They rob, kill, and terrorize, and they've left their bloody mark on American history. This is the world of the Gangland.
This new series tells the insider story of some of America's most notorious street gangs. We learn how they've shaped their times and affected the neighborhoods that they controlled. From the destruction wrought by the heroin kingpins in Harlem of the 1970's to today's most dangerous gang MS-13, which has spread out from the inner city to infect unexpected turf - suburban communities, gangs have a rich yet deadly history. They usually start out as a form of protection for their members and the community but then, grow predatory as they feed on the very people that they purport to defend. With exclusive interviews and rarely seen footage, this is a raw look at life inside these gangs - from those who live it and the agencies that are working to stop them.
The Latin Kings is a Chicago/New York-based street gang consisting of mainly of Spanish-speaking or Hispanic members. It began in the Chicago area in the 1940s as a means for Hispanics to protect themselves, their neighborhoods and their families.
By the 1970's, the Latin Kings came to be dominated by individuals engaged in criminal activity, and in particular, narcotics trafficking. The Latin Kings have since spread through all of Latin America and into Europe, specifically Spain.
In 1986, Luis Felipe, calling himself "King Blood," started a new chapter in New York while at Collins correctional facility. The Latin Kings grew into the thousands by the mid 1990s.
After a rampage in 1995 throughout New York City, dozens of members were arrested and charged with everything from arson to murder. Most plead guilty. "King Blood" was found guilty of all charges, including 8 counts of murder.
Through the late 90s, the Kings tried to polish its image, but was still teaming with crime. Latin King violence still runs amok in the prison system.