It's a man's world, but these women ruled it! Check out the Top 5 women gangsters of New York.
Stephanie St. Clair aka Queenie aka Madame St. Clair was the numbers queen of Harlem. She was Creole (African and French descent). She was a female boss and sometimes-gangster. She used strategy and force to keep other gangsters, like Dutch Schultz, out of Harlem. According to the Mob Museum,
"By 1930, she was reportedly worth $300,000 (the purchasing power of about $4.3 million today)."
When she retired, she passed her operation on to her lead enforcer Ellsworth "Bumpy" Johnson. Cicely Tyson played her in the 1997 hood classic movie "Hoodlum."
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Arlyne Brickman, who was Jewish, grew up in East Harlem in the early 1930s. Working for the mob, she was a numbers runner, drug dealer, and even a loan shark. No matter how gangsta she was, she faced discrimination in the Sicilian-run mob because of her Jewish background. She ultimately turned on her life of crime and the criminals she worked with, becoming an informant. In 1992, she told the story of her life in crime in "Mob Girl: A Woman's Life In the Underworld."
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Griselda Blanco aka La Reina de la cocaína aka La Madrina aka the Black Widow aka the Cocaine Godmother and the Queen. Although based in Miami, Griselda frequently ran her business through New York. As a matter of fact, in 1973 she was arrested in New York for drug trafficking. Her crew imported billions, yes you heard right, billions of dollars worth of cocaine, according to The Mob Museum. She allegedly committed anywhere from 40 to 200 murders during her reign. "Her drug operation was one of the largest of the dozen so-called Colombian 'Mafias' in the United States," according to The Mob Museum. She killed her three husbands, which is how she earned the nickname The Black Widow. On September 3, 2012, she was assassinated in Medellin, Columbia, at a butcher shop.
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You may have never heard of Cheng Chiu Ping aka Sister Ping, but she is known as a heartless human trafficker. That's how she earned her nickname, "the Snakehead.” She was born in Fujianand came to the United States illegally from Hong Kong in 1981. She smuggled around 3,000 illegal Chinese immigrants into the United States. She amassed a $40 million empire in the 80s.
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Fredericka Mandelbaum took a boat from her home, the German state of Prussia, to New York City in 1850. She and her husband were very poor, but then she began her hustle. She took to a life of crime in 1857, after the collapse of the financial system in New York. She trained children to become thieves and pickpockets, according to Refinery 29. Her minions were so good, she bought a shop to resell the stolen goods. She was slick with it too, becoming friends with law enforcement. She became well-known in the Jewish community. In 1884, her house of cards fell down, as she was busted by a private detective. She jumped bail and lived the rest of her life out in Canada.
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