It’s been an eventful month for the various outlaw motorcycle clubs around the world. But the Hells Angels topped the bill when it came to surprising incidents after its members were hit by indictments, bullets, and a ban.
Street Vibrations, a multi-city motorcycle festival in Nevada erupted in violent shootings after a Hells Angels leader was shot dead at John Ascuaga's Nugget hotel-casino in Sparks, Nevada. Jeffrey “Jethro” Pettigrew (51) headed the motorcycle gang's San Jose chapter and was enjoying a night out on the town gambling away some money in the hopes of winning some more when a shootout occurred between his group and members of the Vagos Motorcycle Gang. While Pettigrew (photo right) did not survive the shootout, two members of the Vagos were wounded.
Several hours after the shootout a retaliatory drive by shooting wounded another biker, prompting Mayor Geno Martini to declare a formal state of emergency.
At the funeral of Pettigrew a heavy police force was present to prevent any more violence from occurring. But it failed. As the Hells Angels buried their beloved brother and leader, Steve Tausan, a notorious sergeant-at-arms for the Santa Cruz chapter was allegedly shot dead by fellow Angel Steven Ruiz. (Photo on right shows Hells Angels founder and president Sonny Barger - middle - and Tausan - right) Other Hells Angels immediately jumped the assailant and he is suspected of having been kidnapped and killed after panic ensued following the shooting. Tausan was known as a top club enforcer nicknamed "Mr. 187'' after the state penal code number for murder.
If the murders weren’t enough, police arrested dozens of bikers in the US and The Netherlands. In San Diego, FBI agents arrested 26 individuals with ties to the Hells Angels Motorcycle gang on federal drug charges. Agents seized thousands of dollars in currency, in addition to firearms and several types of drugs, NBC San Diego reports. “The agents searched 19 different local locations for the suspects: four of which are considered fugitives”, according to an FBI statement.
In The Netherlands, the Amsterdam chapter of the Hells Angels saw its vice president Harrie Stoeltie under arrest on extortion charges. Stoeltie officially worked security for the famous high class Amsterdam brothel Yab Yum but police feared the Hells Angels had taken over the entire operation behind the scenes. This allegation has never been proven in a court of law though.
In Frankfurt, Germany, authorities have had it with the bikers and actually outlawed the outlaw bikers. “The German state of Hesse has banned two Frankfurt-based Hells Angels chapters and confiscated their assets”, the Independent Online reports. “Interior minister Boris Rhein cited a history of weapons offences and violence, saying: ‘These gangs are not in any way made up only of harmless motorbike riders. Many members are known to the police because of violent, drug or weapon-related offences.’ The interior ministry said it had the authority to ban clubs when their aims or activities broke the law.”
But it wasn’t all about the Hells Angels these past few months. On September 21, a Danish newspaper reported about a split within the Bandidos Motorcycle Club. Gangsters Inc. own Peter explained what had happened: “There is bad blood between Bandidos MC USA and the rest of the club in Europe, Asia and Australia. So Bandidos MC USA is now Western hemisphere and the rest is Eastern hemisphere. Same name but two clubs. Bandidos MC USA also has a new patch according to the article. If you check the link http://www.bandidostexas.com and read the guestbook, it seems there now are two clubs and in the USA they have a new patch.”
The world of outlaw bikers never gets dull. See you guys and gals next time!
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