Most Notorious Criminals of All Time

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Most Notorious Criminals of All Time


Violence and crime have been part of human history since the earliest civilizations. These continue to be a threat to people no matter how countries try to prevent them. One probable reason for this is because criminals, especially the most notorious ones, are often glamorized in books and movies. People find their exploits fascinating. Here is a list of the most notorious criminals of all time.


Photo Credit: Vocal Media


Jesse James

Considered as one of the most notorious criminals of all time, James was a gang leader involved in several train and bank robberies. While many believed that he stole from the rich to feed the poor, this was not true. According to an article by Vocal Media, a social publishing platform, James was a dangerous criminal who only stole for his own gang. He also used to be a Confederate guerilla and was involved in several atrocities committed against several Union soldiers during the Civil War.


Photo Credit: Vocal Media


Ted Kaczynski

At age 16, Kaczynski was known as a genius with a high IQ and was enrolled in Harvard. However, he became infamous and tagged as one of the most dangerous criminals of all time as the Unabomber. Kaczynski was a domestic terrorist responsible for over a dozen bomb attacks, causing many serious injuries and a few deaths. This criminal also believed that the industrialized world and technology were a disaster to the human race, as he wrote in his manifesto. He was captured in 1995 after the largest and most expensive manhunt in FBI history.


Photo Credit: Vocal Media


Al Capone

Best known by the nickname “Scarface,” Alphonse Gabriel Capone was an American crime boss, businessman, and mobster. According to an article by, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees, Capone was known to lead the Chicago Outfit. Before that, he became a member of a notorious Brooklyn-based gang known as the Five Points Gang. Aside from his seven-year criminal career, Capone also ran a prostitution business, He smuggled liquor at a very young age.


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Timothy McVeigh

On April 19, 1995, Timothy McVeigh detonated a truck bomb in front of an Oklahoma City federal building, killing 168 people. During that time, it was the largest terrorist attack to ever take place in the US. A veteran of the Gulf War, he became infamous as a domestic terrorist. Apparently, McVeigh was seeking revenge on the US government for its role during the siege of Waco that killed cult leader David Koresh and 75 of his followers.


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Pablo Escobar

Also known as the “King of Coke,” Pablo Escobar was a Columbian drug lord who controlled numerous drug empires while murdering thousands of people across the world. During his reign on The Medellin Cartel, one of the most violent and notorious cartels to ever exist, the drug lord amassed a fortune of over $2 billion. In the 70s and 80s, Escobar had a near-monopoly in the cocaine smuggling business to the US. He managed to ship over 80 percent of the drugs that found its way into the country.


Photo Credit: Vocal Media


Jim Jones

Jim Jones was the man behind the cult known as Peoples Temple, which didn't permit anyone to leave once they joined. He proclaimed himself the messiah and promised his followers a utopia in the jungles of South America. However, reports of abuses led to an investigation of the cult by a group headed by US Rep. Leo Ryan. The congressman and others including cult members who wished to leave the group were gunned down at the airport as they were boarding a return flight. Possibly fearing a repercussion, Jones led his followers to mass suicide, killing more than 900 people including 304 children by inducing most of them to drink cyanide-laced Flavor Aid. It was considered the largest murder/suicide the world had ever seen until 9/11. 


Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons


Griselda Blanco

Best known as The Cocaine Grandmother, Griselda Blanco was a pioneer when it comes to the biggest cocaine drug trade in Miami. She spent her childhood pickpocketing and was later arrested on a federal drug charge. However, Blanco continued her cocaine business inside a Miami prison with the help of her secret underlings. During the 70s and 80s, it was believed that she was responsible for more than 200 murders while running her cocaine business and transporting drugs from different parts of the country. 




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