Premature Adjudication

September 17, 2009

All Posts, News

So now, the year long minstrel show in the Roybal Federal Courthouse has degenerated into this: Acting United States Attorney George S. Cardona, after getting an extra two weeks to come up with something, anything, to save face, is now complaining that the judge in the Mongols case “prematurely adjudicated” all over the government’s beautiful criminal forfeiture dreams.

These prosecutors are starting to sound like a Foghorn Leghorn cartoon. “Pay attention, boy! I’m cuttin’ but you’re not bleedin’!”

No MCs Allowed

The whole point of this case, from the very beginning, has been to try to make motorcycle clubs illegal. Because the Mongols were definitely slipping while Ruben “Doc” Cavazos was running the club, and because the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) had previously patched an agent into that club, the government went after the Mongols first.

Six weeks ago, in a civil case titled Ramon Rivera versus Ronnie A. Carter et al., Federal District Judge Florence-Marie Cooper ruled that it is not illegal to belong to the Mongols Motorcycle Club; that in this country citizens have the right to join any motorcycle or political or religious or country club they want; and that the government should stop harassing and terrorizing citizens because they might own or once have owned some article of Mongols memorabilia. In other words, Judge Cooper is not going to make motorcycle clubs illegal.

Even today, the government still cannot get its mind around this heartbreaking disappointment.

The Zombie Prosecution

This past week the government coerced another three defendants into confessing that they were members of the “Mongols Gang,” and that the Mongols is a “criminal enterprise” involved in a pattern of “racketeering activity.” The three latest victims of this hysterical paroxysm are named Richard Espinosa, Jason Hull and Austin Klint Melcer. So far at least 33 defendants have confessed that the Mongols Motorcycle Club is a criminal racket. All of these confessions are reminiscent of justice as the word is defined in police states.

The government’s case has become a Zombie prosecution. It is already dead but it refuses to give up and fall down. It seems very unlikely that the Ninth Circuit Court or the Supreme Court is going to agree with the government on appeal. The United States Attorney who authored this heaping pile of Mongolian cluster law has already quit and run away to defend white collar criminals.

Cardona, the good sergeant, has been left behind to hold the firebase while awaiting further instructions. And apparently his radio is dead and he is running out of bullets.

The Issues

Apart from the criminal prosecutions of the remaining defendants who insist they are innocent, there are two, inseparable legal issues that remain formally unresolved. Simply stated they are: First, can the government just go ahead and seize the Mongols patch and anything decorated with either it or the word “Mongols;” and second, does the government have to give back what it has already seized from unindicted members and supporters of the club.

Judge Cooper has, for all practical purposes, already ruled against the government on both issues but before she decides that ruling into law she has given the prosecutors another chance to reinforce their arguments. Until this week, the government has been speechless. Prosecutors were so flummoxed by Judge Cooper’s ruling in Rivera and in another hearing on August 6th that they begged for and got a long delay.

The Government Argument

Here is what they finally came up with:

“On August 6, 2009, this court issued an Order (the ‘August 6 Order’) in which it denied the government’s unopposed application for entry of a preliminary order re registered trademarks and the government’s motion to strike a motion by non-party movant Mongols Nation Motorcycle, Club, Inc. (‘Movant’) by which Movant seeks to intervene in this criminal prosecution with respect to the forfeitability of property against which criminal forfeiture is sought. The August 6 Order incorporated by reference and adopted the legal analysis undertaken and conclusions reached by the Court in an order issued on July 31, 2009 in a separate civil case (Rivera v. Carter, CV 09-2435 FMC) (the ‘July 31 Order’), in which another non-party to this criminal prosecution sought to collaterally attack the Amended Order Restraining Trademark entered in this case by motion for a preliminary injunction limiting the scope of the Amended Order. The net result of these two collateral attacks by two non-parties to this case was the adjudication of the merits of the government’s criminal forfeiture claims in this prosecution, contrary to the explicit provisions of 18 U.S.C. § 1963(i) and Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 32.2, which govern federal criminal forfeiture proceedings.

“…the Court’s adjudication of the merits of the criminal forfeiture…was
improper and contrary to law.”

