By - Barbara Hetzer

(FORTUNE Magazine) – Some famous --and infamous names, such as members of the Mafia, are not on FORTUNE's list of billionaires, even though they have supposedly amassed huge piles of money. Their riches are hard to prove and impossible to trace. Among probable billionaires who live outside the law, the most notorious are three Colombians: Pablo Escobar, 37, Jorge Ochoa, 38, and Carlos Lehder Rivas, also 38. The infamous trio allegedly got rich by smuggling up to 15 tons of cocaine into the U.S. and Europe each month. Of this unsavory crew, the only one whose money has failed to preserve his freedom is Lehder, who idolizes Adolf Hitler and John Lennon. (He commissioned a statue of the slain Beatle with a bullet in the chest for display in a hotel he owns in his hometown of Armenia; the hotel has burned but the statue is still there.) Colombian police and soldiers arrested Lehder earlier this year at a hideaway and shipped him to Florida, where he faces federal narcotics charges that could lock him up for good. In a preliminary court appearance, the reputed cocaine king pleaded poverty and appealed for government aid to pay his lawyer. U.S. Attorney Robert W. Merkle quickly pointed out the $6,000 Rolex watch on Lehder's wrist. In many parts of the world, corruption often leads to wealth for those who make the laws as well as those who break them. Ferdinand Marcos, the ousted Philippine leader, is believed by the government of President Corazon Aquino, , his beset successor, to have siphoned at least $10 billion from the national treasury. Aquino is hounding Marcos and his wife, Imelda, she of the thousand pairs of shoes, in their exile in Hawaii. A big chunk of the loot is believed hidden in Swiss bank accounts, records of which will soon be accessible because of a recent Swiss court ruling. But the well-heeled Imelda denies that Switzerland is the end of the rainbow. In an eight-page proposal for her memoirs that she has sent to U.S. publishers, she declares: ''You can search the deepest and darkest vaults in Switzerland, you can comb the length and breadth of the United States and you can dig up all 7,100 islands of the Philippines, but you won't find it. Only Ferdinand and I know where the hidden wealth is deposited.'' Her agent says Imelda is talking about intangibles, like love. Among other chiefs of state accused of lining their pockets is Mobutu Sese Seko, the reigning president of Zaire, second-largest country in sub-Saharan Africa and one of the richest in natural resources. Mobutu, or Le Guide, as he is often called, is reportedly worth $5 billion and owns mansions in Switzerland, France, and Spain. That's a pile of money to have collected in a nation where the average wage in Kinshasa, the capital, is only $1 a day. In Mexico, too, power traditionally brings cash -- and immunity. Former President Jose Lopez Portillo is widely believed to have accumulated more than $1 billion during his six-year term, 1976 to 1982, but no one has tried to prove it. Amid the economic turmoil in his last year in office, when Mexico nearly defaulted on its foreign debt, Lopez Portillopromised to ''defend the peso like a dog.'' Shortly thereafter, he devalued the currency, instituted foreign exchange controls, and eventually took over the banks. When he built a lavish estate high atop a hill in Mexico City, outraged citizens dubbed it ''Dog Hill.'' Haiti is another impoverished country that managed to make its leader rich. Deposed dictator Jean-Claude ''Baby Doc'' Duvalier and his wife fled to France in 1986, where they still flaunt an extravagant lifestyle. They reside in a rented villa on the sunny Riviera and tool about in a $121,000 Ferrari Testarossa. No one can say just how much wealth Baby Doc has to comfort him in exile. It is thought to be as high as $1 billion, though the 15 court cases filed up to now -- forming a 17-volume dossier of 9,000 documents -- accuse him of embezzling a mere $120 million. ''That's what can be proven so far,'' says a lawyer for Strook & Strook & Lavan, the Haitian government's legal counsel. The sum includes $10 million in U.S. property, such as an apartment in Manhattan's Trump Tower, a yacht, and a collection of Haitian primitive paintings in a Washington, D.C., warehouse.