Saturday, August 8, 2009

La Eme--The Mexican Mafia, part 2--Links and Notes

Not really a post. Just some places to look for information. Updated January 26, 2011.

According to reports, this is not a gang that will usually show up curbside. The Mexican Mafia was orginally a prison gang formed in 1957 to protect hispanics from the white-only trusty system in Doyel vocational Center, a youth correction institution. Eventually they were able to develop a street presence through its camerados/comrades or colleagues, carnales/brother [although, hermano is brother, and carnal means 'fleshly' so I think this really connotes'stud', more possibly 'blood brother'; I have also seen 'cousin'/primo or 'buddy' as the translation]. The carnales further developed street presence in Southern California through a uniting/organizing effort to reduce market competition and gang wars, which tend to eat up profits. Hence the Surenos. As such, the Mexican Mafia are a cartel for organized crime, which uses the prison system as a vehicle for business.

In Texas, a separate group known as Mexikanemi follows a similar pattern. According to the Florida Department of Corrections, "Many intelligence personnel and officers confuse the EME with the Mexikanemi from Texas. Great care should be taken in evaluating these distinct groups. Some believe the Mexikanemi share identical tattoos and symbols with EME, but there are subtle differences to be taken into account when attempting to associate membership."  From what I can determine, their locations are different. Their alliances are different.  Their aims and their style, however, appear very similar.

Eme: The Mexican Mafia, La eMe. EMI: Mexicanemi.

Graffiti, Signs, Language:
M is the 13th letter of the alphabet. So, M-13, or X3. However, the street presence of the Mexican Mafia is generally carried out by others such as the Surenos, Sur-13.
Tattoo signs: The eagle and snake from the flag of Mexico. The "black hand" taken as homage to the Sicilian Mafia, only with the M added ("El Mano Negro") . Aztec languages, handsignals devised from American Sign Language, some use of the Aztec/Nahuatl language.

--2009, November 28--LATimes--Reputed MM leader charged in extortion scheme."
--2009, November 16--Pro8news--115 gang members arrested." Laredo. 500 profiles of gang members were obtained for use by other border authorities. ATF, ICE and Laredo PD. Mexican Mafia, Texas Syndicate and Hermanos Pistoleros gangs were the highest represented. This must be Mexicanemi.
--2008, BBC News--"Gang turncoat reveals violent secrets." Rene Enriquez, with the black hand tattoo of the gang, pictured right.
--2004, August 17--DEA--"Federal and Local Authorities 'Crack Down' on Hierarchy of the Mexican Mafia in San Antonio, 26 Arrests."  Heroin and cocaine. Gotta be Mexicanemi.

The Eagle and Snake from the medallion on the flag of Mexico, from Florida Department of Corrections.
The Black Hand tattoo, and 'Arta' below, BBC article credited above.
Pelican Bay ("P-Bay") photo from California Department of Corrections.

--See part 1, from the "Gangland" series.
--"Gangster Confidential" Excerpts of an interview with Enriquez, covering; Organization, Crew, Money Laundering, and Meetings. From American RadioWorks.
According to Mr. Enriquez, the Gang itself is very small, maybe 100 people; then there are the carnales, the "doers". After that, the Surenos, any Hispanic gang clique in South California.

Web Sites:
--American Radio Words, "Gangster Confidential," by Michael Montgomery. A series of interviews with Rene Enriquez. This is the home page for the interviews. Page also contains a short article by Suzanne Pankow "Brutal Control" and an assessment of Enriquez' motivations. (Montgomery thought he was smart and sincere.)
**Knowgangs. com does a good job explaining the causes of the prison gang's formation, and the difference between the Mexican Mafia and the Surenos. Both are listed in this article.
--Tom Diaz at Fairly Civil blog has three rambling posts "Mexican Mafia: National and Transnational Power" with good research, part 1, part 2, both on August 30, 2009, and part 3 on September 16, 2009.
--Diaz also writes on the Mexicanemi, part 1, then part 2.
--Tony Rafael wrote a book on the gang. The Mexican Mafia. This is his web site with interviews, reviews.
--Interview with Tony Rafael at the Southern Poverty Law Center, 2006.
--Wikipedia, "Mexican Mafia", and a a tiny, pitiful stub "Mexikanemi."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You seem to know quite a bit about the EME/Mexican Mafia.Have you read: The Black Hand, by Chris Blaichford? It's about the guy, that you've posted pictures and video of on you site; Boxer Enriquez. Enriquez just released a new book titled: Urban Street Terrorism, the Mexican Mafia and the Surenos. It is a must read for anyone that wants to know about the EMEs' current trends and organizational objectives. Urban Street Terrorism is currently available from and