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Pablo Escobar’s former girlfriend sues production company behind Netflix series

‘Pablo Escobar: El Patrón del Mal’ on Netflix.
‘Pablo Escobar: El Patrón del Mal’ on Netflix. Caracol Television / Netflix

Pablo Escobar’s former girlfriend, Virginia Vallejo, has filed a lawsuit against the production company Caracol America, alleging the company stole her story for the Netflix series Pablo Escobar: El Patrón del Mal (Pablo Escobar: The Drug Lord).

The lawsuit, filed in Florida district court on Jan. 25, accuses Caracol of two counts of copyright infringement, saying the company borrowed information from Vallejo’s memoir for their show.

READ MORE: Pablo Escobar’s brother says ‘Narcos’ should ‘provide hit men’ for crew after location scout killed

According to the suit, Vallejo’s 2006 memoir Amando a Pablo, Odiando a Escobar (which translates to Loving Pablo, Hating Escobar) “details her relationship with Medellin cartel leader Pablo Escobar, and her co-operation with Colombian and United States authorities in prosecuting Alberto Santofimio Botero, ex-senator and ex-minister of justice, drug cartel bosses, and others.”

Vallejo claims that the Caracol American Productions series stole stories from her memoir without proper permission from her. According to the documents, Vallejo was in negotiations with the company originally, but they didn’t come to an agreement to allow the company to use her work.

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Her complaint alleges that the company still lifted scenes and narratives from the book anyway.

READ MORE: Netflix and Escobar family in trademark dispute over ‘Narcos’

“What is more, Caracol has made careful efforts to duplicate portions of Vallejo’s highly unique protected expressions by creating a would-be stand-in, fictional character – but Caracol could not even imagine a fictitious name that did NOT rhyme with Vallejo’s name,” the lawsuit reads.

The show switches the name of Escobar’s love interest to Regina Parego.

One scene that Vallejo specifically references in the lawsuit as being lifted from her memoir is one in which she receives a large number of flowers from Escobar.

READ MORE: Colombians outraged after Wiz Khalifa visits drug lord Pablo Escobar’s grave

In September, Roberto De Jesus Escobar Gaviria, brother of the infamous Colombian drug kingpin whose rise and fall are dramatized by the Netflix series, sued Netflix for $1 billion over a copyright claim against its series Narcos.

Gaviria claims that the show wasn’t authorized to use his brother’s likeness and story. He founded Escobar Inc., one year before Narcos premiered and filed for “successor-in-interest-rights” for his brother in the state of California.

Gaviria revealed that he and his attorneys are “in discussions” with a “scared” Netflix to meet his demand. If the streaming platform fails to meet his demands, Gaviria said “we will close their little show.”

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READ MORE: ‘Narcos’ location manager fatally shot in Mexico

The 2012 mini-series Pablo Escobar: El Patrón del Mal is available for streaming on Netflix. The series, which has 74 episodes, originally ran on Caracol TV in Colombia.

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