20th Century Gangsters

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Rank the Most Wicked 20th Century Gangsters

 1 
Pablo Escobar
(Colombian Drug Lord)

Pablo Escobar
117
Birthdate: December 1, 1949
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Rionegro
Died: December 2, 1993

A notorious Colombian drug lord, Pablo Escobar was the founder and leader of the infamous Medellín Cartel. His drug cartel monopolized the cocaine trade into the United States and he became one of the wealthiest criminals ever in history. Dubbed "The King of Cocaine", he left behind a controversial legacy upon his death at the age of 44.

 2 
Al Capone
(Gangster - Co-founder & Boss of the 'Chicago Outfit')

Al Capone
40
Birthdate: January 17, 1899
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: January 25, 1947

Al Capone, also known by the nickname Scarface, was one of the most notorious American gangsters who controlled the organised crime in Chicago between 1925 and 1931. He was known for violence and cruelty in eliminating rival gang members, the most infamous incident being the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre. His life inspired numerous books and films.

 3 
John Dillinger
(Robber, Gangster)

John Dillinger
26
Birthdate: June 22, 1903
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Indianapolis, Indiana, United States
Died: July 22, 1934

A gangster of the Great Depression era, John Dillinger led a group known as the "Dillinger Gang". His gang was accused of robbing 24 banks and four police stations. He was a master evader and escaped the police’s attempts to capture him many times. He was finally shot to death by the authorities in 1934.

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 4 
Lucky Luciano
(Gangster)

Lucky Luciano
19
Birthdate: November 24, 1897
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Lercara Friddi, Italy
Died: January 26, 1962

An Italian-born gangster, Lucky Luciano is regarded as the father of modern organized crime in the US; he served as the first boss of the Genovese crime family. He also played a key role in the rise of the National Crime Syndicate. His life and style inspired several films, television series, and books. His eponymous biopic was released in 1973.

 5 
Ronald Kray
(Gangster Involved in Organised Crime in the East End of London, England, from the late 1950s to 1967)

Ronald Kray
27
Birthdate: October 24, 1933
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Haggerston, London, England
Died: March 17, 1995

Ronald Kray was a British criminal involved in organized crime in the East End of London in the 1950s and 1960s. Along with his twin brother, Reggie, he ran a gang that was notorious for committing murders, armed robberies, and arson among other criminal activities. The brothers were arrested in 1968 and sentenced to life imprisonment.

 6 
Dawood Ibrahim
(Criminal)

Dawood Ibrahim
54
Birthdate: December 27, 1955
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Khed Ratnagiri, Bombay State

A mobster and drug dealer most wanted by India, Dawood Ibrahim heads the organized crime syndicate popularluy known as D-Company. He was named No.3 on The World's 10 Most Wanted Fugitives by the FBI in 2011. He is wanted on the charges of terrorism, murder, targeted killing, extortion, and drug trafficking among other crimes.

 7 
Bugsy Siegel
(Mobster)

Bugsy Siegel
7
Birthdate: February 28, 1906
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: June 20, 1947

Notorious mobster Bugsy Siegel held significant influence within the Italian-American Mafia and was regarded as a “celebrity gangster.” Good-looking and charismatic, he was an enigmatic figure. He played a key role in the development of the Las Vegas Strip. Noted for his prowess with guns, he met a grisly end when he was shot dead in 1947.

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 8 
John Gotti
(Boss of the Gambino Crime Family)

John Gotti
24
Birthdate: October 27, 1940
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Bronx, New York, United States
Died: June 10, 2002

John Gotti was the boss of the Gambino crime family, described as America's most powerful crime syndicate. It made millions per year from criminal activities like racketeering, loan sharking, drug trafficking, prostitution, extortion, pornography and illegal gambling. The FBI convicted him in 1992 and he was sentenced to life in prison without parole and later died of throat cancer.

 9 
Henry Hill
(Mobster)

Henry Hill
23
Birthdate: June 11, 1943
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: June 12, 2012
Henry Hill was a mobster from New York’s Lucchese crime family, who later testified against his former associates. His life inspired the book Wiseguy: Life in a Mafia Family and the film Goodfellas. He was associated with crimes such as gambling, drug trafficking, and high-profile robberies at the JFK Airport.

