Mongols (motorcycle club)

Mongols (motorcycle club)
Mongols MC
Mongols MC Patch.jpg
Mongols vest with patch
Founded 1969
In Montebello, California
Years active 1969-present
Territory Mostly Southern California. Also Nevada, Oregon, Colorado, Washington and Ohio[1]
Ethnicity Majority Hispanic[1]
Membership 1,000–1,500[1]
Criminal activities Drug trafficking, weapons trafficking, grand theft, racketeering, loan-sharking, money laundering, extortion, and murder for hire[1][2]
Rivals Hells Angels,[1] Gypsy Joker MC[3]

The Mongols Motorcycle Club, sometimes called the Mongol Nation or Mongol Brotherhood, is a "one-percenter" motorcycle gang and organized crime syndicate. The club is headquartered in southern California and was originally formed in Montebello, California in 1969 by Hispanic Vietnam War veterans who were refused entry to the Hells Angels because of their race.[4] Law enforcement officials estimate there are approximately 500 to 600 full patched members.[1] The Mongols' main presence is in southern California, with charters in 14 states, as well as international charters in Sweden, Germany, Italy, Spain, Australia, and Mexico.[5]


Criminal activities

The Mongols members have had long-running confrontations with law enforcement in such areas as drug dealing (especially methamphetamine), money laundering, robbery, extortion, firearms violations, murder and assault, among other crimes.[1][6][7][8][9]


In 1998, ATF agent William Queen infiltrated the club, eventually becoming a full-patch member and rising to the rank of treasurer using the undercover alias of Billy St. John. In April 2000, based on evidence gathered during Queen's 28-month undercover time with the club, 54 Mongols were arrested. All but one of the accused were later convicted of various crimes including drug trafficking, motorcycle theft, and conspiracy to commit murder.[10]

In 2002, members of the Mongols and the Hells Angels had a confrontation in Laughlin, Nevada at the Harrah's Laughlin Casino, that left three bikers dead.[11] Mongol Anthony 'Bronson' Barrera, 43, was stabbed to death; and two Hells Angels—Jeramie Bell, 27, and Robert Tumelty, 50—were shot to death. On February 23, 2007, Hells Angels members James Hannigan and Rodney Cox were sentenced to two years in prison for their respective roles in the incident. Cox and Hannigan were captured on videotape confronting Mongols inside the casino. A Hells Angels member can be clearly seen on the casino security videotape performing a front kick on a Mongol which in turn started the ensuing melee.

Mongols member Christopher Ablett turned himself in to authorities in Bartlesville, Oklahoma on October 4, 2008 after going on the run for murdering Hells Angels President Mark "Papa" Guardado in San Francisco, California earlier that year. The San Francisco Police Department had issued a $5 million arrest warrant for him.[12]

On December 20, 2008 in Las Vegas, Mongols members arrived at "A Special Memories Wedding Chapel" for a fellow member's wedding, to find a local Hells Angels charter were just finishing up their own ceremony. It is reported by KTNV Channel 13 news, that the Hells Angels attacked the Mongols members, sending three to a hospital, two of whom suffered from stab wounds. No arrests were made and local authorities report that they are looking for suspects said to be involved in the attack.[13]

Operation Black Rain

On October 21, 2008, 38 members including Ruben "Doc" Cavazos were taken into Federal custody after four Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents infiltrated the group for a second time, becoming full patch members. 110 arrest warrants and 160 search warrants were issued in California, Ohio, Colorado, Nevada, Washington, and Oregon.[14] On October 23, 2008, US District Court Judge Florence-Marie Cooper granted an injunction that prohibits club members, their family members and associates from wearing, licensing, selling or distributing the logo, which typically depicts the profile of a Mongolian warrior wearing sunglasses, because according to the police, they use the logo and names as an identity and as a form of intimidation to fulfill their goals. Prosecutors requested the injunction after authorities arrested dozens of Mongols under a racketeering indictment.[15]

A planned weekend meeting in Lancaster, California, expected to draw 800 Mongols and their families, was blocked after city officials shut down and fenced off the hotel they had booked for the event, which coincides with the "Celebrate Downtown Lancaster" festival. The mayor had previously threatened to shut down the hotel over unpaid taxes if the agreement to host the Mongols was not canceled. An attorney for the Mongols said he plans to sue the city and the mayor, potentially for civil rights violations, after previously threatening to sue the hotel for breach of contract should they comply with the mayor's demands.[16][17] Mayor R. Rex Parris said he wants to keep the Mongols out because they "are engaged in domestic terrorism...and they kill our children."[18]

