by Ali Alameh.
Known as one of the most brutal and violent outlaw motorcycle clubs, the Mongols Motorcycle Club has built up quite a reputation over the years.
What started out as a mainstream motorcycle club, ended up turning into one of the biggest titans the outlaw motorcycle community has witnessed over the past fifty years. From human trafficking to drug deals and countless gang wars, the Mongols Motorcycle Club has solidified its position as a force to be reckoned with.
The Mongols are notorious for good reason, but here are 15 facts you may not have known about this motorcycle club.
15 They Were Formed Fifty Years Ago
Formed as a Hispanic rival to the infamous Hell Angels Motorcycle Club, the Mongols Motorcycle club was created in Montebello, California, in 1969 where they have grown to become one of the most notorious outlaw motorcycle clubs out there.
Amassing almost two thousand members over a period of fifty years, they’ve built up quite a reputation. Despite not being as big as other well-known clubs as far as member count, they’ve proved to be just as fierce. What they lack in numbers, they make up for in brutality and tenacity.
14 They Were Banned From Wearing Their Patches At One Point
If there’s anything members of outlaw motorcycle clubs take pride in, it’s their patches. Not only do patches show loyalty and commitment to the club a member is part of, but they also show their achievements and ranking within that club.
That’s why they’re not very fond of people trying to stop them from wearing their patches. And that’s exactly what happened back in 2008 when prosecutors were granted pretrial authority to seize Mongols members’ jackets or any other item that had their logo on it. The decision was later overturned by a California judge as it violated both the First and Eighth Amendment.
13 They’ve Encountered Countless Problems With The Law
It’s no surprise that your usual motorcycle club would run into issues with the law, but it’s usually for trivial things such as speeding or some sort of bar fight.
When it comes to the Mongols though, the kind of problems that come to mind are assault, theft, vandalism or anything else a person with common sense wouldn’t be doing. At one point, the Mongols had as many as 270 warrants issued against them at once.
12 The Club Was Infiltrated Twice By Law Enforcement
Back in 1998, agent William Queen from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) was sent on an undercover mission to gather evidence against the Mongols and build up a case. Queen ended up becoming a fully patched member and chapter vice president. Over a period of 28 months, evidence gathered by Queen led to the arrest of 54 Mongols, 53 of which were convicted.
The club was infiltrated again in 2008 by four ATF agents in an operation called Black Rain. The operation led to the arrest of 38 Mongols, including the Mongols’ National President at the time, Ruben “Doc” Cavazos who was later voted out the club.
11 They’ve Made Millions Of Dollars In Illegal Activities
From stealing dozens, if not hundreds of motorcycles, to human trafficking and expensive drug deals, the Mongols have raked up some serious cash over the years. In recent years though, the club supposedly has refrained from engaging in any more criminal activities following the election of David Santillan as club president in 2015.
10 They Went To War With The Mexican Mafia
In 2004, a group of Mongols got into a confrontation with members of Lasondra, a gang loyal to the Mexican Mafia, regarding a drug operation the gang was running in a motel that the Mongols were staying in. The confrontation led to the bust of the operation by police, which upset the Mafia. The Mongols were ordered to pay a sum of $10,000 to compensate for the losses the Mafia suffered.
The Mongols refused to pay, which led to a street war going off, resulting in multiple deaths from both sides. The two parties ended up meeting behind closed doors and resolved the ongoing war between the two. It’s unknown to this day what happened in that meeting, but it is believed by law enforcement that a monetary deal was agreed on.
9 They Have Their Own Intelligence Unit
In an interview with Gangland, former Mongols National President, Ruben “Doc” Cavazos told the reporter: “I’ll dress differently. And when the Mongols are headed to a bike function, I would enter it ahead of time, and I will mingle, and find out who’s there.” Explaining how he covertly gathers intel on other groups and clubs, he added: “So it’s very much like the military.” The Mongols don’t mess around.
8 The German Mongols Motorcycle Club President Died In A Bike Accident
As a matter of fact, most of the members of the German club that was formed back in 2010 didn’t know how to ride a bike. If anything, they used their cars to get around places and didn’t even own licenses to drive motorcycles. When Mustafa B., president of the German Mongols Motorcycle Club, finally got his license, he ended up getting into an accident and passed away shortly after the club’s formation.
7 They Have Chapters In Multiple Different Countries
What started out as a simple motorcycle club in California grew to be something much bigger. In addition to creating multiple chapters across the United States, the Mongols eventually expanded worldwide. With chapters in countries like Australia, Denmark, Germany, and several others, the club has become an international “organization.”
6 Patriotism Is A Virtue Shared Among A Lot Of The Club Members
In an interview with Orange Country Register, several Mongols talk about serving their country, what they went through during that period, and how they found refuge in the Mongols club. Mongols member and ex-marine Barefoot explains: “These boys helped me with a lot of stuff. When I was down on my luck, they helped with rent. They’re real solid people. They’re there for you 100 percent.”
5 They Value Their Brotherhood More Than Anything
Members of the club view and treat each other as family, and some even set aside their “real” families in favor of the club.
Mongols San Diego chapter president Mike Munz tells Gangland: “I’ve been shot for this club, I’ve been stabbed while I’ve been in this club, I’ve been to prison for this club. You know, a lot of people, they don’t understand, but you know what I have? I have people that love me and care about me, that aren’t going anywhere. The club is always there for me.”
4 They Have Their Own Coded Language
We’re not talking about the kind of code we used to use back in high school to make sure our plans for ditching last period didn’t get foiled. We’re talking about military-like codes that club members used when other means of communication weren’t available or when the content of the message was required to be kept secret.
In one instance, following a murder committed by one of the Mongols, the club declared a Code 55, which meant hiding all gang affiliation. Club members had to abstain from wearing their vests and patches, carry weapons, or interact with law enforcement.
3 They Almost Died Out
When the Mongols reached an all-time low of 100 members, things started to get a bit rough. During that time, the club got infiltrated for the first time and several people got arrested, putting the club in an even more awkward spot.
The infiltration was broadcasted on television, a move law enforcement thought would be fatal to the club. Unknown to the former is that the exposure the club gained from the story would double the club’s member count, and it has continued growing to this day.
2 They Were Formed As A Hispanic Alternative To The Hells Angels
What if the Hells Angels said yes to a couple of people who wanted to join their club? The Mongols would have never existed.
Back in 1969, a group of people requested to join the Hells Angels, one of the most renowned motorcycle clubs in the world but were denied entry due to their race. Following that incident, the Mongols Motorcycle Club was created, becoming Hells Angels’ biggest rival. The two eventually went to full-on war, going as far as bombing each other before the animosity finally simmered down following the end of the Mongols’ war with the Mexican Mafia.
1 They Have Their Own Website
Believe it or not, they actually have their own website. With content ranging from news regarding the club to photos and videos of the activities they do. They even have a section called “Brothers Behind Bars” dedicated to freeing their “wrongly accused” brothers out of prison.