Gang Information

Member Profile
  • Male
  • Hispanic majority
Identifiers
  • Color red
  • Number 14
  • X4
  • XVI

Nortenos

History

“Norte” is the Spanish word meaning “north” with “Norteño” meaning “one from the north or northerner.” The term Norteño describes gangs aligning themselves with Northern California. This term was coined in the 1970′s as a result of a California prison war between the Mexican Mafia and the Nuestra Familia. This war ended in a territorial division between gang members from northern California (Norteños or northerners), aligning themselves with the Nuestra Familia, and those from Southern California, aligning themselves with the Mexican Mafia.

Demographics

The majority of Norteño gang members are male and of Hispanic origin. However, whites, blacks, and other ethnic minorities are also found to pledge allegiance to Norteño gangs. The age of gang members covers a broad spectrum from children, who are as young as 9 or 10 years old, to adults, who are in their 50′s. Although, most Norteño gang members are in their late teens to early 30′s. Norteños are found in nearly every state but are most dominant in the west, specifically California, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.

Identifiers

Norteño gang identify themselves with the color red and have tattoos that usually contain the number and/or words norte, Norteño, 14, X4, or XVI. The number 14 represents the 14th letter of the alphabet N, which denotes the Nuestra Familia alliance. The Nuestra Familia is also referred to as La ENE, which is Spanish for the letter N. The Nuestra Familia was formed in Soledad, California in 1965 to protect Hispanics in prison from the Mexican Mafia. Regardless of how the number 14 appears, the meaning is the same; its alliance is to Northern California.

GALLERY



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  • Tattoo on calves of an X and a 4 for Norteno