Mongols Motorcycle Club Seeks to Remove 'Biased' Judge from Trademark Case

By Girardot, Frank C | Pasadena Star-News, February 17, 2014 | Go to article overview

Mongols Motorcycle Club Seeks to Remove 'Biased' Judge from Trademark Case


Girardot, Frank C, Pasadena Star-News


LOS ANGELES » Attorneys for the Mongols Motorcycle Club want to disqualify the judge presiding over a case that will determine the future of the club's trademarked logo and patch.

The motion for the disqualification of federal Judge Otis Wright II asks that a random judge be assigned to the landmark case. Attorney Aaron Kupchella, who represents the Mongol Nation Motorcycle Club, LLC., filed the paperwork and several declarations Friday.

Trial is scheduled for March 25.

"...Comments, which have been memorialized in the public record, unquestionably display Judge Wright's bias against the sole defendant in this case, the Mongols Nation Motorcycle Club," the motion reads. "(That) bias was formed before properly receiving one shred of evidence in this case."

Justice Department spokesman Thom Mrozek declined to comment on the motion and its emphasis on Wright.

"Wright has a long history of disregarding the civil rights of (The Mongols) including the right to a full and fair trial and an impartial judiciary before finding criminal culpability and passing sentence," Kupchella alleges.

Five years after ATF agents busted 80 Mongols, including onetime club President Ruben "Doc" Cavazos, in a sweeping racketeering case, federal prosecutors remain focused on forcing the group to turn over their trademarked logo.

Each of the defendants in the case entered guilty pleas that remain under seal. Kupchella said those pleas could become an issue in the trademark case, and since Wright facilitated several of them, there is potential he could be a witness.

Prosecutors' were unsuccessful in their attempt to take the Mongols trademarks in the Cavazos case. …

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