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International Gangs In CPS?

According to this (PDF) Congressional report, two predominantly Latino gangs [Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) and the 18th Street gang (M-18)] have spread from LA to the rest of the country and have become international. Are they in Chicago, much less CPS? I have no idea.

2 comments

Geroge N. Schmidt wrote 6 years 37 weeks ago

International Gangs In CPS?

The gangs in CPS have been international for generations. Jeff Fort was dealing with Libya before Kadaffi went straight (and got a deal because of his nation's oil). Chicago's Latino gangs (along with, especially, their Asian members) have always been internationalists.

But there is something mediagenic about Los Angeles gangs moving into the Chicago area (mostly the suburbs). The Los Angeles gangs always enjoyed seeing themselves in the movies, while the Chicago gangs generally banned such marketing and hype. Any gang leader -- like the Disciples' Larry Hoover, who tried to set up straight front groups like "Better Growth and Development" years ago) learned the hard way that Chicago doesn't like gang members making news in The New York Times.

Unless they control the prisons (and Cook County Jail) like the indigenous gangs currently do (and have since Richard M. Daley was State's Attorney; go figure...), these "international" gangs won't move far in Chicago or in the major suburbs. One of the keys to the current extent of the major gangs is the fact that public budget cutbacks and boneheaded criminal sentencing guidelines have turned many of the jails and prisons over to the gangs. One of the reasons the gangs like the suburbs is that the police forces are smaller (and with the recent cutbacks in Cook County budgets, this situation has gotten even worse).

(And Prison privatization only makes things worse, by the way, for the Arne Duncan and "New Schools" types who think the "market" should rule the world).

Anyway, the Chicago gangs are already "international". When things get hot in Chicago, the Latin Dragons (a branch of the Folks), for example, send their cadre to Mexico City for what amounts to (using military jargon) AIT. (If you know SNAFU and FUBAR you know what AIT means...).

Most of the time, the Salvadorean gang bangers in Chicago wind up in either the current "People" (Latin Kings, etc.) or "Folks" (MLDs, etc.) and not in some imported thugnation. One young Salvardoran I knew years ago was given a zone (Montrose Paulina, back then the "MPLKN", sort of like a franchise) by the Latin Kings after he lost both his mother and his brother to the gangs. (Mom was shot to death; brother beaten to death with a golf club).

Anyone who wants to get some of the flavor of this stuff (I'm told you can never replicate the smells) can always watch Edward James Olmos's masterpiece "American Me." All the gang bangers you know have already seen it, as a warning not to misbahave, in or out of prison and jail.

It's like the black gang leaders watching "The Godfather" over and over.

Willis wrote 6 years 37 weeks ago

International Gangs In CPS?

My understanding is that both of these gangs are based in El Salvador, I am not sure that community is large enough inside of Chicago to allow these gangs to go up against existing Hispanic gangs. I have worked at Gage Park, and Foreman in the past and I can only recall having had a few kids from El Salvador. Maybe there are other CPS schools with a larger population of El Salvadorans.

There was a PBS show about MS-13 about a year ago. They completely ran the prision they were in. I mean their leaders gave interviews like they were the wardens, the prision guards stayed on the fence. Everything inside was controled by MS-13. They killed rivals without blinking, very scary indeed.