The ABT was founded in the early 1980s when a group of white Texas inmates petitioned the California Aryan Brotherhood for permission to establish a chapter in Texas. Although the California Aryan Brotherhood refused the request, the Texas inmates still formed the ABT.
Since its founding, the ABT has made several attempts to change its name or hide behind the umbrella of a religious organization, such as the Aryan Reich or the Church of Aryan Christian Heritage. Although the gang experienced severe internal problems and a high dropout rate shortly after these unsuccessful attempts, ABT still remains a formidable group in and out of the Texas prison system.
The ABT is led by a steering committee comprised of five offenders, each of whom is responsible for a specific geographic area and maintains control of the group’s activity in and out of the prison system. The steering committee is also responsible for making all rules and regulations for the organization.
Although the ABT uses “Aryan Brotherhood”in its name, it is not associated with prison gangs in other state and federal correctional facilities that use the same name. It is considered a Texas prison gang and uses the words “of Texas” to distinguish itself from other similar groups. It should be noted that ABT members are incarcerated in various state and federal prisons.
ABT uses a modified version of the Aryan Nations logo
The ABT insignia or tattoo depicts a shield with a Nordic dagger running through it, the letters “A” and “B” over the top of the shield, and the words “of Texas” located under the shield. All members are given the choice to put on the tattoo or not. Many have chosen to hide or disguise their tattoos in an effort to thwart detection by correctional and law enforcement agencies.
See also: Aryan Brotherhood; AB members & associates; AB Trial 2006; Dallas Scott; Thomas Silverstein; Aryan Nations
From The Houston Chronicle:
The Aryan Brotherhood of Texas prison gang is the “most violent extremist group in the United States, contends the Anti-Defamation League, which has studied and tracked the group for years.
The ADL published its findings Wednesday in a blog posting. It says in part:
“What’s the most violent extremist group in the United States today? The answer may be surprising: it is the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas (ABT), one of the largest white supremacist prison gangs in the country. According to ADL records, since 2000, this racist group—which has no relationship to the older, “original” Aryan Brotherhood—has killed more Americans than any other domestic extremist group.
Since 2000, ABT members and associates have committed at least 29 murders in the United States, all in Texas or neighboring states. The true number is likely considerably higher, as most murders that occur behind prison walls do not get reported by the media. The 29 known killings are all “street” killings, more evidence of the growing presence of racist prison gangs on the streets of America.”
The Aryan Brotherhood of Texas is a prison-born gang that formed in the 1980s, and based in part on the Aryan Brotherhood.
A piece published earlier this week in the Houston Chronicle looked at an ongoing law-enforcement probe that has put more than 60 of the gangs members in state or federal prison and continues.
The allegations described in numerous court documents and records, which were used to prosecute the gang’s members, including ranking generals, describe an organization where betrayal can bring an order they be killed. The most recent killings do overwhelmingly seem to be kept to the gang’s inner circle and not draw in civilians.