Jhon Jairo Velasquez Vasquez alias "Popeye," one of the most trusted colleagues of Colombian drug kingpin Pablo Escobar, should “go back to jail," said Juan Manuel Santos, President of  Colombia.​ Vasquez had previously served 23 years and three months in jail before being released in August 2014.

According to a report by TeleSur, the Colombian president made the statement Wednesday. Vasquez was detained briefly early December after the capture of Juan Carlos Mesa-Vajello, one of the world’s most wanted drug kingpin. Vasquez was hosting a party in El Peñol, Antioquia, to celebrate Vajello’s 50th birthday when police raided the premises. However, the authorities did not find any proof connecting him to the Medellin-based drug cartel La Oficina de Envigado, headed by Mesa-Vajello. 

Following this, a new investigation was launched to explore Vasquez's possible connections with the drug cartel. According to a report by ABC News, prosecutors said Saturday that Colombian authorities were looking to re-arrest Vasquez on charges of parole violation after he was found partying with Mesa-Vajello, who was wanted by the U.S.

So who exactly is Vasquez?

Vasquez was born on April.15, 1962 in the municipality of Yarumal, Antioquia, Colombia. He went to the University of North Barranquilla after which he entered the School of NCOs of the Colombian Navy. He was then transferred to the Police Cadet School General Santander, where he attended only one semester. 

According to a report by Rolling Stone, Vasquez was a hitman for Escobar’s Medellin drug cartel. He was released from prison in 2014 after serving over two decades for charges related to trafficking, terrorism and the 1989 murder of Colombian presidential candidate Luis Carlos Galán. Vasquez claimed that he killed 300 people by his own hand and planned the killing of over 3,000 others. After 23 years in prison, he was released for his good behavior. After his release from prison, Vasquez became a controversial figure in Colombia. There were rumors that he still had connections with the Medellin underworld.

Vasquez runs a channel on Youtube, named "POPEYE_Arrepentido," where he uploads video blogs about Colombian, U.S., Mexican heads of state, on drug cartels and also gives a narrative about his own life.

The report stated that the former hitman wanted to relive his past by acting in movies. Vasquez reportedly said, “I like to shoot and I like the mafia. I like the adrenaline and I like crime.” 

He added, “I no longer want to do it in the streets; I don't want to kill anyone else. So I'll do it in the movies.”

Vasquez also acted in a movie titled “X Sicario Profesional” (Ex-Professional Assassin), which was about his own life. It was directed by Adolfo X, who was known for his mafia movies.

After acting in the movie, he said, "Everyone says, how are you going to make a movie with a gangster like Popeye? I'm a legend. Let it hurt whoever it hurts. This legend is searching for a space in society through film.”