Eleven members of Vagos, a rival motorcycle gang of the Hells Angels, were arrested today by an Arizona Department of Public Safety gang task force in connection with several violent crimes around Bullhead City.
Six of the 11 arrested during "Operation Catch 22" are repeat customers to the DPS task force, as they were arrested during "Operation Sand Castle" in December, 2010, under very similar circumstances.
According to a DPS spokesperson, the arrests are the result of an eight-month investigation into a "resurgence of violent crimes" related to Vagos, including some violent incidents involving patrons of local bars.
The most recent involved some alleged Vagos gangsters beating up a guy inside Lazy Harry's Lounge, dragging him out of the bar, and beating him up some more.
Along with another part of the investigation involving the Lake Havasu chapter of the Vagos, the 11 arrested racked up assorted charges including assaults, witness intimidation, drug sales, motorcycle theft, and possessing stolen property.
Ryan Welsch, 26 of Lake Havasu; Shawn Bailey, 36, of Bullhead City; and Gabriel Nader, 25, of Bullhead City, were each charged with aggravated assault and participating in a criminal street gang.
Bernard Prano, 55, of Lake Havasu; Peter Velliodis, 39, of Laughlin, Nevada; Paul Villegas, 41, of Lake Havasu; Robert Mann, 46, of Bullhead City; Robert Kellar, 36, of Bullhead City; and Daniel McDonald, 53, of Fort Mohave, were each hit with charges of transportation theft, possessing a vehicle with a defaced vehicle identification number, and participating in a criminal street gang.
Kenneth Gallego, 35, of Fort Mohave is charged with attempted intimidation of a witness, and Dale Smith, 52, of Mohave Valley, got hit with a charge of mishandling explosives.
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The Vagos members arrested for the second time in a DPS operation were Smith, Bailey, Nader, Kellar, Prano, and McDonald.
All of the alleged gangsters earned trips to the Mohave County Jail.
Vagos, for those keeping score, were involved in a shootout with the Hells Angels in which more than 50 shots were fired, but the death scoreboard showed zero.