Not exactly Hemingway, is it?

Mongols Lawyers Unfairly Good

Throughout all of this past June and at least half of July gloating, bullying government agents were breaking into cars and invading homes in order to steal citizens’ private, personal property. “The government has voluntarily suspended…seizure of items bearing the restrained mark from non-defendants, meaning that no Mongols gang member need fear that the symbols of his membership in the criminal enterprise will be seized from him pursuant to the Amended Order,” the government now coos to the judge. And so, “the government should not be required to return any property seized.”

The Mongols seem to have changed, or at least supplemented, their legal representation in this matter in the late Spring. In Rivera, the plaintiff was represented by the San Diego office of the American Civil Liberties Union. This legal supplementation has obviously been very effective. Because, among several other complaints, the government resents the fact that the Mongols Motorcycle Club is now adequately lawyered up.

“The sudden emergence of this issue at the literal tail-end of the extensive briefing in Rivera, and the absence of any briefing whatsoever on the issue in this case, presents substantial issues of fairness and substantive analysis,” the government complains. “Plaintiff in Rivera failed to mention the supposed significance of the in personam nature of criminal forfeiture in either his original moving papers or his original reply.”

The government lawyers, the government contends, are the real victims here. Not the guy in the wheel chair who had his Mongols bandanna confiscated by a SWAT Team.

The government’s brief was filed Monday. The Mongols’ attorneys have until next Monday to file a reply. Then Judge Cooper will decide who has won and who has lost this case.

But as even the prosecutors openly concede, Judge Cooper has already adjudicated “the merits of the criminal forfeiture.” Whether that adjudication was “premature” or not should not matter. Even the government knows it has already lost this case.

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25 Responses to “Premature Adjudication”

  1. FTF Says:

    Sleddog,

    Couldn’t have said it better myself!

    LMDM

  2. sleddog Says:

    FTF: I 2ND THAT IN WHICH WAS MENTIONED ABOUT THE NURSE, FROM THE LAUGHLIN TAPES ON DOWN TO EVERY THING ELSE, AS FOR THIS CASE IT IS A BUNCH OF FUCKEN NONSENSE BUT WE DEAL WITH IT LIKE WE HAVE IN THE PAST MOVE ON IT’S A SHAME TO KNOW THERE ARENT REALLY THAT MANY GOOD DUDES LIKE THERE USE TO BE, WERE TRUST AND YOUR WORD WENT ALONG WAY’S, NOW NONE OF THAT MEANS ANYTHING NOW A’DAYS ONLY EXCEPT A FEW WHO STILL LIVE BY THAT WAY HOW EVER IT’S NOT IN JUST ONE CLUB THIER’S PIECE OF SHITS IN EVERY CLUB AROUND THE WORLD TILL THIS VERY DAY IT’S A FUCKED UP DEAL BUT THAT IS A FACT. ONCE THEY GET IN THEY PLAY THE OUTLAW ROLL WHEN THEY DO SOMETHING STUPID AND GET CAUGHT UP AND NOW THEY ARE LOOKING AT SOME TIME THEY BITCH UP. WHAT HAPPEND TO THE OUTLAW? IT’S A FUCKED UP DEAL WHEN A GOOD BROTHER HAS TO GO DOWN FOR NOTHING AND ALL BECAUSE OF SOME PRETENDER CANT DEAL WITH HIS OWN MATTERS IN WHICH ONLY ENVOLVES HIMSELF AND NOT ANYONE ELSE AND THESE SO CALLED LAW ENFORCEMENT PEOPLE COME ALONG WITH THIER PRETENDERS AND TWIST SHIT UP TO THE FULLEST TO BOOST THERE FUCKEN RESUME AINT THAT SOME SHIT… I THOUGHT THE BILLY QUEER DAYS WAS SOMETHING THIS TAKES THE FUCKEN CAKE. NOW AS FOR THE TAKING DEALS WELL I’M DISAPOINTED ON THAT NOTE,BUT WHAT CAN YOU DO OTHER THAN RIDE IT OUT….DO KNOW THAT THE MORE THAT TAKE A DEAL DO INFACT MAKE IT WHOLE LOT HARDER FOR THE ONE’S WHO WANT TO TAKE IT TO THE BOX EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE INNOCENT IT DOES’NT MATTER TO THOSE WHO ARE TRYING TO PUT YOU AWAY THEY DONT CARE ABOUT YOU YOUR FAMILY OR WHAT HAVE YOU IT’S ALL ABOUT THERE RESUME’S UNDERSTAND THAT…..AND AS FOR THOSE SPINELESS PIECES OF SHIT NOT JUST IN OUR CLUB BUT EVERY WERE ELSE YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE, SHAME ON YOU EVERY THING WILL COME OUT IN THE WASH SOONER OR LATER AND YOU WILL ALWAY’S BE KNOWN AS A PIECE OF SHIT FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIVES AND THAT IS A SHAME NOT JUST TO YOURSELF BUT TO EVERY ONE IN YOUR LIFE FOR AS LONG AS YOU LIVE AND THAT IS A SHAME…AND FOR THOSE WHO REMANE TRUE MY LOVE AND RESPECTS TO YOU AND YOURS…. ONE WHO IS NOT TAKING A DEAL…SLEDDOG MFFM

