The Eighth Circuit gave the Hell’s Angels Motorcycle Club, Minnesota chapter, a reprieve today. The federal government brought the case under the Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act of 2000 with the goal of seizing the Angels’ clubhouse. The government alleged that the Angels used the clubhouse to sell methamphetamine. According to the allegations, Club members used meth as a medium exchange, even paying remodelers for their work on the clubhouse with the drug. The district court granted summary judgment to the government, but the Eighth Circuit reversed. The court held that the Angels’ opposing affidavits sufficiently undermined the credibility of the government’s affiants, requiring a trial to determine where the truth lies. United States v. Real Property Located at 3234 Washington Avenue North, Minneapolis, Minnesota, No. 06-1983 (8th Cir. Mar. 22, 2007).
All of which reminds Blawgletter of something a Hell’s Angels leader once said to a reporter, who asked how the group recruited members. He said " we don’t recruit ’em. We recognize ’em."