Ms-13 Essay

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Pages: 5

MS-13 final

MS-13 History and Origins

The Mara Salvatrucha gang originated in Los Angeles, in the 1980s by Salvadoran immigrants in the neighborhood between Pico and Wilshire also know as the city's Pico-Union neighborhood. They immigrated to the United States Due to a 12-year civil war in El Salvador, which resulted in over 100,000 deaths and over a million refugees(www.ms13gang.com). The Salvadorian refugees and immigrants predominantly settled in southern California and Washington, D.C. Some of the refugees and immigrants had ties with La Mara, a violent street gang from El Salvador. Others had been members the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMNL) during the El Salvadorian civil war(Rimmer, 2009). FMNL was made up of
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When we asked him why he had so many tattoos he said it is “to imprint you, to honor who you are.” Many members of MS-13 along with our informant had a tattoo of 3 dots. The three-dot tattoo signifies the three places MS will lead you: jail, hospital or the Cemetery(Rimmer, 2009). Our informant told of this early in the interview when we asked him what the gang believed in. All symbols are displayed right side up. To have a symbol or a name upside down is to show disrespect to the other groups(Sims). Some other notable tattoos are:
* Star patterns- Every point on the star is a year in prison served.
* Open tear drop- A gang member has been killed.
* Filled tear drop- A gang member killed, and the retaliation has been carried out.
* 13 or XIII or X3- Sureno 13 gang or for the 13th letter in the alphabet (M)
* Zip codes or area codes- Territory of a gang
* M- La eme or the Mexican mafia
* Black hand- Sureno 13
* Cross- Weapons supplier
* 3 pronged pitch fork- Enforcer
* 3 vertical lines- Robber
* 3 vertical lines with a 5 point star underneath- Kidnapper
* 3 vertical lines over 2 horizontal lines- Drug dealer
* Heart over “madre” (mother)- Executioner (Sims)
The most common hand sign used by MS members is the letter “M” formed