REPORT: Gangs infiltrate US military

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Hell’s Angels graffiti written on the back of a military vehicle in Iraq. / FBI

Gang members have been signing up with the United States Armed Forces, posing a “significant criminal threat” to law enforcement, according to a report by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

“Gang infiltration of the military continues to pose a significant criminal threat, as members of at least 53 gangs have been identified on both domestic and international military installations,” the report says, resulting in American gang graffiti in Iraq, among other things.

Every branch of the military contains some gang members, the FBI reported, but most gang members join the Army, the Army Reserves, and the U.S. National Guard. And gang member enlistment doesn’t require a sinister intention. “Many street gang members join the military to escape the gang lifestyle,” says the FBI, while others join at the behest of a court “as an alternative to incarceration.”

But the military sometimes proves a bad environment for gang members, who “often revert back to their gang associations once they encounter other gang members in the military.”

Numerous U.S. gangs, according to the report, “advise members without criminal records to join the military for necessary weapons and combat training.” Military deployments, in the event, end up placing gang members alongside other members of the armed forces on active duty.

Gang membership in the U.S. military has resulted in “incidents of weapons theft and trafficking,” the FBI warns, which “may have a negative impact on public safety or pose a threat to law enforcement officials.”

You can see a list of gangs affiliated with branches of the military below. For reference, OMG stands for “Outlaw Motorcycle Gang.”

Gang NameTypeMilitary Branch(s)
18th Street GangStreetArmy, Marines, Navy
Aryan BrotherhoodPrisonArmy, Marines, Navy
Asian BoyzStreetArmy
Asian CripsStreetArmy
Avenues GangStreetMarines
BandidosOMGArmy, Marines
Barrio AztecaPrisonMarines
Black DisciplesStreetArmy, Marines, Navy
Black Guerilla Family*PrisonArmy
BloodsStreetArmy, Army Reserves, Coast Guard, Marines, Navy
CripsStreetArmy, Air Force, Marines, Navy
Devils DisciplesOMGUnknown
East Side LongosStreetArmy, Special Forces
Florencia 13StreetArmy, Marines
Fresno BulldogsStreetNational Guard, Marines
Gangster DisciplesStreetArmy, Marines, Navy, National Guard
Georgia Boys (Folk Nation)StreetArmy
Haitian MobStreetArmy
Hells AngelsOMGAll branches
Iron HorsemenOMGArmy
Juggalos/ICPStreetArmy, Air Force
Korean Dragon FamilyStreetMarines
Latin KingsStreetArmy, Army Reserves, Marines, Navy
Legion of DoomOMGAir Force
Life is WarStreetArmy
Los ZetasStreetArmy
Maniac Latin DisciplesStreetMarines
Mexican Posse 13StreetArmy
Military MisfitsOMGMarines, Navy
MongolsOMGMarines, Navy
Moorish NationSeparatistArmy
MS-13StreetArmy, Marines, Navy
NorteñosStreetArmy, Marines, National Guard, Navy
OutlawsOMGAll branches
PeckerwoodsStreetMarines, Navy, National Guard, Reserves
Red DevilsOMGArmy/ Coast Guard
Simon City RoyalsStreetNavy
Sons of HellOMGMarines
Sons of SamoaStreetArmy
Southside LocosStreetArmy
SureñosStreetArmy, Marines, Navy
Tango BlastPrisonArmy*
Texas SyndicatePrisonArmy, Marines
Tiny Rascal GangstersStreetArmy
United Blood NationStreetArmy
VagosOMGArmy, Marines, Navy
Vatos LocosStreetArmy
Vice LordsStreetArmy
Wah Ching GangStreetArmy
WarlocksOMGAir Force, Marines

* Only gang graffiti was identified




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