The Black Hand : The Bloody Rise and Redemption of Boxer Enriquez, a Mexican Mob Killer
An astonishing and groundbreaking look at the Mexican Mafia, The Black Hand is an unprecedented story of depravity, violence, and redemption
Rene "Boxer" Enriquez grew up on the violent streets of East L.A., where gang fights, robberies, and drive-by shootings were fueled by rage, drugs, and alcohol. When he finally landed in prison--at the age of nineteen--Enriquez found an organization that brought him the respect he always wanted: the near-mythic and widely feared Mexican Mafia, La Eme.
What it saw in Enriquez was a young man who knew no fear and would kill anyone--justifiably or not--in the blink of an eye. That loyalty and iron will drove him up the ranks as a mob enforcer and ultimately to the upper echelons, where he would help rule for nearly two decades.
He helped La Eme become the powerful and violent organization that it is now, with a base army of approximately sixty thousand heavily armed gang members who control the prison system and a large part of California crime. Arguably the most dangerous gang in American history, its reach is growing.
And now award-winning investigative journalist Chris Blatchford, with the unprecedented cooperation of Rene Enriquez, reveals the inner workings, secret meetings, and elaborate murder plots that make up the daily routine of the Mafia brothers. It is an intense, never-before-told story of a man who devoted his life to a bloody cause only to find betrayal and disillusionment.
After years of research and investigation, Blatchford has delivered a historic narrative of a nefarious organization that will go down as a classic in mob literature.
There is much to praise in this authorized biography of Rene Boxer Enriquez, penned by Peabody Award-winning journalist Blatchford (Three Dog Nightmare). While this is a superb cautionary tale about the dangers of youth falling into senseless gang violence, it also rates as a probing, redemptive story of Enriquez, a vicious, heroin-addicted killer for Los Angeles's largest criminal street gang, with 20,000 members involved in extortion, drug-dealing, vice and murder. Blatchford explores with grim accuracy Enriquez's criminal past, prison killings, turf wars and contract eliminations around the West Coast. But the book also reveals Enriquez and his crew's total commitment to hoodlum honor, the cost in lives and status, and the betrayals and intrigues both behind bars and out in society. This is a savvy account of Enriquez's arduous self-education and personal transformation from cold killer to a man who, in his own words, educates law enforcement and the public about a prison and criminal subculture that should scare the hell out of them. (Sept.)
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September 21, 2008
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