Many philosophers and anthropologists agree that gang culture is highly based on family, that is how the gang recruits young people. Members prey upon a youth culture that has very little to no family structure at home. Like most families gangs like the Crips, Hell’s Angels, and MS-13 have their own rituals but often with an intense and violent twist. The violent aspects of organized gangs are what has drawn negative attention to them from law enforcement over the years.
There are a ton of violent ways that gangs have made their marks across the entire world. In South and Central America gangs it is common that violence is prominent in each and every cartel. In America and Asia, violence is also prominent and generally involves guns. A lot of the gangs whose rituals are listed here began in prison as a way for prisoners to survive overcrowding or to solve internal violence with other prisoners.
Other gangs are racist ways for radical Americans to keep white supremacy alive. All of the gangs on this list take part in dangerous and illegal activities, making them nothing to look up to. This list compiles the most physically and mentally violent things that the most dangerous gangs in the world ritualize.
15. Chinese Triads 36 Oaths
The Triads originated in the 18th century and mainly battle against the Yakuza in China and surrounding Asian countries. The term ‘triad’ refers to Triple Union Society that refers to Heaven, Earth, and Man. After Triads are initiated into the counterfeiting, blackmailing gang they must adhere to “the 36 Oaths”. These promises, mostly made to the boss and their fellow brothers, are all based around protecting the secrets of the Triads and the Hung family as well as helping any brother in need.
Despite these loving promises that Chinese Triads make to each other the gang is bloodthirsty and responsible for drug trafficking and other major crimes around the world. Most recently Triads were connected to healthcare fraud in Japan. Four members were found to be conducting this operation and were arrested by authorities. The Triads are found in China, Vietnam, Malaysia, the UK, Australia, Korea, France, and even as far as New Zealand.
14. Hells Angels Membership Requirements
There are some somewhat random official requirements of those who want to be prospects for the Hells Angels. Prospective members must have a driver’s license, own a motorcycle, have no record of applying to be a police officer or guard, and not be a child molester. Since the Hells Angels have connections to the white supremacist organization Aryan Brotherhood it is an unofficial rule that Hells Angels be caucasian. This is also the reason that members of the Hells Angels are fond of Nazi symbolism. Four phases mark the recruitment of new members until they are invited into the motorcycle gang. First are
“hang-arounds” which allows prospective members to come to some club events. Associates are “hang-arounds” that have acquired the interest of a Hells Angels member. Prospect comes next and this is an official recruit of the Hells Angels that has not yet been patched in and therefore they can’t vote in club meetings. Then finally, you get patched into the gang.
13. Ku Klux Klan
This racist white supremacist group is widely recognized as a terrorist organization but they have gone underground since the election of Barack Obama. Many are familiar with the common Ku Klux Klan practice of burning crosses. This practice dates back to medieval Europe, specifically Scottish clans, who would light crosses on fire along the hillsides as an act of rebellion against military rivals or as a way to rally the troops. Modern Klan groups always refer to cross burning rituals as “cross lighting” as not to offend Christians. The Ku Klux Klan actually believes that their practice is a fiery representation of their love for Jesus Christ. The very first reported cross burning took place on Thanksgiving Eve in Georgia, the year was 1915. Since the late 1980s, there have been 1700 instances of cross burnings across the United States, many of which were burnt on the lawns of innocent African American families.
12. Numbers Gang
Numbers Gang is a prison gang formed in South Africa primarily operating out of the Western Cape prison of Pollsmoor, though many think that they run all South African prisons. When a member of the Numbers Gang (labeled 28s, 27s, 26s) transfers prisons they go through a rigorous ordeal to establish themselves in their new place of incarceration. It all starts when the new prisoner is taken into his new cell, he must ask the cell cleaner, “Who are you?”. If the cleaner is a 28 he says “I am a son of Nongoloza, that he works by night.” If he is a 27 he states the same phrase replacing the last two words with “by day” and that he is the son of Kilikjian. This is all a test to prove that the prisoner is actually a member of the Numbers Gang, everything hinges on the prisoner’s knowledge of the right language and you better not get it wrong!