  3. izapmtb Says:

    2 ftf ok ur there then u no, i thought and i guess im wrong when you take a deal it 4 a lessor charge ???? and when you rat it because there going 2 point u out during ur trial?

  4. FTF Says:

    izapmtb

    I can say what I want because I am sitting there with them. I know what I would do because I am doing it, and it’s not taking a deal.

    there you go!

  5. izapmtb Says:

    like i said just because you take a deal that dosent mean your rat or now your a bad brother … its because there no solid evidence so you take a lessor charge hey were not siting in there with them so who no what you would do when you see them sitting in the witness stand than call the a bad brother

  6. FTF Says:

    Cavazos was, is, and will always be a punk lame. Everyone knew it back then too. I was locked up with a couple veteranos from the Ave’s and they told me they used to clown his ass and call him “disco bunny” and shit, back in the day. To wonder if he was actually “not” going to lie on anyone he could to save his own ass is a mute point. I wouldn’t be surprised if everyone he’s ever been in contact with throughout his pathetic life get indicted down the line. This piece of shit RAN away in Laughlin, then had the nerve to show the tapes in front of everyone and try and convince us that he didn’t run. He may have convinced himself, but many began to see him for what he really was after that day. A piece of shit!

  7. JAMES Says:

    HOLY SMOLY, SOUNDS LIKE THIER GOING TO HAVE TO BUILD A WHOLE NEW JAIL, THANKS FOR THE IMFO REBEL, WHEN I MADE MY STATEMENT EARLIER I WAS GOING ON A “MAYBE” PRESUMPTION THAT MAYBE CAVAZOS SPILLED ON THEM, WHICH HE IS A KNOWN LIAR SO WHO IS TO SAY HE DIDN’T SAY SOMETHING TO START THIS EVEN IF HE WAS NEVER A MEMBER OF THOSE FELLAS, AS HE CLAIMED TO HAVE BEEN, THANKS AGAIN FOR YOUR REPORTING OF THINGS AND DOING ALL YOU CAN TO SET RECORDS STRAIGHT.

  8. Rebel Says:

    Dear Selfish One and James,

    FYI

    FROM: Thom Mrozek

    Public Affairs Officer

    United States Attorney’s Office

    Central District of California (Los Angeles)

    Issued on Tuesday, September 22 at 11:15 a.m. PDT

    This case is the subject of this morning’s press conference at the LAPD Academy.
    The 222-page indictment will be distributed at the event.
    The indictment is also available via email.
    This afternoon I will have a spreadsheet with specifics on each of the 88 defendants.
    I may have updated arrest figures this, but the numbers below are accurate as of this time.

