RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – "They didn't have a chapter in Richmond and they wanted one." Those words from an ATF agent who pretended to be a member of the Outlaws motorcycle gang for more than two years. He's the government's star witness in the trial again four gang members.
This ATF agent has infiltrated four motorcycle gangs in the last 20 years. This time around, he said it was a living nightmare worrying if he was going to be exposed. The government gave him a new name, a made up identity. He shaved his head, had a long goatee. He even had a fake home. The government put him up in a house in Prince George on the edge of Hopewell.
The agent was investigating the Mongrels motorcycle gang when the Outlaws recruited him to expand their territory into Richmond. He became the president of an Outlaws clubhouse in Petersburg on Crater Road.
The agent testified that the Outlaws claim to be one percenters, meaning society's rules don't apply. He said they abide by their own laws and control their own destiny. He told jurors about patches given to members for extreme acts of violence on behalf of the club.
And he testified to several showdowns with rivals like the Hells Angels in and around the tri-cities and Richmond. Including an all-out fight in March of 2009, where knives and guns were drawn.
It happened in at the Cockade City Grill in downtown Petersburg. The agent says the Outlaws went looking for the local hangout of a rival group called the Desperados. He says they went inside to intimidate the group and claim control over Petersburg. The agent had a beer bottle smashed on his head. The fight spilled out into the parking lot. He told jurors it could have been a shootout had local police not shown up.
This agent testified for 8 hours Thursday and will be cross examined Friday. Defense attorneys have said they will try to show that the agents were the lawbreakers, instigating problems. This trial is expected to last two weeks. Another 6 other members of the Outlaws go on trial at the federal courthouse in December. 15 others have pleaded guilty and the charges against one member have been dropped.