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Vigilante Groups Use Terror Tactics in Revenge Against Fugitive Escobar


March 1993

In another blow to Colombia's civil order, a vigilante group of the families of former employees of Pablo Escobar has taken to terror tactics to avenge Escobar-ordered killings of family members (Douglas Farah, "Vigilantes Join in Pursuit of Drug Kingpin: Colombian Escobar's Tactics Provoke Retribution in Kind," Washington Post, 2/20/93, A15).

The group, "Pepes", Spanish for "People Persecuted by Pablo Escobar," burned down a luxury home owned by Escobar's wife hours after two bomb blasts attributed to Escobar killed four and wounded 117 people in Bogota. The group is also thought responsible for gunning down 17 teenage hit men thought to be working for Escobar, and for destroying Escobar's antique car collection. Another group called "Free Colombia" is armed but is not believed responsible for any violent incidents.