 10 
Frank Costello
(Crime Boss)

Frank Costello
1
Birthdate: January 26, 1891
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cassano allo Ionio, Italy
Died: February 18, 1973

Frank Costello was an Italian-American kingpin of the famous Luciano crime family. After serving as a trusted consigliere for the Luciano crime family under Lucky Luciano, Costello became acting boss in 1937 when underboss Genovese fled to Italy, while Luciano was imprisoned. However, he retired in 1957 to avoid an altercation with Genovese, who wanted to rule the crime family.

 11 
Michael Franzese
(Crime Boss)

Michael Franzese
13
Birthdate: May 27, 1951
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States

Michael Franzese's story of being an influential member of the Colombo crime family to becoming a motivational speaker and writer inspired several works of art, including Martin Scorsese's 1990 film Goodfellas where he was played by actor Joseph Bono. In 1986, he was named in Fortune magazine's list of Fifty Most Wealthy and Powerful Mafia Bosses.

 12 
Carlo Gambino
(Crime Boss)

Carlo Gambino
4
Birthdate: August 24, 1902
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Palermo, Italy
Died: October 15, 1976

Carlo Gambino was an Italian-American kingpin of the famous Gambino crime family. He took over the Commission of the Mafia after the incarceration of Vito Genovese in 1959. Although he was involved in organized crime for more than five decades, he was imprisoned for only 22 months for a tax evasion charge. Carlo Gambino is often portrayed in crime films.

 13 
Butch Cassidy
(Train and bank robber)

Butch Cassidy
9
Birthdate: April 13, 1866
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Beaver, Utah, United States
Died: November 7, 1908

Train and bank robber Butch Cassidy was the leader of a gang of criminal outlaws known as the "Wild Bunch" in the Old West. The son of ranchers, he ran away from home as a teenager and became involved in a life of crime. He started with minor criminal offenses and eventually became a much-feared robber.

 14 
Frank Lucas
(Drug Trafficker)

Frank Lucas
20
Birthdate: September 9, 1930
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: La Grange, North Carolina, United States
Died: May 30, 2019
Frank Lucas was a notorious drug trafficker from the 1960s and the 1970s. Legends state that he bought drugs from the "Golden Triangle" and smuggled them into the U.S. using the coffins of servicemen. His 70-year prison sentence was commuted to a 5-year sentence, after he became an informant.

 15 
Meyer Lansky
(Gangster, Mob's Accountant)

Meyer Lansky
14
Birthdate: July 4, 1902
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Grodno, Belarus
Died: January 15, 1983
Meyer Lansky, or the "Mob's Accountant,” was key to the formation of the National Crime Syndicate along with Charles "Lucky" Luciano. A member of the Jewish mob, he built a worldwide gambling empire that included casinos in Las Vegas. Hyman Roth from The Godfather Part II was based on him.

 16 

Ernesto Fonseca Carrillo
20
Birthdate: August 1, 1930
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Badiraguato Municipality

Ernesto Fonseca Carrillo is a convicted Mexican drug lord. He led a now-defunct criminal group called the Guadalajara Cartel alongside Rafael Caro Quintero and Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo. In 1982, the Drug Enforcement Administration indicted him in a money laundering operation, but he fled back to Mexico where he was finally arrested in 1985.

 17 
Haji Mastan
(Gangster, Smuggler)

Haji Mastan
22
Birthdate: March 1, 1926
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Panaikulam, Ramanathapuram District (Madras Presidency now Tamil Nadu), British India
Died: May 9, 1994
Mastan Mirza, or Haji Mastan, was an Indian mafia boss. He ruled the Mumbai crime sector for more than 2 decades, along with Karim Lala. He invested in the smuggling syndicate of Mumbai and also financed films and real-estate projects. He was known for his love for the color white.

 18 
Mickey Cohen
(Gangster)

Mickey Cohen
3
Birthdate: September 4, 1913
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: July 29, 1976

Mickey Cohen was a gangster who became involved with the Chicago Outfit before running multiple businesses like casinos, nightclubs, gas stations, and floral shops. His association with the underworld and his violent methods make him a popular choice for gangster character in crime films; he has been portrayed by popular actors in films like Bugsy, L.A. Confidential, and Gangster Squad.

 19 
Joe Gallo
(Mobster)

Joe Gallo
11
Birthdate: April 7, 1929
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: April 7, 1972

Italian-American gangster Joe Gallo, nicknamed "Crazy Joe,” was part of New York’s Colombo crime family. Initially an associate of the Profaci crime family, Gallo was later involved in the First Colombo War. He was suspected of launching an attack on Joseph Colombo and was shot dead on his 43rd birthday.

