The Texas Syndicate prison gang was started at Folsom Prison (part of the California prison system) in the early 1970s. Although the Texas Syndicate was formed in California, it is very strong at the moment in Texas. This prison gang was formed in reaction to other prison gangs that existed in the California prison system. The activities of these other prison gangs led to the establishment of the Texas Syndicate. Other prison gangs such as the Mexican mafia and the Aryan Brotherhood were exerting much influence on naive inmates, thus the Texas Syndicate was set up in reaction to this state of affairs.
Members of the Texas Syndicate are mainly Mexican American in the Texas Department of Corrections. Although there is a rule to allow only Hispanics into the Texas Syndicate this is not strictly adhered to. The Texas Syndicate has a formal organizational structure and there are a set of written rules for members of this prison gang. A single member of the Texas Syndicate is referred to as “Carnal” while a group of members are referred to as “Carnales. ” A prison inmate who is recruited into the gang is called a “Cardinal,” and the leader of the gang is called the “Chairman.
” The Texas Syndicate is associated with the Texas Mafia and Dirty White Boys. Conversely the Texas Syndicate is opposed to the following gangs: Aryan Brotherhood; La Nuestra Familia; Mexican Mafia; Mexikanemi and; Mandingo Warriors. Tattoos are used in identifying members of the gang. The tattoos used in identifying members of the Texas Syndicate prison gang often have the alphabets “TS” located somewhere in the intricate design of the tattoo. The “TS” on the tattoo is only identified after careful examination- in other words, it is not easily noticed at a glance.
The Neta Association The Neta Association started around 1979 in Oso Blanco prison in Rio Pedras, Puerto Rico. The gang was established to protect feeble prison inmates who were being oppressed by members of another prison gang called, “G27. ” The gang uses the pretense of a cultural organization that is working in the interest of oppressed people to perpetuate its twisted ideals. On the whole members of the gang perceive themselves as oppressed members of a group who do not want to be governed by the US authority.
Members of the gang are often Puerto-Rican American or Hispanic. The Neta Association has an organizational structure which is made up of “a President, Vice President, Recruiter, Secretary, Sergeant at arms and an Enforcer. ” Members of the Neta Association are associated with Los Macheteros and they are opposed to members of the following gangs: Los Solidos and 20 Luv. The Neta Association started in Puerto Rico where it still exists but it is also found in prisons in the Northeast US as well as Florida.
The colours used in identifying members of the Neta Association include: red, white and blue. In some instances members of the Neta Association replace blue with black. Each of these colors used by members of the Neta Association has a specific meaning. None of the colors is used without reason. Red represents the blood that has been shed or will be shed. White stands for peace, serenity and harmony. Black has a more sorrowful meaning- it is used in honor of members of the Neta Association who have lost their lives for the sake of the prison gang.
This has a very strong significance among members of the Neta Association. On the 30th of every month members of the Neta Association come together to remember members of the gang who have passed on. Conclusion Having analyzed the activities of prison gangs in the preceding pages, the destructive tendencies of these groups come to the fore front. Research about prison gangs is difficult because members of prison gangs are not willing to disclose information about the group. Members of prison gangs are very secretive and often operate in stealth mode.
Also, it is difficult for researchers to infiltrate the group and undertake qualitative observation. Nonetheless, a lot is known about these prison gangs thus far. Such information is valuable in curtailing the activities of such groups. The US government needs to step up action in curtailing the activities of these prison gangs. Works Cited Beck, A. , Gilliard, D. , Greenfeld, L. , Harlow, C. , Hester, T. , Jankowski, L. , Snell, T. , Stephan, I. , & Morton, D. Survey of State Prison Inmates. Washington DC: Bureau of
Justice Statistics, U. S. Department of Justice 1991 Fleisher, S. , & Decker, S. Overview of the Challenge of Prison Gangs. Corrections Management Quarterly, 5, 1-9. 2001 Gilbert, S. Tattoo History: A Source Book. New York: Juno Books. 2000 Knox, G. W. A National Assessment of Gangs and Security Threat Groups (STGs) in Adult Correctional Institutions: Results ofthe 1999 Adult Corrections Survey. 1999 20 April 2009 <http://www. ngcrc. com/ngcrc/page7. htm> Pelz, M. E. , Pelz, C. T. , & Marquart, 1. W. Criminal Justice Consulting: RightWing
Extremism in the Texas Prisons: The Rise and Fall of the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas. 1998 20 April 2009 <http://www. cjconsultant. com/abt. htm> Spergel, I. A. The youth gang problem: A community approach. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. 1995 Valentine, B. Gangs and Their Tattoos: Identifying Gangbangers on the Street and in Prison. Colorado: Paladin Press. 2000 Zackasee, T. R. Prison Gang Tattoo Recognition: A Correction Officer’s Survival Guide An unpublished Master of Science thesis in Criminal Justice, Youngstown State University 2004