Pagans Motorcycle Club is a one-percenter motorcycle gang formed
by Lou Dobkin (or Dobkins) in 1959 in Prince George's
Known simply The Pagans
colloquially, the club rapidly expanded and by 1965, the Pagans,
originally clad in blue denim jackets and riding Triumphs
, began to evolve along
the lines of the stereotypical one percenter motorcycle club.
are categorized as an outlaw motorcycle gang by the Federal Bureau
They are known to fight over territory with
the Hells Angels
(HAMC) and other
motorcycle clubs, such as Fates Assembly MC, who have since merged
with the HAMC. They are active in eleven states; Delaware,
Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio,
Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia.
The Pagans MC patch depicts the Norse
sitting on the sun, wielding a sword, plus the word
[sic] in red, white and blue. Unlike most one
percenter motorcycle clubs, the Pagans do not include on their club
insignia a bottom rocker indicating the geographical chapter of the
member wearing the club's full patch. It is believed the club
declines to follow this one percenter tradition because they do not
want law enforcement to know what state chapters individual Pagans
belong to. Members wear blue denim vests called cuts or
cutoffs with club patches, known as colors, on the front and back
and symbols of the Pagans also include a black number 13 on the
back of their colors (indicating that they are affiliated with the
club's Mother Chapter), the number "4" (which signifies the motto
"live and die"), the number "5" (which signifies the Nazi SS motto), the number "7" (an "in memory of" patch)
and the number "9" (the chapter with which the member is
or White supremacist
patches are also common on
the front of the cuts, as are tattoos reading "ARGO" (Ar Go Fuck
Yourself) and "NUNYA" (Nun'Ya Fuckin' Business).
Recently, the Pagans' membership has begun to decline as their
rival Hells Angels’ membership has grown. Pagans have approximately
350 to 400 members and 44 chapters and are active along the
East Coast of the United
. Chapters are common in Florida, New Jersey,
Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, and West Virginia. The Pagans
have a Mother Club or ruling council which ultimately rules the
Pagans headquarters is currently in Delaware
Members must be at least 21 years old and owners of Harley-Davidson
or Triumph motorcycles with
engines larger than 900 cc. The national sergeant-at-arms'
responsibility is to hand-pick 13 chapter members to serve as the
"enforcers" or "regulators". This body uses violence and
intimidation to prevent any and all opposition to the Mother
Members join for a variety of reasons. First, bikers often consider
themselves as loners and join gangs for mutual protection. The
bonds with other motorcyclists are strengthened by the subscription
to non-conventional norms and the rejection of mainstream society.
Secondly, they use MCs as mechanisms of power. Oftentimes, MC
membership brings them legitimate and illegitimate job
opportunities and financial prospects. Additionally, members feel a
sense of control while intimidating less powerful, defenseless
citizens. Generally, the values of this MC subculture lie in the
value of brotherhood, the interest in motorcycling, and respect for
mechanical skills. Although many motorcycle gang members are
loners, many have families, are gainfully employed, and have much
to lose despite their risk-taking.
The Pagans have been linked to the production and smuggling of
drugs such as methamphetamine
, and PCP
The Pagans also have had strong ties to organized crime
, especially in New Jersey
and Pennsylvania. Pagans often use puppet clubs, smaller affiliated
motorcycle clubs, or small street drug
organizations that support larger Outlaw Motorcycle
Gangs (OMGs) for distributing drugs. Pagans have also engaged in
assault, arson, extortion, motorcycle/car theft, and weapons
trafficking. Most of the violence carried out by the Pagans is
directed to rival OMGs such as Hells Angels.
February 23, 2002, 73 Pagans were arrested in Long Island, New
York after appearing at an indoor motorcycle and tattoo
expo called the Hellraiser Ball.
The Pagans had shown up to
the event to confront Hells Angels who were at the Ball. Dozens of
Pagans rushed the doors of the event and were met with violence by
the Hells Angels. Fighting ensued, ten people were wounded, and a
Hells Angel allegedly shot and killed a Pagan member. Two weeks
later, a Pagans owned tattoo parlor located in South Philadelphia,
In 2005, Pagans allegedly opened fire on and killed the
Vice-President of the Hells Angel's Philadelphia chapter as he was
driving his truck on the Schuylkill Expressway
. Later that
year, the Hells Angels closed their Philadelphia chapter.
MC leader, Jay Carl Wagner, 66, was arrested in Washington
County, Maryland, by 60 plus officers from state, local and federal
officials with a bomb disposal robot on May 9, 2007, and later
charged with possession of a regulated firearm after conviction of
a violent crime.
Police and agents recovered seven handguns,
two alleged explosive devices and 13 long rifles . On March 5th,
2008, Wagner plead guilty to being a felon in possession of a
firearm. On August 8, 2008, U.S. District Chief Judge Benson E.
Legg sentenced Wagner to 30 months in prison followed by three
years of supervised release.
In 2009, 55 Pagans members and associates were arrested from West
Virginia, Kentucky, Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey,
Delaware and Florida. Charges range from attempted murder and
kidnapping to drug dealing and conspiracy.So far, six defendants in
the case have pleaded guilty.
- Feds arrest members of Pagan Motorcycle Club in multistate
- Herald-Mail.com, May 10, 2007: Police search for
weapons during raid on area home