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Top 10 Most Wanted & Dreaded World Criminals


In 2008, the American magazine Forbes published a list of the Top 10 most wanted
fugitives in the world.  To date this list is extremely relevant as none of the members
have been captured.  The individuals on this list are international criminals, either
prominent members of organized crime families or leaders of terrorist groups. They are
all being harbored in various safe havens around the world and massive awards are
being offered for information leading to their arrest.              

10. Omid Tahvili


Omid Tahvili was born in Tehran, Iran, and is 39 years old.  From a young age Tahvili
was involved with organized crime.  He is respected and known by many mob families
worldwide.  At a young age he became the boss and kingpin of an Iranian organized
crime family in Canada, which was connected to various international crime
organizations.  By 2003, he was recognized as having dozens of Iranian expatriates
working under him.  Tahvili’s gang was involved in various illegal activities.  One of
them was a fraudulent telemarketing business that targeted people in the United States,
stealing approximately US$3 million from hundreds of victims.  A federal arrest
warrant was issued for Tahvili on
January 30, 2003, by the U.S. District Court, Central
District of California.  He is being charged with mail fraud, wire fraud, telemarketing
fraud and aiding and abetting.

Tahvili eluded trial in the United States, but brought attention upon himself in 2005
when he kidnapped and sexually abused another man.  Tahvili was arrested and awaiting
trial in the maximum-security North Fraser Pretrial Centre in British Columbia when he
escaped on November 2007 after bribing a security guard named Edwin Ticne.  A closed
circuit television video showed Tahvili leaving the Pretrial Centre wearing a janitor's
uniform and being led through a series of locked doors by Ticne.  Tahvili subsequently
received an 11-year sentence in absentia and became the most wanted man in Canada
and the 10th most wanted in the world.  He has connections throughout Canada, Europe
and the Middle East and has been eluding police for some time. 

9. James J. Bulger


James “Whitey” Bulger was born in Dorchester, Massachusetts in 1929.  At a young age he
became an organized crime figure in Boston.  He was involved in hijacking liqueur trucks, robbing
banks, gambling rings, and various mob activities.  In 1956, he was arrested for bank robbery and
given a 25 year sentence, while in jail he was subjected to a torturous involvement in the MK
ULTRA program.   The project goal was to research mind-control drugs for the Central
Intelligence Agency.  Bulger also did time on Alcatraz Island and was released after nine years
served.  In 1979, he became the leader of the Winter Hill Gang, an Irish-American crime family
based in Boston, Massachusetts.  In the early 1980’s, the gang became heavily involved in
narcotics trafficking.  Bulger began to summon drug dealers from in and around Boston to his
headquarters.  He would inform each dealer that he had been offered a substantial sum to
assassinate them.  He would then demand a large cash payment not to do so. 

By 1988, Bulger headed an organization that ran all of the rackets, extortion, loansharking,
bookmaking, truck hijackings, and arms trafficking not just in Boston but throughout New
England.  His gang was earning so much money that they set up "The X Fund," which was used
for payoffs of individuals in politics and law enforcement.  In April 1994, a task force of the DEA
and Boston Police Department launched a probe into Bulger's gambling and drug operations.  He
was tipped off and Bulger fled Boston on December 23, 1994.  James J. Bulger is currently on the
FBI Ten Most Wanted list and is ranked as the world’s 9th most wanted criminal.  A reward of
US $2 million is being offered for information leading to his capture.  James J. Bulger has been
featured on the television show America's Most Wanted 14 times.

8. Joseph Kony


Joseph Kony was born in the village of Odek, a village east of Gulu in northern Uganda in 1961.
In 1987, Kony became the leader of the Lord's Resistance Army, which is a sectarian guerrilla
army based in northern Uganda.  The group is engaged in an armed rebellion against the Ugandan
government in what is now one of Africa's longest-running conflicts.  The bulk of Kony’s foot
soldiers are children.  He is estimated to have taken 10,000 or more boys and girls since the LRA
started fighting in 1986.  He often killed their family and neighbors when abducting these children,
forcing them to fight for him.  In 1992, Kony’s army kidnapped 44 girls from the Sacred Heart
Secondary and St. Mary's girl’s schools.  The LRA is currently proscribed as a terrorist
organization by the United States.  On October 6, 2005 it was announced by the International
Criminal Court (ICC) that arrest warrants had been issued for five members of the Lord's
Resistance Army for crimes against humanity following a sealed indictment.  This included
Joseph Kony.
There are 33 charges, 12 counts are crimes against humanity, which include murder, enslavement,
sexual enslavement and rape.  There are another 21 counts of war crimes, which include murder,
cruel treatment of civilians, intentionally directing an attack against a civilian population, pillaging,
inducing rape, and forced enlisting of children into the rebel ranks.  Joseph Kony went into hiding
and has eluded capture.  He insists that the Lord's Resistance Army is fighting for the Ten
Commandments.  On December 24, 2008, according to the United Nations peacekeeping force,
rebels of the Lord's Resistance Army massacred 189 people and abducted 20 children during a
celebration sponsored by the Catholic Church in Faradje, Democratic Republic of Congo.
Joseph Kony is ranked as the 8th Most Wanted criminal in the world.