 20 
Vito Genovese
(Mobster)

Vito Genovese
6
Birthdate: November 21, 1897
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Tufino, Italy
Died: February 14, 1969
Italian-born American mafia leader Vito Genovese was an associate of Lucky Luciano. Genovese was part of the Castellammarese War and was instrumental in the rise of organized crime in the U.S. He later led the Luciano crime family, which became known as the Genovese crime family.

 21 
Danny Greene
(Mobster)

Danny Greene
1
Birthdate: November 14, 1933
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Cleveland, Ohio, United States
Died: October 6, 1977

Mobster Danny Greene was an associate of Cleveland-based gangster John Nardi in the 1970s’ gang war, in which they set off car bombs. Greene served as the president of the International Longshoremen's Association and also had his own gang, named the Celtic Club. He was assassinated in a car-bomb attack.

 22 

Salvatore Maranzano
0
Birthdate: July 31, 1886
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Castellammare del Golfo, Italy
Died: September 10, 1931
Italian crime lord Salvatore Maranzano was associated with the organized crime sector of Castellammare del Golfo of Sicily. A Cosa Nostra leader, he later joined the Bonanno Crime Family of New York. He initiated the Castellammarese War and formed New York’s Five Families. Lucky Luciano got him murdered.

 23 

Albert Anastasia
6
Birthdate: February 26, 1902
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Parghelia, Italy
Died: October 25, 1957
Italian-American mobster Umberto "Albert" Anastasia, or Anastasio, co-founded the American Mafia and later co-established Murder, Inc. Nicknamed The One-Man Army, he later became the boss of the Gambino crime family and also began controlling the New York waterfront. He was killed on the orders of Carlo Gambino and Vito Genovese.

 24 
Veerappan
(Indian criminal)

Veerappan
43
Birthdate: January 18, 1952
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Gopinatham, Mysore State, India
Died: October 18, 2004

 25 
Carmine Persico
(Mobster, Boss of the Colombo Crime Family)

Carmine Persico
4
Birthdate: August 8, 1937
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: March 7, 2019

Gangster and mafia boss Carmine Persico, also known as The Snake, Junior, and Immortal, led the New York-based Colombo crime family for a long time. He had been convicted for a number of crimes, including racketeering and loan-sharking and was serving a 139-year sentence when he died in 2019.

 26 
Dutch Schultz
(Gangster)

Dutch Schultz
4
Birthdate: August 6, 1901
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bronx, New York, United States
Died: October 24, 1935
American mobster Dutch Schultz had a difficult childhood and grew up to control the New York-based bootlegging and the numbers racket businesses. He was threatened by mobster Lucky Luciano’s gang and also faced two tax evasion trials. His attempt to kill prosecutor Thomas Dewey got him murdered by the Commission.

 27 

Stanley Williams
12
Birthdate: December 29, 1953
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Shreveport, Louisiana, United States
Died: December 13, 2005

 28 
Angelo Bruno
(Gangster)

Angelo Bruno
5
Birthdate: May 21, 1910
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Villalba, Sicily, Italy
Died: March 21, 1980

Sicilian-American mobster Angelo Bruno led the Philadelphia crime family for 20 years. He was known as The Gentle Don or The Docile Don due to his dislike for violence. He was killed by a shotgun blast in his car, and his murder caused a mob war for 4 years.

 29 

Anthony Salerno
2
Birthdate: August 15, 1911
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: July 27, 1992

 30 
Thomas DeSimone
(Gangster)

Thomas DeSimone
6
Birthdate: May 24, 1950
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
Died: January 14, 1979

 31 

Vincent Gigante
8
Birthdate: March 29, 1928
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: December 19, 2005

 32 
Tony Accardo
(Gangster)

Tony Accardo
5
Birthdate: April 28, 1906
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States
Died: May 22, 1992

 33 
Johnny Torrio
(Gangster)

Johnny Torrio
6
Birthdate: January 20, 1882
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Irsina, Italy
Died: April 16, 1957

 34 
Ma Barker
(Matriarch of the Barker Family)

Ma Barker
4
Birthdate: October 8, 1873
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Ash Grove, Missouri, United States
Died: January 16, 1935

 35 
Sam Giancana
(Mobster)

Sam Giancana
6
Birthdate: June 15, 1908
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States
Died: June 19, 1975

Sam Giancana was an American gangster. From 1957 to 1966, Giancana was the boss of the Chicago Outfit. He played a major role in the Central Intelligence Agency's plot to kill Cuban leader Fidel Castro as the CIA sought his help in their bid to assassinate Castro. Over the years, Giancana has been depicted in films, TV series, and literature.