    FEDERAL RACKETEERING INDICTMENT CHARGES 88 MEMBERS

    OF NOTORIOUS NORTHEAST LOS ANGELES STREET GANG

    FIVE MEMBERS OF AVENUES STREET GANG CHARGED

    IN MURDER OF LOS ANGELES COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPUTY

    RICO Case alleges Mexican Mafia-led Attempts to Reorganize Avenues after

    2008 Federal Indictment Dismantled Gang’s Lucrative Drew Street Clique

    Eighty-eight members and associates of the Avenues street gang in northeast Los Angeles have been named in a wide-ranging federal racketeering indictment unsealed this morning that alleges a host of crimes, including the August 2008 murder of Los Angeles Sheriff’s Deputy Juan Escalante.

    This morning, during a massive operation involving approximately 1,300 federal, state and local law enforcement agents, 45 defendants were arrested on criminal charges in the racketeering indictment. Thirty-three of the defendants named in the indictment were already in custody. Authorities continue to search for 10 of the defendants named in the indictment. Additionally, five people were arrested on state criminal charges and parole violations. Therefore, a total of 83 people are now in custody as a result of the year-long investigation into the Avenues.

    According to the 222-page indictment returned by a federal grand jury last Thursday and unsealed this morning, members and associates of the Avenues are part of a criminal enterprise that engaged in a host of criminal acts, including murders, attempted murders, narcotics trafficking, robberies, extortions, money laundering and witness intimidation. At the center of the racketeering case are allegations that the Mexican Mafia sought to reorganize the Avenues and regain power the street gang lost after a federal indictment last year targeted the Drew Street clique of the gang (see: http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/cac/pressroom/pr2008/088.html). The indictment discusses numerous conversations and meetings between incarcerated Mexican Mafia leaders and emissaries of the Avenues where gang business is discussed. Members of the Mexican Mafia and the Avenues also plotted to smuggle drugs and cell phones into California prisons and jails, according to the indictment.

    “No matter how many times gangs like the Mexican Mafia and the Avenues seek to reassert control through intimidation, we will do what it takes to combat that intimidation, and ensure that residents need not live their lives in fear,” said Acting United States Attorney George S. Cardona.

    Los Angeles Police Chief William J. Bratton stated: “This morning’s operation demonstrated not only a continuing commitment to this area, but an ability to foster and maintain long-term relationships with diverse communities and law enforcement agencies. The satisfaction comes when these neighborhoods spring back to life.”

    Today’s operation caps an investigation conducted by the Los Angeles HIDTA (High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area) Task Force and the Los Angeles Police Department. The investigation began last summer and greatly expanded following the August 2, 2008 murder of Deputy Escalante. The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office previously charged four Avenues members with that murder.

    In addition to the murders and other violent acts, the indictment alleges that the gang “is continually engaged in” the distribution of narcotics, such as crack cocaine, methamphetamine and heroin. Avenues leaders control drug distribution by providing “street-level” amounts – typically a few grams of crack cocaine – to numerous gang members and associates and then collecting extortion payments – commonly called “taxes” or “rent” – from the sellers of the drugs, according to the indictment

    “For too long, these drug dealers have poisoned our streets and put fear into innocent people across our communities,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Timothy Landrum. “Today’s arrests dismantle this drug mob and should significantly impact drug-related crime in the communities where these organizations operated.”

    The indictment charges 20 of the defendants with conspiracy to launder money, specifically a portion of the “taxes” collected by the Avenues gang leaders that was paid to imprisoned Mexican Mafia members by depositing funds into their prison bank accounts.

    “In addition to the seizure and forfeiture of their ill-gotten gains, those members of the Avenues gang that dealt with the collection, delivery or deposit of extortionate tax payments, or used those illegal proceeds in furtherance of the Avenues gang’s narcotics trafficking, have been charged with money laundering – a charge that carries up to 20 years in prison,” said Leslie P. DeMarco, Special Agent in Charge of IRS- Criminal Investigation’s Los Angeles Field Office.

    During the course of the investigation, 33 firearms were seized, including nine guns that were seized this morning.

    “ATF will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to rid our neighborhoods of violent gang members,” said John D’Angelo, Acting Special Agent in Charge of ATF’s Los Angeles Field Division. “We are using our expertise to trace and ballistically test each firearm to determine their possible connection to other crimes.”