After a long legal battle over the Mongol's MC patch, The Mongols won the rights to continued use and ownership of their patch.[19]

Mongols MC Germany

A German chapter of Mongols MC was founded in Bremen by members of the local crime syndicate run by Kurds from Lebanon immigrants in 2010. It was the first time that a Muslim clan-based crime syndicate in Germany became active in the field of outlaw motorcycle clubs.[20] Organized crime in Bremen is dominated by the Miri clan, a large family of Kurdish-Lebanese origin with an estimated 2,600 members, who first migrated to Germany beginning in the late 1980s, and rose to national notoriety with a number of large-scale criminal activities in 2010.[21]

According to Andreas Weber, the state of Bremen's chief of criminal investigation, the new Mongols chapter is only nominally a motorcycle group. Clan members do not have motorcycle licences and drive around the city in cars. Presumably, they are interested in associating themselves with the US motorcycle club primarily to profit from their infrastructure and trading channels in drug trafficking. The president of Mongols Bremen, "Mustafa B." accidentally killed himself with his bike as a novice licence holder briefly after the chapter's foundation. He was presumably succeeded by "Ibrahim M.", who is on record with 147 felonies ranging from grievous bodily harm to illegal possession of a weapon.[22]

Local daily newspaper Kölnische Rundschau reports that a further German Mongols chapter becomes active in Cologne, which is a traditional Hells Angels area.[23]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Glover, Scott (October 22, 2008), "U.S. targets bikers' identity; Prosecutor vows to strip Mongols of their name after 61 members are arrested as a result of a 3-year probe.", Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, Calif): A.1, 
  2. ^ Gangs in Idaho: Mongols MC
  3. ^
  4. ^ Organized Crime in California Annual Report the California Legislature 2004
  5. ^ "The Official Site of the Mongols Motorcycle Club". Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  6. ^ "Mongols motorcycle gang members arrested". USA Today. October 21, 2008. Retrieved May 13, 2010. 
  7. ^ "Mongols Motorcycle Gang Arrested In Federal Sweep". Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ "Feds seize biker gangs trademark". Andrew Orlowski, The Register,, accessed 25th October 2008.
  10. ^ Queen, William Under and Alone : The True Story of the Undercover Agent Who Infiltrated America's Most Violent Outlaw Motorcycle Gang, Random House, 2005 (ISBN 1400060842)
  11. ^ "Las Vegas Review Journal, 4/30/2002; LAUGHLIN SHOOTOUT: Signs told of melee in making". 2002-04-30. Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  12. ^ "'Polite' Surrender in Hells Angels Killing". 2008-10-08. Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  13. ^ KTNV ABC, Channel 13 News story on Event[dead link]
  14. ^ [1][dead link]
  15. ^ The Associated Press. "Judge bans Mongols from wearing trademark logo". Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  16. ^ Currier, Craig (July 17, 2009), "Mongols fenced out; Officials shut down inn to block gang", Antelope Valley Press, [dead link]
  17. ^ Currier, Craig (July 16, 2009), "Mongols vow lawsuit to hold rooms at inn", Antelope Valley Press, [dead link]
  18. ^ Simmons, Ann M. (July 17, 2009), "Lancaster mayor trying to keep Mongols motorcycle club out of town; Mayor R. Rex Parris has moved to shut down a local motel that had agreed to accommodate the bikers during an annual meeting this weekend.", Los Angeles Times,,0,5669427.story 
  19. ^ Rivera vs. Carter, et al., Case No.2:09-cv-2435-FMC-VBKx;
  20. ^ Hells Angels vs. Bremen Mongols: Biker War Feared in Germany ABC News 21 October 2010. Der Spiegel 18 October 2010
  21. ^ "''Bild'' 18 October 2010" (in (German)). Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  22. ^ Hells Angels vs. Bremen Mongols: Biker War Feared in Germany ABC News 21 October 2010.
  23. ^ [2] Kölnische Rundschau 25 June 2011.

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