Chilling images show life inside America's most savage prison gangs and those brave inmates who defied their power

These striking images give an intimate portrait of life inside America’s most dangerous prison gangs – and those who dared to turn their back on them.

The California Department of Corrections (CDC) houses approximately 162,000 inmates, the most dangerous of whom serve their time in Level IV maximum-security facilities.

Within these walls, gang affiliation supersedes all else, including family, friends and human contact.

Every gang has a hierarchy, and those who are gang affiliated follow orders from the leaders who are deemed gang ‘validated’ – a status attributed to only the most brutal and most feared inmates.

Leaders of gang

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