The son of infamous Colombian cartel leader Pablo Escobar visited Guadalajara last week to speak about how to combat drug violence. Sebastian Marroquin, 38, delivered a talk for the “Youth Launch” forum at the Instituto Alpes Cumbres. Speaking to a packed lecture theater, Marroquin said that culture, sport and education were the weapons to tackle drugs and drug trafficking, not guns.
Marroquin also said that if his father had been given an education, he could have had a positive impact in Colombia and his abilities might have been used for the common good.
Pablo Escobar was shot dead by police in 1993 after making a phone call to his son that gave away his location. He is regarded as the wealthiest criminal in history, having made an estimated US$30 billion trafficking cocaine. Following his death, 16-year-old Marroquin told a Colombian radio station that he would take revenge for his father and kill all those responsible.
Yet after moving to Argentina, Marroquin settled into a very different life, working as an architect, marrying and raising a family. He was featured in the 2009 documentary “Sins of My Father,” for which he revisited Colombia and met with the families of the victims Escobar had ordered assassinated.
Using his birth name of Juan Pablo Escobar, Marroquin published the 2014 book “Pablo Escobar: Mi Padre,” (Pablo Escobar: My Father). The book has not yet been translated into English but has become a bestseller in Latin America.