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Rene Enriquez was a leader in one of America’s most violent gangs, the Mexican Mafia. He’s serving 20 years to life in California for murders he committed for the gang. While in prison, Enriquez rose to a powerful position in the gang. But then he had a change of heart. Over the past year and a half, American RadioWorks’ Michael Montgomery has been following Enriquez's struggle to leave the gang life. Here are excerpts from their interviews.

"A man has to be more than the worst thing he's ever done."
- Rene Enriquez


The Mexian Mafia initially formed as a prison gang, but it expanded to run operations on the outside, too. Rene Enriquez explains how leaders in jail control life in prison and crime on the street.


Rene Enriquez says the Mexican Mafia maintains control through violence.


Rene Enriquez says alliances within the gang began to fracture, and he began to have doubts about his life in the Mexican Mafia.


Rene Enriquez talks about his new life outside the gang.


Rene Enriquez is still in jail, but he's switched sides and is advising police on gang investigations. His court testimony has helped convict other members of the Mexican Mafia. But he doubts that the gang can be crushed.