Understanding East Coast Mexican gangs, Part 1
La Gran Raza La Gran Familia (LGF) Unknown or no affiliation
Part 1 of a 2-part series
La Gran Raza
La Gran Familia (LGF)
Unknown or no affiliation
Mexican gangs have been forming in the United States for as long as we have had Mexican immigrants. On the East Coast, however, Mexican gangs are virtually a recent phenomenon. In the past several years, East Coast cities have experienced an increase in the creation of gangs consisting of Mexican Nationals. These gangs are largely Border Brothers gangs.
In Spanish, Border Brothers are called "Hermanos de la Frontera." Border Brothers are usually illegal immigrants from the same region in Mexico or those who have illegally entered the United States at the same time. These Border Brothers have formed together for social interactions and protection. After a short time, they operate like any other gang.
Many of these Mexican gangs forming on the East Coast maintain strong ties to Mexico, Mexican traditions and their relatives across the United States. The favorite holiday among Mexican immigrants in the U.S. is Cinco De Mayo, the Fifth of May, which observes the Battle of Puebla, fought on May 5, 1862 against the French army's attempt to take over the town of Puebla. A 2,000-strong Mexican army of soldiers and local citizens armed only with farm tools, defeated 6,000 French Soldiers. Other important dates in the Mexican culture are Mexican Independence Day on Sept. 16 and Revolution Day on Nov. 20th. It is important for law enforcement officers to monitor such celebrations for gang activity while ensuring public safety.