Mongols Win Case Again

September 27, 2010

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The Mongols Motorcycle Club has won the Mongols Motorcycle Club case again. In a ruling issued September 21st and filed September 24th, Federal District Judge Otis D. Wright has ruled that the United States cannot seize the name and patch of the club.

Judge Wright ruled that his previously issued “preliminary order of forfeiture is rendered invalid.”

The issue of whether the Department of Justice and the ATF could simply steal the name and the patch of the Mongols Motorcycle Club was settled definitively in July 2009. But then Christopher Brunwin and Steven Welk, two of the prosecutors in this case, as well as the ATF Agents who had created the case, just simply refused to believe they had lost and the Mongols had won. The presiding judge then, the late Florence-Marie Cooper wrote an angry decision which stated unequivocally that the government could not seize the marks. Last week Judge Wright wrote, “United States District Court Judge Florence-Marie Cooper already ruled upon the issues relevant to this proceeding.”

In short, the prosecutors in this case have argued for two years that former Mongols president Ruben “Doc” Cavazos could forfeit the Mongols name and patch as part of his “punishment.” Two federal judges have now ruled the Mongols insignia is not Cavazos’ to give away.

Last week, Judge Wright wrote:

“Even if the Court were to accept the Government’s evidence that Ruben Cavazos controlled the use of the mark during his tenure as National President, there is no support for the notion that a defendant’s control of property belonging to a RICO enterprise is sufficient to establish a forfeitable ownership interest in the property. In addition, there is no evidence that Ruben Cavazos owned a majority interest or any interest in the Mongol Nation that would equate to an ownership interest in the mark. There is no evidence that Shotgun Productions, LLC ever used the mark as a collective membership mark – to indicate membership in an organization substantially similar to that of the Mongol Nation. The purported assignment to Shotgun Productions, LLC is therefore without legal effect. Moreover, the Government’s evidence demonstrates that the Mongol Nation began using the collective mark in approximately 1969, and either Mongol Nation or (MNMC) continues to use the mark to identify their members. (Guevara Decl. ¶ 6.) The Mongol Nation and (MNMC) by virtue of having used the collective membership mark since 1969, having registered the mark in 2005, and having continued use of the mark to identify members of the club, have acquired and maintained exclusive ownership in the collective membership mark at issue.”

Criminal Enterprise

The government has attempted to prove that the Mongols is a “criminal enterprise” by blackmailing Cavazos and more than 60 other members of the club into “confessing” that the government’s allegation is true. The weapon the government has used to force these confessions is the severe penalties provided by the RICO Act. Simply by accusing these defendants of “racketeering” the government was able to cynically manipulate the justice system. In some cases, defendants confessed only to being members or officers of the motorcycle club. The actual charges against most of the defendants were for violations of state law.

What Brunwin and the other prosecutors actually proved was that after being tortured with a RICO prosecution defendants become like prisoners of the North Vietnamese: They will confess to anything. And history may remember Brunwin for that.

In most cases the charges against defendants were either blatantly contrived or completely invented out of air. The case demonstrates the evolution of American policing. To this day, most citizens think “police work” is “solving crimes.” It is common for even cynical and bright people to still think that professional police “solve” murders, robberies and rapes. In the Mongols case, the investigators were evaluated on their ability to create crimes.

What Was Happening Here

What the government tried to do in the Mongols case was to outlaw this motorcycle club by seizing the name and the symbol club members wear on their backs – which bikers call colors. When lawyers cast their magic spells they use the Latin word indicia. Judge Carter prefers to call these expressions that Mongols wear on their backs insignia.

Effectively outlawing the Mongols by forbidding them the use of the symbols they use to identify themselves was the original point of this case. The prosecutors must have thought that seizing the indicia would be a heartbreakingly brilliant strategy to obviate Article One, Clause three of the Constitution, which is the part of the American idea that forbids guilt by association. The press release that accompanied the unsealing of the indictment gloated:

“The racketeering indictment seeks the forfeiture of the trademarked ‘Mongols’ name, which is part of the ‘patch’ members wear on their motorcycle jackets.

“‘In addition to pursuing the criminal charges set forth in the indictment, for the first time ever, we are seeking to forfeit the intellectual property of a gang,’ said United States Attorney Thomas P. O’Brien. ‘The name “Mongols,” which is part of the gang’s “patch” that members wear on their motorcycle jackets, was trademarked by the gang. The indictment alleges that this trademark is subject to forfeiture. We have filed papers seeking a court order that will prevent gang members from using or displaying the name “Mongols.” If the court grants our request for this order, then if any law enforcement officer sees a Mongol wearing his patch, he will be authorized to stop that gang member and literally take the jacket right off his back.’”

Successfully seizing the Mongols indicia would have also allowed the ATF to forbid patch holders and their suspected sympathizers Constitutional refuge from unreasonable searches and seizures and summary punishment without due process.

