police. Thompson turned to the drug biz when she was strapped for cash after getting evicted from her home. She joined Anthony M. Mosley in his cocaine-selling endeavors. The two married and continued their trade, with Jemeker powering on after Anthony’s tragic death. She began selling hair on the celebrity market, and expanded her drug-reaching territory. She fled to go into hiding in 1993 and was finally caught in 1995.
9. Thelma Wright
Thelma Wright also worked in L.A. trafficked drugs between there and Philadelphia. She worked with her husband, Jackie Wright, who was murdered. Following that disaster, Thelma became the new drug lord and took a liking to the easy money and sense of power. Philly was brimming with drugs, making for easy business, and Thelma was making upwards of $400,000 a month in drug profits. She eventually got caught in a shooting between two opposing gangs and decided to leave her way of life behind. She ended up writing a memoir in 2011: With Eyes From Both Sides – Living My Life In and Out of the Game.
8. Sandra Avila Beltran
Sandra Avila Beltran is known as one of Mexico’s most lucrative and notorious drug lords. She was dubbed “The Queen of the Pacific” and served as a middle-women for Mexico-Colombia drug trafficking. She was arrested in 2007 in Mexico and spent 7 years behind bars before being released in February 2015. She was charged with connection of the seizure of 9 tons of Colombian cocaine that was on its way to the United States. She was given a plea deal as being an “accessory” to the drug-trafficking crimes, which she accepted. She was also charged in 2014 on account of money laundering charges, upping her prison sentence.
7. Kath Pettingill
Kathleen Pettingill was known as “The Matriarch” of a crime-centric family in Melbourne, Australia. Kath headed the organization, which participated in drug trafficking, arms dealing, and armed robberies. Two of her sons have been convicted of murder, and various family members have been caught by authorities. Kathleen had once been a prostitute, and went on to run her own brothels in Australia. Kath herself was snagged in a scuffle while she and her husband were trying to repay an outstanding debt on their daughter’s behalf, totaling $300. Kath was shot and as a result now has one glass eye. We bet that looks pretty tough.
6. Enedina Arellano Felix
Enedina Arellano Felix is considered to be the most powerful woman in the drug world, according to the Drug Enforcement Association. She is the leader of a drug cartel in Tijuana, Mexico and organized some of the most notorious drug dealings in the 1990s. After her siblings died, Enedina assumed the leading role in the cartel and played a role in one of the most horrific drug trafficking wars the United States has ever seen. Enedina and her brood were responsible for myriad bloodshed and terror, and Enedina used her looks and intelligence to carry out devious jobs. It is a far cry from her teenage dream of becoming “Queen of Carnaval.”
5. Blanca Cazares Salazar
Blanca was known as “The Empress,” as she was the sister of major drug lord Victor Emilio Cazares Salazar, (a.k.a. “The Emperor.”) Blanca was most known for her money laundering actions, and she worked with 19 companies and 22 different people in Mexico through a network of narcotic traffickers. Her intelligently-crafted system was nabbed by authorities and subjected to economic sanctions according to the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act. Blanca’s network of businesses served as a cover-up and distraction from her brother’s Sinaloa drug cartel. Her operation extended from Mexico and into California, and included immediate and extended family members.
4. Maria Jimenez
Maria Jimenez, also known as La Tosca, ended up confessing to kidnapping, drug dealing, and murdering 20 people. She is one of Mexico’s most dangerous female criminals and was arrested in May of 2012 at the age of 26. Jimenez belonged to the terrorizing Las Zetas drug cartel and was paid $1,700 a month for her misdeeds. Among her notorious actions were a shootout against rival drug traffickers, the shooting of a police officer, and her role in the murders of 20 people. She was nabbed by authorities along with 3 male counterparts. Las Zetas was responsible for 14 drug selling organizations in the Mexican city of Monterrey.
3. Griselda Blanco
Griselda Blanco was known as “The Godmother” in a Miami-based cocaine and drug-trafficking cartel. The Colombia-born Blanco worked as one of the most feared drug leaders in the 1970s and 1980s, earning about $2 billion. She became notorious for killing her ex-husbands and lovers, and earned the nickname “Black Widow.” This woman carried out her first murder when she was only 11 years old, while kidnapping a 10-year-old boy. She also designed a pair of underpants that could store drugs, making drug-smuggling easier. She was killed in 2012 when she was assassinated in Colombia. Blanco was charged with only 3 murders in her lifetime, although she may have carried out up to 240.
2. Edith Lopez Lopez
Edith Lopez Lopez was arrested in 2008 and is known for her work with her husband, Raul Nunez Morales (El Vaquero) and his narco-trafficking crimes. The two caused great panic and disaster in the 2000s, earning Edith the nickname “Queen of the South.” The pair were connected with at least 2 homicides and other drug-related crimes, and Edith was detained by officers of the Unit for Combating Drug Trafficking. Upon her arrest, Edith was found with large amounts of cash, 40 individual doses of cocaine, and 15 psychotropic drugs. Her detainment was one more step towards putting an end to the epidemic of violence in a drug-riddled Mexico.
1. Mireya Moreno Carreon
Mireya Moreno Carreon was known as “La Flaca,” or “Skinny Girl.” Yet, she was a threat to the stability of Mexico. She was one of the first females to make a name for herself in the Las Zetas drug cartel, and came to manage all of the drug-trafficking hotspots in Monterrey, Mexico. She began as a police officer before joining up with the drug lords, and eventually became a boss of Las Zetas. She was arrested by authorities one year later while driving a stolen vehicle that held tons of drugs, including 100 bags of cocaine and 50 bags of crack.