    As a result of the charges contained in the racketeering indictment, each of the 88 defendants faces a sentence of up to life in prison, and each faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in federal prison, where there is no parole.

    Robert Schoch, special agent in charge for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Investigations in Los Angeles, stated: “Today’s joint operation has dealt a serious blow to one of the most ruthless and dangerous street gangs operating here in the Los Angeles area. Law enforcement in Los Angeles is united in its resolve to attack and neutralize the gang threat. Today’s enforcement action is another dramatic indication of the headway we’re making to take back our streets. The days when gangs like this could hold entire neighborhoods hostage to fear are over. Now it is gang members who should be afraid.”

    The defendants arrested during this morning’s operation will be making their initial appearances in United States District Court beginning this afternoon and continuing into tomorrow.

    An indictment contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

    In conjunction with the arrests made today, the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office today is filing nuisance abatement lawsuits against the owners of three properties where the Avenues are known to operate. The lawsuits are being filed by the City Attorney’s Project T.O.U.G.H. (Taking Out Urban Gang Headquarters) section. The lawsuits will seek a preliminary injunction against the owner of each property and will request extensive physical and managerial improvements, as well as stay-away orders for known gang members, who are also named in the lawsuits.

    The criminal investigation into the Avenues is the product of a year-long investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department and the Los Angeles High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force, which is made up of agents and officers from federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. The HIDTA group that conducted the investigation is made up of agents and officers from the Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, IRS – Criminal Investigation, the Ontario Police Department, the Riverside Police Department, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department and the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.

    Assisting in today’s operation were the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF); the United States Marshals Service; the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Glendale Police Department; the California Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections; the Los Angeles County Probation Department; the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services; and the Los Angeles City Fire Department.

    Prior to the two racketeering indictments that targeted members of Drew Street and the Avenues gang as a whole, federal authorities prosecuted several members of the Avenues on civil rights charges for assaulting and murdering African-Americans (see: http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/cac/pressroom/pr2006/159.html and for information on a fugitive in this case see: http://www.fbi.gov/wanted/fugitives/cei/cambero_m.htm).

    CONTACT: Assistant United States Attorney Christopher Brunwin

    Violent and Organized Crime Section

    (213) 894-4242

    Assistant United States Attorney Ariel Neuman

    Violent and Organized Crime Section

    (213) 894-2917

  9. JAMES Says:

    THE SELFISH ONE, I TOO AM ONE OF YOURS IN OKLAHOMA, I KNEW THIS PIECE OF SHIT AND AM GLAD TO HEAR THAT THIS WAS JUST ANOTHER ONE OF HIS LIES, I HAVE BEEN HERE 28YRS. AND NEVER EVEN MET OR HEARD OF HIM UNTILL 2001, DID NOT LIKE HIM WHEN I MET HIM, BUT WASN’T AROUND HIM ENOUGH TO KNOW HIM TOO PERSONAL BUT WAS ABLE TO TELL WHAT HE WAS ABOUT, AND HE PROVED ME RIGHT, THANKS FOR SETTING IT STRAIGHT WITH THIS, M.F.F.M. FOREVER

  10. THE SELFISH ONE Says:

    ok real quick cause i dont want to spend anymore time on that piece of shit cavazos. HE WAS NOT AT ANY TIME EVER IN THE AVENUES, HE HUNG AROUND THE SAME AREA AS THE GANG DID BUT NEVER, EVER WAS HE CONCIDERD A MEMBER. IVE READ HIS BOOK AND FELT NOTHING BUT ANGER WITH EVERY LIE HE TOLD FROM THE WAY THAT HE SAY’S SOME OF THE GUY’S DIED TO HIS EVERYDAY DAY DEALING’S. JUST AS WE LAUGH AT THAT MORON NOW WE LAUGHED AT HIM THEN. JUST LIKE HE RAN AND HID IN LAUGHLIN HE RAN AND HID EVERY TIME SOMETHING WENT DOWN.I KNOW MY BROTHER LIL JOJO AND I WERE PART OF THE AVENUES BACK IN THOSE DAY’S. IM NOT SAYING THIS OUT OF ANGER. I FELL THAT ALL OF YOU SHOULD KNOW THE TRUTH ABOUT THIS GUY. THERE’S ALOT U GUY’S DONT KNOW THAT YOU READ AND BELIVE. THIS GUY IS A PIECE OF SHIT. I KNOW FIRST HAND AND IM NOT AFRAID TO PUT MY NAME OUT THERE AND LET U ALL KNOW WHO HE IS,WE GOT TOOK BY HIM. BUT MY CLUB THE MONGOLS ARE MOVING ON AND GETTING BETTER NOW LETS MOVE ON DONT WAIST ANYMORE TIME ON THAT MORON.

