Mongols Thought Experiment

December 18, 2018

All Posts, News

Mongols Thought Experiment

The United States versus Mongol Nation case has quickly devolved into a kind of thought experiment for lawyers.

Over the last couple of weeks many distinguished trademark attorneys who have never gotten around to reading the indictment have weighed in on the subject and they have all missed the point. The importance of the case has never been about trademark law but, rather, the absurdity to which our government has stooped to create a phony problem (the motorcycle gang problem) and turn it into a make works project for public employees.

Nevertheless, some of the trademark lawyers’ comments are thought provoking and the best so far are in an article by Tom Kulik published today on the Above The Law newsite. Kulik is an intellectual property attorney and a partner in the Dallas law firm Scheef & Stone. The points he raises aren’t original except, possibly, to him and the general public. They have been raised by the previous Mongols attorneys George L. Steele and Bob Bernstein and by current lawyer Joe Yanny but they remain unheard except by people without some connection to the case.

Intellectual Property

Kulik is smart enough to notice that, “unlike tangible assets, intellectual property involves inchoate rights that are simply not conducive to” criminal forfeiture. (It may bear repeating that the Mongols marks are not trademarks but “collective membership marks.”)

One of his obvious points is that: “Taking the Trademark Will Not Take Out the Club. The underlying rationale proffered by the federal government here is that the forfeiture of this trademark will ultimately give the federal government the ability to dismantle the club by forcing removal of the logo from the club member’s jackets and other property and destroying their ‘identity.’” But, “what is to prevent them from rebranding?”

The rebranding doesn’t have to be major. In fact the long established Bandidos Motorcycle Club changed its logogram a few years ago to differentiate itself from Bandidos in Europe and Australia.

Secondly, Kulik argues, “If the federal government controls the trademark, it seems clear that they will not be licensing the trademark back to the Mongol Nation (or another motorcycle club or anyone else) anytime soon. Without use in commerce, the trademark will go abandoned and trademark rights will cease. Unlike real property or monies seized that can be sold or otherwise allocated to different uses, respectively, trademarks cannot be so easily converted in the present case because it requires the transfer of the goodwill behind the business as well. No matter the reasons proffered for the forfeiture, the net effect of the criminal forfeiture would be to seize a legal asset and destroy it in the process.”

Finally, “Taking the Trademark Creates an Enforcement Nightmare.”

Everybody doesn’t have to read Kulik’s article but if you are reading this now and you are a lawyer or a journalist you probably should. You can find it here.

Share

9 Responses to “Mongols Thought Experiment”

  1. JOHN COKOS Says:

    Maybe the Biker Culture and Lifestyle is just a scam to sell HD’S ?
    Just sayin, taking a parallax view on all this.

    Anonymous: “The center cannot hold “

  2. commonsense Says:

    go to you tube and punch in “mongols attorney Stephen stubs” to here his take on the mongols. One thing I noticed he calls them mongol nation not an MC. He does comment on the rico act which I have before. I know that this is a pro biker site but a lot of comments on you tube feel no support for them. Some do. With that being said I would like to tell a story from 1980. we are working at a welding shop in Ventura Ca. Monday thru Thursday. On Thursday we cashed our checks then drank a pony keg in front of our shop. We had 2 full patched HA’s working there. My friend had a Kawasaki Z 1000 . this full patched HA…not in colors just wearing welding gear rode the bike and stuck that thing up on a wheelie. Ventura was cool then . A cop pulls up and says was that you on the bike ? The HA looks at me like fuck this cop and says yeah that was me… And the cop said never thought I would see you riding a Japanese bike…and drove off

  3. Anonymous Says:

    @whatsup

    Monumental? I don’t think so. The Pagans are the 2005 Mongols. Handing out patches to anyone and everyone. What the Pagans need to do is look at Black Rain and realize that if they don’t tighten up, we will be reading about them next.

  4. freebird Says:

    Sometimes music tells the story from a whole new angle

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJOX5tCd1qs&index=26&list=RD7wRHBLwpASw

  5. Whatsup Says:

    They should patch over to the pagans that would be monumental

  6. jrino Says:

    If the government gets the Mongols patch I would love to see tee shirts worn by bikers with the Mongols logo on it just to frustrate/ torment LE! No disrespect to the club.

  7. Kenny1%er Says:

    Lol Like I posted. They will change their patch I believe six points is the wording. Rebrand it and grow teice the size cause of all the government exposure. That will make whom ever control’s these feds just alittle upset. We need to learn from this because its gonna be a blueprint …get it…Lol dumb feds still dont get it.Man makes the patch.

  8. Paladin Says:

    Welk and Co. are many things, but it would be a mistake to believe them stupid. Welk and his crew are well aware of all that Kulik writes about in the article Rebel has linked to. Unless Yanny and Co. are working pro bono, the cost of this fiasco to the Mongols MC will be (if it already isn’t) absolutely staggering and that’s the government’s real goal here. This is a textbook example of what Rebel refers to as “extra Judicial punishment”.

    Paladin

  9. Johnny Rotten Says:

    You sir are a hard working motherfucker
    and for that we are all all grateful and proud to count you as an ally

    much respect

    Johnny

Leave a Reply