7. Manuel Marulanda & Alfonso Cano

Manuel Marulanda

Alfonso Cano

Manuel Marulanda was the 7th most wanted man in the world when he died in 2008, so I have
given the spot on this list to the new FARC leader Alfonso Cano.  Maneul Marulanda was the
founding boss of The
Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – People’s Army (FARC).
FARC was established in the 1960s as the military wing of the Colombian Communist Party and
is a guerrilla movement.  The group later became involved with the cocaine trade during the
1980’s.  FARC is a Violent non-state actor, considered a terrorist group by the Colombian
government, the United States Department of State, Canada, and the European Union.  The group
has an estimated 11,000 members in 2009.  In 2002, Colombia's Administrative Department of
Security (DAS), issued international warrants through Interpol to 179 countries for arresting the 14
principal leaders of the rebel Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia , the country's largest
guerrilla group.  They are accused of various terrorist bombings, murder, kidnapping, and
organized crime activities against the state. Marulanda died of a heart attack on March 26, 2008.
He was replaced as commander in chief by Alfonso Cano.  Cano is currently one of the most
wanted men in the world. 

6. Félicien Kabuga


Kabuga was born in Muniga, in the commune of Mukarange, prefecture of Byumba, Rwanda.
Kabuga was a successful businessman, multimillionaire, and strong supporter of the
Republican Movement for Democracy and Development
, which is now-defunct political party in
Rwanda, but it was the ruling party of Rwanda from 1975 to 1994.  After Rwanda was conquered
by the Tutsi-dominated Rwandese Patriotic Front led by Paul Kagame, the MRND was driven
from power and outlawed.  This caused Kabuga to fund and participate in the
Rwandan Genocide
of 1994, the most horrific genocide in recent history.  It involved the mass killing of hundreds of
thousands of Rwanda's Tutsis and Hutu.  Over the course of approximately 100 days, from the
assassination of Juvénal Habyarimana on April 6 through mid-July, at least 500,000 people were
killed.   Most estimates indicate a death toll between 800,000 and 1,000,000, which could be as
high as 20% of the total population.

In 2009, The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda issued an international arrest warrant for
Kabuga charging him with 11 counts, including genocide, conspiracy to commit genocide, and
complicity in genocide.  If apprehended he will be punished by the death penalty.  In a speech
given on August 28, 2006 during his visit to Kenya, then U.S. Senator Barack Obama accused
Kenya of allowing Kabuga to purchase a safe haven.   The Kenyan government denied these
allegations and described Obama's allegation regarding Kabuga as an insult to the people of this
country.   Félicien Kabuga remains the 6th most wanted criminal in the world.

5. Matteo Messina Denaro


Matteo Messina Denaro was born April 26, 1962.  He was raised in a mafia family and grew up in
Castelvetrano, the province of Trapani, Sicily.  After the natural death of his father in November
1998, Matteo became capo mandamento of the area including Castelvetrano and the neighboring
cities and he soon expanded his empire to Trapani and its surroundings.   Messina Denaro is also
known as Diabolik in the Sicilian mafioso.  He runs a well organized and brutal operation and
commands some 900 men-of-honour and apparently reorganized the 20 Mafia families in Trapani
into one single mandamento separated from the rest of Cosa Nostra.  The Trapani Mafia is
considered the zoccolo duro of Cosa Nostra and the most powerful except for the families in
Palermo.  Messina Denaro and his family run an extensive extortion racket forcing businesses to
pay a pizzo (protection money) and skimming off public construction contracts.  The family owns
substantial sand quarries and Denaro is also active in the international drug trade, allegedly with the
Cuntrera-Caruana clan, attracting attention of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Matteo Messina Denaro has strong links with Mafia families in Palermo.  With the introduction of
the strict prison regime in 1993 the Italian mafia decided to try and force the Italian state to retreat,
which resulted in a series of bomb attacks in the Via dei Georgofili in Florence, in Via Palestro in
Milan, in the Piazza San Giovanni in Laterano and Via San Teodoro in Rome, which left 10 people
dead and 93 injured as well as damage to centres of cultural heritage such as the Uffizi Gallery.
Messina Denaro and his family became international criminals.  Denaro has been evading capture
since 1993 and is rated as the 5th most wanted man in the world.  In 2006, after the arrest of
Bernardo Provenzano, Messina Denaro is believed to have been promoted as one of the new
leaders of Cosa Nostra.  He also gained international attention in 2001, when the magazine
L'Espresso put him on the cover with the headline: Ecco il nuovo capo della mafia (Here is the
new boss of the Mafia).

4. Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar


Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar was born in Mumkaa village in Ratnagiri in the Indian state of
Maharashtra on December 26, 1955.  He has always lived a life of organized crime and is known
as the head of the organized crime syndicate D-Company in Mumbai.  D-Company carries out
billions of dollars of operations in Mumbai alone and the group has influences everywhere.
D-Company is also alleged to run the largest underground business in South Asia.  Its operations
include arms dealings, drug trafficking, hawala, organized crime, and funding of terrorist
organizations.  Ibrahim is believed to control much of the 'hawala' system, which is the very
commonly used unofficial system for transferring money and remittances outside the view of
official agencies.