    THE SELFISH ONE
    BOYLE HEIGHTS CHAPTER
    MONGOLS MOTORCYCLE CLUB
    MFFM.

  11. JAMES Says:

    WELL NOW, I just read an article about different LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES going door to door arresting members of the “AVENUES STREET GANG” “WHERE DOC ” came from, sort of wonder if there may be any ties to all of this?

  12. JAMES Says:

    SORRY BUT I WAS MISTAKEN, “RICHARD ESPINOZA” HAD “2 DAYS”, NOT “12 DAYS” LEFT TO DO ON A PAROLE VIOLATIN WHEN HAULED INTO THE “CAVAZOS CASE”

  13. Insidelookingout Says:

    The Fed’s are not above blackmail, That is how they are getting most of the defendents!

  14. Rebel Says:

    Dear Sohn, Nookster and FTF,

    The government keeps making deals for Count One, the racketeering count of the indictment, because that is what they have been after all along.

    The defendants keep copping to those pleas because they are guaranteed 24 month sentences, basically. And, the government is also hiding most of the evidence.

    Some of the “predicate acts” are just ridiculous. Being an officer of the club, for example; taking a thousand bucks to provide security for an imaginary drug deal between two ATF Agents; or providing security at a party and so on. One guy was actually charged with telling an under cover that he was worried about the Hells Angels. What the government seems to really have on many guys is participation in multiple, small drug deals and the penalties for drug deals can be absolutely draconian.

    Reagan’s war on drugs is the worst thing to happen to America since the Civil War. One in ten American school children is “prescribed” some form of amphetamine for the imaginary “illness” of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Those prescription amphetamines are advertised on television and in magazines but it is a federal crime to use “a telephonic device to facilitate” a minor crank or cocaine deal. Kennedy shot up Benzedrine before he debated Nixon. On the subject of drugs, America is legally insane.

    But I digress.

    I am guessing that the choice that is presented to most of the confessed racketeers is do you want to go to trial and get twelve years or do you want to do two? The defense lawyers, obviously, are advising their clients to do the math. So far, in this entire case, I do not think anybody who has pled out is looking at more than about eight years. There have been, off the top of my head, as of this morning about 34 pleas so far and all but one of those has been a guilty plea to racketeering.

    There are more pleas coming and right now, I do not know when this case is going to trial. I am not positive there will ever be a trial. I am, frankly, surprised at some of the guys who are trying to negotiate deals. The trial is scheduled for November 24th and this has all become a big game of chicken. The government is prepared to run wild the charges on everybody who does not cop a plea.

    If the trial ever starts, the jury will be shown the Gangland episode, be shown and listen to numerous incriminating video and audio tapes, and listen to the very professional testimony of several ATF heroes. I will not be surprised if Billy Queen shows up on the witness list.

    The press coverage will be ill-informed and the jury will be unsympathetic. I probably will not be able to get into the courtroom to cover this thing because America’s Most Wanted, Esquire, Fox News, the el lay Times, Julian Sher and God knows who else will all want seats. All of those “news sources” already know everything they will ever know about motorcycle clubs. In fact, I will bet you now that one of these esteemed journalists will actually quote a character from an episode of Sons of Anarchy. In fact, I bet Kurt Sutter will be there, too and somebody will run a sixteen inch sidebar about Kurt right next to the trial coverage. The jury will be convinced that the Mongols is the Sicilian Mafia. All the sentences will be mandatorily enhanced because of RICO and Judge Cooper will be compelled by the sentencing table to lock guys up and throw away the key.