There was an FBI task force set up to monitor and dismantle the dangerous gang MS-13. While investigating, the FBI captured some of the brutal rituals that the gang members go through when being initiated. Those who are being courted are called chequos and full-fledged MS-13 members are called homeboys. In the initiation ritual chequos first must carry out one assassination against a rival gang member, then homeboys vote on whether or not the chequo can join. Once the vote is final, and the chequo is invited into the gang, the real initiation starts. While one homeboy counts slowly down from 13 other homeboys beat the chequo mercilessly. If he survives then he is welcomed into the gang as a fellow homeboy. When it was all finished, fellow homeboys would say “welcome to the Mara” and hold up devil horn gang signs. This 13-second-beating is also used as a punishment when a homeboy acts out.
10. Aryan Brotherhood
The Aryan Brotherhood formed when white men found that they didn’t have a gang to join in prison culture. Now the syndicate can boast over 10,000 members both in and out of prison according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The organization can vary worldwide but something that all Aryan Brothers have in common is that they are white. A former Aryan Brother came out to the press about exactly what he had to do in order to become a member of the gang in the late ‘70s. This man stated that he had to kill someone in a “spectacular fashion” before vowing to never leave the group. The murder was meant to be like a public execution of a rival gang member and was generally a person of the opposite race. This witness was made out to be a liar and is no longer trusted as a reliable source, but we’re still willing to bet that there are some violent rituals in this prison gang.
9. Knights Templar Cartel
Informants told authorities about some exceptionally disturbing initiation rites that went down in 2014 with the dangerous Mexican gang. The Cartel was known for trafficking humans for organ harvesting and in line with that horrific crime, they forced new members to eat a children’s heart in order to join. It was Nazario Moreno, known as El Chayo, who came into the room where this informant was and told those who were there “Today we are going to eat a person’s heart.”
Before starting Knights Templar, Moreno started the dangerous La Familia Cartel also based out of Mexico. In the years that have elapsed since this story, El Chayo was assassinated and many of the higher ups in the Knights Templar have been arrested on drug trafficking charges. Despite this blatant disregard for human life the Knights Templar live by an immense ethical code. There is an entire 22-page book that holds the rules and regulations of those who call themselves The Knights Templar.
8. United Blood Nation
Officially known as the United Blood Nation, Bloods are a prison gang that first formed in 1993 as a response to the prominence of the Latin Kings in the New York City jail system on Rikers Island. The United Blood Nation officially formed in Riker’s George Mochen Detention Center, called G.M.D.C., a space that was used to segregate problem inmates from the general population. The Bloods have since expanded to have many ‘sets’ across the nation with a prominent set in Los Angeles.
The Nine Trey Gangsters gang is a known set of the United Blood Nation as is the Sex Money Murda gang that was started by OG Pistol Pete. It was the formation and dominance of the Bloods that started the Crips in Los Angeles, California. After joining the Bloods a member must burn three circles in a triangular shape on to their upper right arm or right hand to show pride in their gang affiliation.
7. Los Zetas
This Mexican criminal syndicate is surrounded by rumors of horrifyingly brutal cannibalistic rituals. The United States government believes that Los Zetas are the most technologically advanced, violent, efficient, ruthless, and downright dangerous cartel operating in Mexico. Currently, Los Zetas are the largest drug cartel in terms of geographical presence, even larger than the Sinaloa Cartel. It was 2014 when a former killer for Los Zetas confessed to his local priest about his specialty in the gang, cutting up victims while they were still alive. The exorcist and priest reported that this man claimed he enjoyed cutting people up while alive and that it took four sessions to rid this former gang member of his demons.
6. Wah Ching
This Chinese secret society originated in San Francisco, California in the early ‘60s when they controlled most of the Asian American crime in San Francisco and Los Angeles respectively. It seems that one of the tried and true rituals of Wah Ching members is to beef with other Asian American gangs. Wah Ching founder Danny “Ah Pai” Wong was assassinated by a Wo Hop To assassin.
Since Wo Hop To were a bigger gang the Wah Ching went on their first migration to Los Angeles. In their time operating out of Los Angeles Wah Ching began feuding with the Asian Boyz, leading to “Summer Madness” on September 20, 1998. Add to that list the Vietnamese Boyz and Sun Yee On as two other prominent gangs that feud with the Wah Ching.