 36 
Carmine Galante
(Gangster)

Carmine Galante
1
Birthdate: February 21, 1910
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: July 12, 1979

 37 
Roy DeMeo
(Gangster)

Roy DeMeo
6
Birthdate: September 7, 1940
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: January 10, 1983

Roy DeMeo was an Italian-American gangster in the Gambino crime family of New York City. He was the leader of the DeMeo crew, a gang notorious for committing a series of brutal murders. He was involved in various illegal endeavors and was a silent partner in a peep show/prostitution establishment. His bullet-ridden body was found under mysterious circumstances in 1983. 

 38 
Joe Masseria
(Mafia Boss)

Joe Masseria
7
Birthdate: January 17, 1887
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Sicily
Died: April 15, 1931

Joe Masseria was an Italian-American Mafia boss who controlled the Genovese crime family from 1922 to 1931. He was killed in the Castellammarese War, which was fought for control over illegal activities in New York City. Since his death, Joe Masseria has been portrayed in several films like The Valachi Papers, Lucky Luciano, Mobsters, and Lansky.

 39 
Virginia Hill
(Organized crime figure)

Virginia Hill
10
Birthdate: August 26, 1916
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Lipscomb, Alabama, United States
Died: March 24, 1966

Virginia Hill was an American woman best remembered for her association with the Chicago Outfit crime organization. She served as the outfit's courier, passing important messages between mobsters, during the mid-1930s. She became the subject of a 1974 TV film. Her relationship with mobster Bugsy Siegel was dramatized in the 1991 movie Bugsy, where she was portrayed by Annette Bening.

 40 
Joseph Colombo
(Mafia Boss)

Joseph Colombo
6
Birthdate: June 16, 1923
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: May 22, 1978

 41 
Frank Nitti
(Gangster)

Frank Nitti
6
Birthdate: January 27, 1886
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Angri, Italy
Died: March 19, 1943

Frank Nitti was an Italian born-American mobster and one of Al Capone's main henchmen. Renowned for his leadership skills, Nitti succeeded Al Capone to become the boss of the Chicago Outfit. His life and work inspired the 1988 biopic Nitti: The Enforcer.

 42 
Sal Magluta
(Kingpin who ran South Florida from the 1970s to 1990s)

Sal Magluta
0
Birthdate: November 5, 1954
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Cuba

 43 
James Burke
(Mobster)

James Burke
3
Birthdate: July 5, 1931
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: April 13, 1996

 44 
Alvin Karpis
(Gangster)

Alvin Karpis
6
Birthdate: August 10, 1907
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Montreal, Canada
Died: August 26, 1979

Alvin Karpis was a criminal best remembered for leading the infamous Barker-Karpis gang in the 1930s. Renowned for his sinister smile, Karpis, who was nicknamed Creepy, was captured by the FBI in 1936. He was then sentenced to life imprisonment and was released on parole in 1969. He spent his later years writing memoirs like The Alvin Karpis Story.

 45 
Joseph Massino
(Criminal)

Joseph Massino
1
Birthdate: January 10, 1943
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: New York City, USA

 46 
Paul Vario
(Gangster)

Paul Vario
9
Birthdate: July 10, 1914
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: May 3, 1988
Paul Vario was an American gangster belonging to the New York-based Vario Crew of the Lucchese crime family. He and his brothers owned a number of legitimate businesses, including a restaurant, which served as a cover for their illegal dealings. He was eventually convicted of fraud and extortion.

 47 

Russell Bufalino
5
Birthdate: September 29, 1903
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Montedoro, Sicily, Kingdom of Italy
Died: February 25, 1994

 48 
Abu Salem
(Gangster known for murder of builder Pradeep Jain, 1993 Bombay Bombings)

Abu Salem
3
Birthdate: 1962 AD
Birthplace: Uttar Pradesh, India

 49 

Anthony Provenzano
4
Birthdate: May 7, 1917
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Lower East Side, New York, United States
Died: December 12, 1988
Anthony Provenzano, better known as Tony Pro, was a caporegime of the New Jersey faction of the Genovese crime family. He was close to Jimmy Hoffa, the director of the labor union Teamsters Union. The 2019  Martin Scorsese movie The Irishman featured actor Stephen Graham in Provenzano’s role. 

 50 
Frank Capone
(Gangster)

Frank Capone
8
Birthdate: July 16, 1895
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: April 1, 1924