    And, there is more. Hanging over all the defendants’ heads is some degree of doubt about whether the club will still be there when they get out. I am sure that by saying that I just pissed off about half the Mongols, but I am also pretty sure that doubt is eating at some of the defendants. So guys are taking two instead of twelve or fifteen and they are taking eight instead of life.

    Right now, I am not comfortable with judging the ethics of copping to Count One. I was more certain a few months ago that copping to Count One was dishonorable. As far as I know, only six defendants in Cavazos et al. are “cooperating” beyond that. One defendant in Denver is cooperating with the case against the Mongols there. The case against the Set Free Soldiers in Orange County has remained unresolved for a questionably long time. The case against Christopher Ablett went federal a couple of months ago. Lars Wilson is chatting with federal investigators in Indiana. And, there are a couple of other loose strings I hesitate to pull on right now.

    All of these loose strings go back to Doc Cavazos. Doc is sitting up in Groom Lake or in Leavenworth, or Terminal island or Guantanamo and he could be saying practically nothing or he could be confessing that the Mongols caused the stock market crash. The guy could be on a water board or he could have his own tennis court. I really do not know. I know he pled out to Count One and Count Two. But the details of that deal are secret.

    Secret, secret, secret. Everything is secret because this isn’t really a criminal trial. This is an information war.

    I think the government would like to keep the transcripts of Doc’s “debriefings” secret forever. And, they will never have to disclose what Doc has told them if there is no trial.

    So, instead of a trial we get deals.

    Your pal,
    Rebel

  15. Not Surprised Says:

    I agree with Sohn and I agree with Nookster. RICO at trial has a very dismal record. It is designed never to stand trial but to force the target group to self destruct through self interest. One famous Mafioso even turned against his own blood relatives.

    I think I am correct in saying Sonny Barger was the first person to beat a RICO rap, twice even. The Judge on the case actually was so stressed, he had a heart attack during trial.

  16. FTF Says:

    Rebel,

    I agree in the most part with what you are saying. There is a lot going on, or that went on that not many know about, nor will know about really.

    It’s a huge shit sandwich without a doubt. The deal is that when you join a 1%er club you know what is up. Everyone involved knew what was up when they joined. A lot of them joined for the wrong reasons, but join they did all the same. So to hear things like “had to” sign for RICO to me is bullshit. If they were guilty why not fight out for a deal involving what they were guilty of? Why? Because they couldn’t hold their own mud. You know, I bet things were great when they were out playing “outlaw biker”. Well, when times got bad, all of a sudden things like being locked up matter? Why didn’t it matter when they joined the club? Why didn’t it matter to them when they were getting the club in a wreck?

    Sadly, things all come out in the wash, and nothing is ever going to be the same for anyone after this. As sad as it is to know what I know, and see who’s doing what, etc. I don’t think I’m sympathetic to their plight. Like you said, many can go home in 8 months to their own bed, and that’s something I guess they’ve decided is more important to them, now.

    Honestly, I think Sohn put it pretty well in his “ramling”….

  17. nookster Says:

    Uhhhhhh What?

  18. Sohn Says:

    Dear Rebel and Nookster,
    Unfortunately, it probably won’t be his cell mates cock[an answer to “Who knows what Doc Cavazos is going to pull out of his ass?”].
    When one joins an outlaw club everything you said, death and some othet tragedies included are some of the rewards that can befall one. It should be made clear to anyone comeing around and when it happpens no one can say “I had to do it”. People still will, but when they look at you with their puppy eyes you can still hold the high ground. My dad (not an outlaw biker) was locked up for over a year with no bail and then had a year long trial and has been in prison ever since and some of the scumbag lying rats called me and told me “they had to for their families” but my dad had a family too. When it comes down to it they had to because anything they were involved with was more important.
    The government entraps, frames and make up charges and the reason it works is that people “had to”. It happened in the Salem witch trial, it happened in the McArthy hearings, grotesquely inocent people making deals because they have to. But, with us we should expect it (not because of guilt) and we don’t “have to” and then in game theory we would prevail. And fuck the ones that “have to” because the brothers that are stand up are the ones that suffer and need simpathy.
    p.s. excuse my ramling, i’m on the phone and typing this at the same time.