In 1977 another prominent Wah Ching assassination attempt devastated The Golden Dragon, a Chinatown restaurant in San Francisco. The hit was called by the Joe Boys Gang, which was yet another gang rival of the Wah Ching.
5. The Latin Kings
The roots at the Almighty Latin King and Queen Nation date back to 1943 in Chicago, Illinois and in the beginning, it consisted mostly of Chicano and Mexican males. The Latin Kings gang officially formed in 1964. Two factions eventually formed out of the original gang, King Manifesto and Constitution (KMC) and Bloodline in New York City. One of the most shocking portions of the Latin Kings is their “Kingism” ideology, more specifically in three stages or cycles in life that constitute Kingism. The Primitive Stage is where the ‘warrior’ acts on impulse defined as a time of gang banging, getting high, and being recognized as big and bad.
The next stage is The Conservative Stage is when a King will calm down and possibly get married and the last is The New King Stage. The New King is aware and decisive and is ready to start a revolution. This philosophy is well maintained and is one reason why The Latin Kings have lasted this long.
4. Sinaloa Cartel
Mostly known for drug trafficking, money laundering, and organized crime the Sinaloa Cartel was established in the mid-’80s. With notorious leader “El Chapo” at the helm the Sinaloa Cartel, they have been at the head of countless massacres that show a brutal disregard for human life. The Boca Del Rio massacre refers to 35 tortured bodies left with a Narco banner by the Sinaloa cartel.
Nueva Laredo massacres one and two happened less than a month apart from one another and saw 28 people die. The Nueva Laredo massacres were messages sent to Los Zetas from El Chapo. In retaliation, Los Zetas took nine lives during this tumultuous time.
The Sinaloa cartel has also killed protesters, taken innocent lives with random gunfire, and engaged in countless violent gun battles. Their most brutal ritual was the daily violence inflicted at the hands of El Chapo. Now that he has been killed we will see if the violence dies down.
3. 18th Street Gang
Also known as Calle 18, Barrio 18, La18, or Mara-18 the 18th Street Gang is a violent transnational gang that at times has ruled Los Angeles, El Salvador, and Honduras. It might be true that the 18th Street Gang started as a Mexican gang but it soon picked up a prominently Central American following. Their brutal power plays rank high on the disturbing rituals that gangs have been known to carry out. In 2015 Barrio 18 staged a violent protest to flex their power in El Salvador which resulted in the terrorization of countless Salvadorans. The gang members overtook multiple city buses, killing a total of five drivers. The terrorist attack ended up costing $60 million worth of damage to the city. Strikes such as these have become common in South America and although the largest amount of 18th Streeters reside in Southern California, most of the massacres and saddest stories have been happening in South America.
There are a couple of brutal rituals that various sets of Crips gangs across the country take part in. Tookie Williams wrote a book entitled Blue Rage Black Redemption where he broke down the many facets of Crips life. Williams was one of the earliest leaders in the West Side Crips. Williams wrote that he would force Crips recruits to engage in a battle with rival gang members.
Another former Crip Sanyika Shakur wrote a book entitled Murder where he writes of his initiation task into the Eight Trey Gangster Crips. He was “jumped” into the gang meaning he was beaten mercilessly by his future family members, the only condition was that he defend himself. Only after enduring the beating was he then assigned the task of shooting a rival gang member with a pump shotgun.
The Yakuza are one of the most feared gangs in the world because of their immense power. Many Yakuza hold high ranking positions in the Japanese media and other influencing areas of the country. They are well known for bribery and their brutal form of large-scale bribery has been given its own name: Sokaiya. The first step in sokaiya is to buy into a company with just enough shares to get on the shareholders meeting. After this minor entry into the company, the Yakuza will dig up as much dirt on the leaders as possible. They will then threaten the leaders with whatever they can find, leveraging the severe outcast of shame upon them in exchange for large amounts of money. To collect, Yakuza will host an event and charge the victims of their blackmail with astronomically priced tickets. This form of blackmail has become well-known among many elite members of Japan’s society.