It would have worked like this: Once the indicia was forfeited ATF thugs could have carried out violent searches of homes and businesses looking for the forbidden symbol. The searches were common in the summer of 2009 and the point of them was not and would not be to gather or preserve “evidence” but to summarily punish “bad guys.” Private places are routinely damaged and wrecked in these searches as a method of punishment. Children are terrorized, parents are assaulted, robbed and bullied, pets are gunned down and sometimes the targets of these searches are murdered as a form of extra-judicial summary punishment.

Judge Wright’s ruling last week is another small step to slowing all that down, too.

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67 Responses to “Mongols Win Case Again”


    Congratulation to the Mongols mc Nation for their upcoming 41 year anniversary . And to the supports of “The Aging Rebel” who do more than talk

  2. I.J Says:

    Hey Rebel…. have you been told to shut up? This site appears to be dead!

  3. Rebel Says:

    Dear Theone.

    In a nutshell, Largo appears to be standing tall. And, I think his trial date is pushed well into next year. Off the top of my head, I think it is March. Also, off the top of my head, I think he will beat the charges against him.

    He is charged with being a Mongol; being a Mongols officer; talking to some Surenos some time; collecting club dues; and some shit Lars made up. Maybe there is more. But I think that about summarizes it. The case against him only works if the Feds can prove that he was the banker in the “Cavazos criminal conspiracy.” Unless Doc takes the stand, I don’t know how they are going to prove that. Even if Doc does take the stand, I don’t think the Feds can prove it.

    Lars will not take the stand. He was sentenced in camera because his sentencing position paper “contained information of a personal nature,” “contains nothing of any appreciable public interest to the general public,” and because there is a “likelihood of improper use of the material, including use for scandalous or libelous purpose.” Anyway, Lars has the covers pulled over his head.

    And, I think Gonzalez has a viable defense. If you look at the whole case, one guy who seemed to behave admirably, morally and honorably was Hector Gonzalez. I don’t know the guy but that is how he looks on paper. There is no good reason for the Feds to be pursuing a case against him. I think it is a blatantly malicious prosecution. It seems like a lost cause. Like the whole patch thing which the federales are still pursuing even though they lost that part of the case fifteen months ago and they have lost it twice more since then. Just fucking madness. $150 million, I think this Mongolian clusterfuck has cost the taxpayers so far. Madness. Madness. While people are losing their homes the Department of Justice of the United States of America fiddles with this.

    My opinion anyway.


  4. THEONE Says:

    Hey rebel any news on largos case?

  5. bystander Says:

    one day at a time is all we CAN do. i just keep myself busy with work, the kids, the house. i try not to think about it and time ticks away week by week. haven’t seen him in 17 months. that 2 hours went by way too fast. we email and he calls once a week. they can keep us apart, but they can’t break us! will continue to pray for your strength to carry on. one fine day, this will be behind us, my sister.

  6. proudmongolwife Says:

    bystander, ive been good thank you! just taking it one day at a time, thats all i can do! its just so hard cause now i cant see him at all after the fuckin shitty ass government send him away so far :(…. but “it is what it is” so how are you??

  7. bystander Says:

    very good news, indeed =) hey, proudmongolwife! how ya been sister?! hang in there girl, you’re always in my prayers. love the fight song video attached also…my honey’s in it!

  8. BigV Says:

    My apologies, I should have updated the page before posting.

  9. BigV Says:

    Apparently California’s Son of Sam law was struck down. Looks like Doc can live as an even fatter rat, and all from the misery he’s caused.

  10. Rebel Says:

    Dear Bob,

    The short answer is that her publisher is probably fucking with her. Nothing sinister. I don’t think she thinks of herself as a journalist. I think she regards herself as a writer and a poet. I don’t think her publisher is waiting for her to break a big, new story.


  11. Rebel Says:

    Dear The Creep,

    The Son of Sam law is a state law not a federal law. The California Son of Sam Law was overturned in 2002. I think Doc’s situation is comparable to Sammy the Bull Gravano’s, the Gambino underboss who published his memoir, Underboss, in 1999.

    your pal,

  12. BigV Says:

    Mr. The Creep: Sir, it’s the Son of Sam laws you’re thinking of. I’ll go look if that would apply.

    Take care,

  13. The Creep Says:


    If Doc Cavazos is found guilty of any charge, I thought there was a law on the books that prevented him from making a single penny off exploitation of his criminal ventures? Didn’t Dahmer or the Night Stalker or someone like that write a book about their exploits while in prison, thus causing said law? I could be completely mistaken, but I am curious about that.

  14. BigV Says:

    I heard Carrie either had advance knowledge of the Pagans bust in NY/NJ/PA or she’s adding in the case that just finished against the 55.

  15. JAMES Says:

    REBEL, for some reason I believe you are going to be right on the money with DOC writing another book, just too bad someone can’t put a lien against every penny of the sales of it, and you can bet it will be so blown out of proportion and full pure shit as he is.

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