  19. me Says:

    hey rebel alot of the shit the cops took from my house was not club stuff most of it personal belongings and my business i mean they just took what ever they wanted. so to see this stuff again i may as will kiss my shit goodbye and that really suck to have your home ramsacked and business so they can steal what they want…..

  20. nookster Says:

    I’m with you Rebel, the feds are cherry picking high profile case’s that should have remained in state. The feds feel these kind of cases are great for thier resume’s, will get thier mugs on TV and maybe even a book or movie deal. Not to mention the “expert witness” money after they retire. Besides, why would those agents want to chase around 50,000 bangers in East L.A. and try to confiscate red and blue doo- rags, doing what is probobly considerd shitty duty with no camera time, when they could be getting rid of the so-called “biker menace”. What a joke!

  21. Rebel Says:

    Dear FTF,

    I think the story behind some of the pleas is that the government has some sort of electronic surveillance that implicates a guy in a crime or there would be the testimony of one of the “biker expert” undercovers.

    Let me say this, though. Almost all of this shit should be state charges. Not federal. State charges. In most of these incidents, the feds should not even be involved.

    And, in some of the predicate charges, guys are pleading to crimes that are not even crimes: Like being a club officer and owning a gun.

    I was harsher about the pleadings than I should have been when I started covering this story. I am serious when I call these forced confessions. Some of these guys have already done a year. They are at the ends of their ropes. If they plead out they can be back in their own bed in seven or eight months. Maybe sooner.

    I get it. Who knows what Doc Cavazos is going to pull out of his ass?

    Rebel

  22. Rebel Says:

    Dear Nookster,

    Thank you very much. I could not have said it better.

    your pal,
    Rebel

  23. Nookster Says:

    This is the governments “modus operandi”. They slam everybody in jail on bullshit stacked up charges, give a no bail or a bail nobody could ever make and let them rot. Meanwhile, while incarcerated you lose your job, bills pile up, you got no money because the feds sieze your bank account, snatch your car and bike and anything else of value so you don’t even have anything to sell to hire a decent mouth piece. The old lady and the kids are home screaming with nothing to eat and about to be evicted. Pressure starts mounting because you got mofo’s like Doc and other’s lining up to snitch down the street and around the corner. You know you’re headed for trial, and you know the fed’s are going to box up 12 of the stupidest citizens know to man and after they get through playing that gangland episode 15 times the jurors will have guilty so stuck in their mind nothing else the pubic defenders do or say will change thier minds. At that time you either go to trial and face 20 to 30 years in the feds which you do all of except 54 days a year, or you cope a plea for a lot less time. There is no dishonor in coping a plea as long as the brothers agree together that its in thier best interest and they aren’t snitching on anyone. This is our government at work. They have it down to a science. Once you get slammed an ordinary man ain’t got a chance.

  24. FTF Says:

    There are quite a few indicted who were not part of the “Cavazos” crew. It seems as though most of them (Doc’s crew) took deals right out of the gate though. Sadly, many good Brothers are having to go through this mess, and some are going to probably do some time over this whole thing. The worst part is that I’m seeing names of many that are taking the deal who were considered good Brothers, and should have held out because they had a really good chance of beating this thing. At least that’s my take on it.

  25. JAMES Says:

    DAMNED SHAME, ESPINOSA who had done a short stint in prison(state) for being with another who got into an altercation and did bodily harm, ESPINSOA was just there.When released he was on NON-ASSOCIATION, got caught ASSOCIATING which was a parole violatin and was sent to a facility for a couple months, then when the DOC ordeal went down he was hauled out with 12 days left to do and sent to FED. HOLDING and indicted on the CAVAZOS THING.This happened to a bunch of these people and now look what is happenning, being coerced into sighning this stuff which he was not a part of,only thing he was , was to be a MONGOLS MEMBER waiting to go home from a parole violation, and not one of the CAVAZOS CREW.

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