Is Chucho Based on Griselda Blanco’s Actual Bodyguard?

In Netflix’s crime drama series ‘Griselda,’ Jesus “Chucho” Castro accompanies Griselda Blanco throughout her rise as one of the most influential and potent drug dealers in Miami as her bodyguard. Chucho gets involved in several “missions” for the “Godmother,” which range from her first deal in Miami to some of her most vicious assignments. Eventually, Chucho part ways with Griselda, only for the latter to distrust him. The drug trafficker sends her hitman Jorge “Rivi” Ayala-Rivera to kill him but the latter inadvertently murders Chucho’s two-year-old son Johnny. Chucho is based on one of Griselda’s real bodyguards and his experiences highlight the gravity of the Godmother’s crimes!

Chucho: Griselda’s Enforcer

Jesus “Chucho” Castro worked as an enforcer for Griselda Blanco for a considerable period. However, he eventually decided against parting ways with her, severing all the ties he had with the drug trafficker. The conflict between the two was piqued when Chucho decided against helping one of Griselda’s sons. When she learned about it, she allegedly sent Jorge “Rivi” Ayala to kill him. “Jesus turned him away. He said ‘I’ve separated. I’ve cut ties with you and your mom and you are not welcome here.’ Well, that was offensive to Griselda,” Nelson Andreu, retired West Miami Police Chief, told CBS News.

Even though Chucho hid for a while, Rivi and his men found him. “They pulled up alongside of him when he [Chucho] was on Dixie Highway, South of Dadeland. He sees a van pull up next to his. The sliding door opens and there is three guys with machine guns shooting. He leans forward. The kid [Johnny] sitting on the armrest. It was a Toronado. Brand new Toronado. When he goes forward the kid gets hit twice in the face. [He] falls to the floor. He’s able to get away from them in traffic,” Andreu told CBS News in another interview about Chucho’s son Johnny’s death. The former officer investigated the murder back in 1982.

Although Griselda couldn’t kill Chucho, her target, she was happy with Johnny’s death, according to Rivi. “At first she [Griselda] was real mad ’cause we missed the father [Chucho]. But when she heard we had gotten the son by accident, she said she was glad, that they were even,” the hitman told the police. “When they went back to Griselda and said we missed Jesus but we killed his son by mistake, she was ecstatic. She says ‘Good. That’s what he had that coming. He turned away my son what better way to get even than to kill his son.’ That’s the kind of ruthlessness and kind of demeanor that Griselda had,” Andreu added.

Chucho was eventually arrested and imprisoned. However, details concerning his arrest are scarce. Andreu was able to talk to him while he was in prison. Chucho told the then-officer about what he did after his son’s death. “He [Chucho] took the child home, cleaned him up. Put him in a bathtub full of ice and sat down on the bathroom floor holding the child’s hand all night until he decided what to do in the morning,” Andreu recalled. Chucho left his son’s body at a Miami mosque for the police. “He was wrapped in a blanket, had a couple of roses, and his passport in his hands on top of chest,” the officer added.

According to a feature published by the Sun Sentinel, several “friends” said that Chucho wanted to avenge Johnny’s death by killing Griselda. Her unsuccessful hit on Chucho was an indication of how murderous Griselda was. “She murdered people at the drop of a hat. She would kill anybody who displeased her, because of a debt, because they screwed up on a shipment or she didn’t like the way they looked at her,” Stephen Schlessinger, an Assistant US Attorney who prosecuted Blanco, told the Miami Herald.

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