He is widely believed to have masterminded the 1993 Bombay Bombings, a series of terrorist
attacks carried out in the city.  In 2003, the Indian and United States governments declared
Ibrahim a "Global Terrorist".  According to the United States, Ibrahim maintains close links with
al-Qaida's Osama bin Laden.  Indian and Russian intelligence agencies have pointed out Ibrahim's
possible involvement in several other terror attacks, including the November 2008 Mumbai
attacks.  Many intelligence agencies feel that he is being provided protection by the Pakistani
intelligence agency.  The issue of extradition of Dawood Ibrahim is one of the major hurdles in the
frosty relations between India and Pakistan.  He remains the 4th most wanted criminal in the

3. Alimzhan Tokhtakhounov


Alimzhan Tokhtakhounov was born in Tashkent, Uzbek SSR, in 1949.  In early years he was
amateur soccer player, playing for junior team of Pakhtakor in some seasons.  His attempts to
continue his career in CSKA Moscow failed and he soon ceased to play.  He then turned to a life
a crime and began to gain ties into the Russian mob.  In early 90's he left Russia and settled in
Paris, France.  There he was soon accused in committing illegal business deals and smuggling of
hardware from Germany.  He was widely considered a member of the Russian mafia while living
in France.  Tokhtakhounov is notably close to professional Russian tennis players.  He is thought
of as a fixer of professional sports matches and in 2002 was indicted and accused in the bribery
of ice skating judges at the 2002 Winter Olympics.  It was an international story and a slap to the
face of the Olympic Games.  He was arrested in Italy by U.S. request, but Italian court denounced
the extradition bid and freed Tokhtakhounov.  He has become an international criminal and is
rated #3 on the list of the most wanted men in the world.  Tokhtakhounov is thought to be a high
ranking member in the active Russian mob, which controls organized crime activities in that area
of the world.

2. Joaquin Guzman


Joaquin Guzman is a Mexican kingpin and the most wanted drug lord in the world.  Guzman
became involved in drug trafficking in the late 1980s as a trafficker and air logistics expert for the
once powerful Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo.  He was well known for his use of sophisticated
tunnels to smuggle cocaine from Mexico into the United States.  Today, the Sinaloa Cartel
smuggles multi-ton cocaine shipments from Colombia through Mexico to the United States.  The
organization uses both air and maritime means to transport these shipments.  Guzman has
contacts with Colombian sources of supply, as well as major Colombian traffickers based in
Mexico.  The organization has also been involved in the production, transshipment, storage, and
distribution of marijuana and heroin.  Joaquin Guzman became Mexico's top drug kingpin in 2003
after the arrest of his rival Osiel Cárdenas of the Gulf Cartel.


He is wanted by the U.S. Mexico, and the International Criminal Police Organization.  He has
evaded operations to capture him and is thought to be hiding in the
Sierra Madre Mountains in
western Mexico.  In 2001, he escaped from prison days before being extradited to the U.S. and in
2004 300 paratroopers swooped on Guzmán's Sierra Madre stronghold, as his voice had been
heard on a taped phone line half an hour earlier.  He once again eluded capture.  He currently has a
$5 million reward for information leading to his arrest.  In March 17, 2007, Mexican federal agents
seized USD $205.6 million, and $157,500 pesos in a mansion in Mexico City belonging to Joaquin
Guzman.  In 2009, Joaquín Guzmán was listed at 701 on Forbes list of richest people in the world
with an estimated net worth of $1 billion.  He is currently the 2nd most wanted man in the world. 

1. Osama bin Laden


Osama bin Laden was born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.  His father Muhammed Awad bin Laden who
was a wealthy businessman with close ties to the Saudi royal family.  After leaving college in 1979
bin Laden joined Abdullah Azzam to fight the Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan.  During this time
there was an insistence that Arab soldiers be integrated among the Afghan groups instead of
forming their own fighting force.  This caused Osama bin Laden to form the terrorist and war
group Al-Qaeda.  It is believed that the first bombing attack involving bin Laden was the 29
December 1992 bombing of the Gold Mihor Hotel in Aden in which two people were killed.

Since that time Al-Qaeda has conducted numerous international terrorist operations that included
mass casualties.  With the biggest and most influential incident being the 2001 September 11
attacks carried out in the United States.  In total, 2,993 people lost their lives that day.  Since
2001, Osama bin Laden and his organization have been major targets of the United States' War on
Terrorism.  He is yet to be captured and is widely considered the #1 most wanted man in the
world.  Bin Laden and fellow Al-Qaeda leaders are believed to be hiding near the border of
Afghanistan and Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas.

Sheri - September 11, 2009 at 9:31 PM
Very informative, Scary Obama is 1.

Copyright The List Blog - Top 10, All Rights Reserved, Posted September 11, 2009