Exerts from Chapter 1, Prison Gangs in America, by Gabriel C. Morale
The Real History of the NF:
By late 1965-1967 the California Mexican Mafia or EME controlled many prison yards in the California Department of Corrections (CDC) and had already started to victimize Northern California inmates and inmates from Southern California who would not join their gang. Some EME members were against Mexicans victimizing Mexicans, especially some members from Maravilla, which was a large area of East Los Angeles. The 1st Nuestra Familia Mejicana Constitution was written between the lines of legal work. The draft was covertly smuggled out to others who voiced concerns about La EME's tactics.
Voted to the first Mesa or Board of the Organization was "Lips/Lil John/Juan" from San Gabriel Valley's Big Bassett gang, "Chalo" from Bakersfield (and EME Leader "Chy" Cadena's cousin), "Huero" from the West L.A.'s Clantone gang, "Freddy/Ferny/Wolf" Gonzalez from Los Angeles' Temple St. and San Diego, "Diara" from Paicoma in the San Fernando Valley, and "Black Jess" from Oxnard-Chiques. Note: All of these initial NFM leaders were from Southern California.
There was no North and South yet, it was NFM or EME, and that was it!
The Objectives of the NFM group according to their Constitution were: Social, Political, Economical, and Cultural. The NFM did have an alliance with the Black Family, which later was named the Black Guerilla Family, against the Mexican Mafia-Aryan Brotherhood Alliance. By 1967, many NFM members were being sent to San Quentin. This is about the time period of growing dissatisfaction with the EME and growing numbers of NFM.
"Black Bob" Vasquez, who was later an NF General, states he was introduced to the group and "Babo" Sosa was later elected as the sole "Nuestro General", but neither started the NF. There has been some historical misunderstandings about La Familia Cinco which was a separate group from the NF ran by an inmate named David Corona (FC was active until the mid-1970s as documented in the book). This NFM "Blooming Flower" was spreading forth in CDC at a time when the Mexican Mafia was dominant in controlling the Mexican-American inmate population and soon led up to confrontations around September 16, 1968, which is Mexican Independence and on December 17, 1972, which resulted in the death of Rodolfo "Cheyenne" Cadena at Chino Prison (CIM) Palm Hall.
This killing was depicted in the movie "American Me" with actor James Edward Olmos playing "Chy" as the character "Santana". White convict Joe Morgan's ( J.D. in the movie) power grew within the Mexican Mafia, but he and other EME did not have Cadena killed, it was done by the Nuestra Familia. In the mid-1970s the NF started to use younger Norteno 14s to do their bidding and by the late 1970s to early 1980s the Sureno 13s were doing a lot of work for La EME as more and more prison gang members were locked down in Segregation Units. By the 1980s, the Nuestra Familia recruited almost exclusively from Northern California. These historical events and blooodshed during this gang civil war between North and South are some of the main reasons that many young Mexican/Chicano kids fight today, they fight each other on the street and in prison, and sadly many really don't even know why.
Again, the NFM did not start at Folsom Prison, it started at Soledad and San Quentin in the mid-60s shortly after the start of the Vietnam War. Years later, Robert "Babo" Sosa was elected "Nuestro General" in the early 1970s, but he was not the original founder of the "Nuestra Familia Mexicana", "Familia Cinco", or "Blooming Flower". Sosa's followers revamped the "Structure" of the "Organization", revised the "NF Constitution", and created "14 Rules of the Warrior". (One of the main reasons the word Mexicana was dropped in NFM was because Sosa was Puerto Rican not Mexican, also they were many whites who were allowed to join the NF as long as they had no ties to the AB).
There was a RICO trial against Sosa and his Captains, including "Death Row" Joe Gonzales, and he was impeached. Later, his successors under "Black Bob" Vasquez and "Brown Bob" Viramontes reformatted the NF again and wrote the "XIV Bonds" at Folsom Prison and created the "Nuestra Raza". While the Fresno Regiment of the NF was big and the NF tried to control and tax drug dealers there during the 1970's, Fresno was not the first, nor the largest. By the early 1980's, much of the F-14 had already jumped off as the Fresno Bulldogs which is why NF call them "Bullfrogs". Several RICO Trials since have not caused "The Fall of the Nuestra Familia"....
One must be careful! There has been a lot of misinformation about these groups, sometimes even the info put out by the gangsters themselves, and sometimes they just do not know the true history of their origins. In March of 1997, a Nuestra Raza member was killed execution-style near Castroville. His hands were arranged to show the 1-4 so everybody would know that it was serious business! The orders were believed to come down from the Pen because he refused orders to kill his brother who was an NR drop out. He also refused to do a hit on a gang worker in Salinas who was criticizing the NF/Norteno Movement. They are pulling bigger and bigger jobs such as when a NF Capt. from Lodi, CA (indicted on a RICO statute) was schooling the younger Norteno guys how to do "cowboy operation robberies" and "function". NF and Nortenos are big into drug dealing and have their own "NF banks" and communications systems even in the most secure prisons.
The NF has been the subject of several RICO trials but it has not fallen off the map. As it has so many times before, it has reformatted and has spread to other states; it remains a Security Threat Group. There have been many defectors, or drop-outs, in the NF over the years from the rank of General down to Soldier. In 2001, another RICO indictment was handed down against twenty-one members of the NF after "Operation Black Widow". All eventually pled guilty and the leaders were incarcerated in the Federal ADX at Florence, CO. The catalyst for the case were several previously unconnected homicides in Sonoma County in Northern California, after the NF ordered execution of longtime NF Captain "Mikeo" Castillo who was not "taking care of business", and the murder of former NF General "Brown Bob" Viramontes. In July, 2008, self-professed NF Capt. Robert "Huero" Gratton who wrote a book called "The Rise and Fall of the Nuestra Familia", was killed in a car accident. The NF has been active outside of Northern Cali for decades longer than most people realize, but just keep a low profile, and often local LE is not educated about their presence.
An NF is an NF until death as their oath states:
If I lead, follow me.
If I hesitate, push me.
If they (EME/SUR) kill me, avenge me.
If I am a traitor, kill me!