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Not-so-tough guys: Bikers sue local police for targeting and harassment

The Mongols biker club's rally in Boulder City happened just last week.

Tales of Mongols waging war usually involve Genghis Khan massacring his way across 13th-century Asia. But Nevada has been host to modern-day Mongols, a SoCal motorcycle club whose rivalry with the Hells Angels has boiled over into Laughlin (2002: three bikers killed) and Las Vegas (2008: two bikers stabbed). The Mongols’ official blog explains the feud like so: “Outlaw bikers are among the last Americans honor bound to fight duels and sometimes these duels are fatal.” While the “outlaw” aspect is often expressed through social rather than criminal activity, the reputation looms large. Maybe too large.

On the heels of a Mongols rally in Boulder City last week, 78 plaintiffs (tied to the Mongols and three other motorcycle clubs) filed a suit in federal court seeking nearly $12 million in damages from Metro and North Las Vegas police. The bikers allege they have been “unlawfully targeted and harassed.” Maintaining their “mystique” shouldn’t mean sacrificing civil rights, but about those fatal duels ...

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