VALLEJO — The FBI is investigating potential “criminal enterprise activities” of the Vallejo chapter of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club, including an hours-long beating at the infamous outlaw biker gang’s clubhouse and the possession of guns, silencers, and more than 1,000 rounds of ammo seized in a series of December raids, court records show.
In a criminal complaint filed in the Eastern District of California, federal authorities revealed they’ve sought arrest warrants for three Hells Angels members and one “enforcer,” as part of an ongoing investigation into the Vallejo charter of the Hells Angels. The FBI appears to be weighing the possibility of seeking an indictment under the RICO Act; Task Force Officer Shane Raftery described the charter as a “criminal enterprise” that lords over other motorcycle clubs and is involved in a territory dispute with rival clubs in Yolo County.
“To perpetuate the enterprise and to maintain and extend its power, Vallejo Hells Angels Motorcycle Club members and associates engage in a pattern of racketeering predicates, including committing and conspiring to commit murder, attempted murder, intimidation, and assault resulting in great bodily injury against individuals who pose a threat to the enterprise or who jeopardize its operations,” Raftery wrote in the criminal complaint.
Federal prosecutors have filed gun possession charges against one alleged Hells Angels member, Jaime Alvarez. The criminal complaint seeks arrest warrants against two others — Kenneth Caspers Jr. and Dennis Killough Jr. — as well as Michael Mahoney, who is described as an “enforcer” for the group, but not a member. The complaint contains an undated picture of Mahoney wearing a Hells Angels vest that says “hangaround,” a status the club assigns to those who seek to become prospects and eventually full-fledged members.
News of the investigation came as three Hells Angels members are standing trial in a racketeering and murder case centering on the Hells Angels of Sonoma County. That case stems from a series of arrests in 2017, involves more than a dozen defendants and allegations that members of charters in Fresno, Sonoma, Boston, and elsewhere conspired to murder a Hells Angels sergeant-at-arms and dispose of his body through an illegal cremation.
On Monday, a former Hells Angels prospect named Steve Kerhagen testified he infiltrated the group as an FBI informant, becoming one of three former prospects or members around the Bay Area to cooperate with authorities.
The complaint describes an October 2021 hours-long assault at the Vallejo clubhouse, where roughly a dozen Hells Angels allegedly pulverized two members of the Union Iron Workers Motorcycle Club, beating one for one hour and 50 minutes — that victim said he used a clock on the wall to time the beating — and a second into a “semi-conscious state.”
In that incident, the first victim was set to meet a Hells Angels member at the clubhouse with others in his motorcycle club but decided to go early, by himself. When he did, he was attacked so extensively he suffered multiple broken ribs, and was told the beating would stop if he gave up the name of a second Union Iron Workers clubhouse member he’d been filmed talking to about motorcycle clubs that rival the Hells Angels, according to the complaint.
The man — named in court records only as “Victim 1” — promptly gave up the name of “Victim 2,” who was then lured to the club and assaulted in a similar fashion. Victim 1 was threatened by the unnamed president of the clubhouse that he’d be killed if he returned to Vallejo, but he eventually cooperated with police, the complaint says. Victim 2 claimed to have at best a patchy memory of the incident.
Caspers, Killough, Mahoney, and Alvarez are all named as alleged participants in the assaults, and Mahoney was linked to a 2021 incident in which he allegedly knocked out a man during a fight at Judy’s Wild Wrangler Saloon in Vacaville, according to the complaint. It is unclear what month in 2021 the bar fight took place.
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