Last year, the Mongols Outlaw Motorcycle Club, one of the country's most violent gangs, was looking for an East Coast partner to help them fight bikers in the midwest, according to a Mongols indictment last week.
The California-based Mongols approached the Pagans Outlaw Motorcycle Club, which had dominated the East Coast and recently helped drive the Hells Angels - the Mongols' archrivals - out of Philadelphia.
The deadly combination of Mongols and Pagans could spell trouble for the area.
The would-be partnership between two tough biker clubs was revealed in an 86-count racketeering indictment, released last week, which charged 79 Mongols and associates in several states with murder, hate crimes and drug trafficking.
The charges came after federal agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives infiltrated the Mongols for the second time in 10 years.
According to the indictment, Mongols president Ruben "Doc" Cavazos talked - in code - to confidant Lawrence "Lars" Wilson about creating an alliance with the Pagans during an Aug. 1, 2007 telephone call.
Cavazos, author of a recently published Mongols memoir, "Honor Few, Fear None," and Wilson wanted the Pagans to help them fight the "Sons of Silence" gang in Indiana, according to the indictment.
Six weeks later, leaders of the Mongols met the Pagans in a face-to-face encounter in Atlantic City.
The indictment identified the Mongols' national officers who attended as the president, Cavazos; his son, Ruben "Little Rubes" Cavazos, Jr.; and William Michael Munz, in addition to members Al "Al the Suit" Cavazos, Jr. and Wilson.
The indictment did not identify the Pagans at the Sept. 13, 2007 meeting.
The Mongols president talked to the Pagans about expanding his gang's authority on the East Coast. The Mongols already have chapters in New York, Maryland, Virginia and Florida, the indictment stated.
To make an alliance enticing, Cavazos indicated that the Mongols maintained a supply of weapons - handguns, shotguns, assault rifles and machine-guns - which were stolen, unregistered or non-traceable. They also were involved in methamphetamine distribution, the indictment stated.
The indictment does not indicate whether the guns and drug were offered to the Pagans, nor the Pagans' response.
The Pagans, who are friendly with the Sons of Silence, did not join the Mongols in warfare against them, said a source familiar with the Sons of Silence.
Four months after the Atlantic City meeting, the Mongols were calling the Pagans a "rival," according to the indictment.
In a Jan. 10 telephone call, Wilson ordered an unidentified Mongols member to beat members of the Pagans gang in Baltimore, Md., according to the indictment.
Locally, however, members of the Mongols and Pagans have been observed being "friendly" by law enforcement sources at the "Roar of the Shore," a biker weekend last fall in Wildwood, in Atlantic City casinos and in the Philadelphia area.
Last fall, members of the Pagans flew to California to party with the Mongols, who put them up in a high-priced hotel, said a law enforcement source.
"We believe there is an alliance," the source added.
Last weekend, law enforcement sources observed the Pagans Mother Club president David "Black Bart" Barbieto and vice president Floyd "Jesse" Moore in the area to meet with the Devils Disciples, a New England-based biker club expected to "patch over" to become Pagans.
Moore later partied with Pagans, a few Mongols and Disciples at a Halloween bash on Mechanicsville Road near Maureen Drive, in the Northeast, according to knowledgeable sources.
The Pagans, founded in 1959, grew to nearly 400 members with chapters from New York to South Carolina. In recent years, rival gangs opened chapters challenging the Pagans' East Coast dominance.
The Mongols, founded 10 years later in southern California, have nearly 600 members in 14 states, Canada, Italy and Mexico. *