IS IT A CRIME TO BELONG TO THE OUTLAWS MOTORCYCLE CLUB????
I was one of sixteen persons prosecuted in the first ever RICO case against the Outlaws Motorcycle Club. If you have read my case summary section, you have a good idea of how that went. It also set a precedent for violating the Constitutional Rights of Outlaws Motorcycle Club members from that day forward.
In the May 17, 1983 PreSentence Investigation Report (PSIR), the Prosecutor stated his version of the "crime."
"Reports of law enforcement personnel and testimony in the trial of this case reveal that Wilson Tony Harrell had been Regional President of the Outlaws Motorcycle Club. Also, he was the former President of the Jacksonville Chapter and was the current President of the Tampa Chapter at the time the indictment was returned. In these administrative capacities, Mr. Harrell was responsible for planning, management and follow-up of most of the organizationís activities."
That claim by the Prosecutor was close to being true. Actually, I was the founder and President of the Jacksonville Chapter from 1973 to 1975. I then reorganized the Orlando Chapter after it had been abandoned in 1974 and was President from 1975 to 1976. I then founded the Tampa Chapter and was chapter President until 1979, when I was elected Florida Regional President.
I remained Regional President until arrested on August 15, 1980 and sent to prison for a technical probation violation. I was on parole upon my release, and was not "the current President of the Tampa Chapter at the time the indictment was returned" or at any time since.
Since the RICO trial, I have been in continuous federal custody since 1982.
I was eligible for parole in 1992. In my Initial Parole Hearing process, Commissioner Simpson stated that: "I agree with Examiner Chait that accountability for subjectís role in this offense as President of the Outlaws Motorcycle Club requires service of a significant portion of his more than 40 year sentence." And: "To release Harrell, who is the President of the Club, at less than other individuals involved in this behavior, would promote disrespect for the law and depreciate the seriousness of the subjectís behavior in the community."
I had another parole hearing in November 1997. The summary of that hearing stated that: "The examiner is of the opinion that the subject was and is an integral part of the Outlaws Motorcycle Club and that he should be held responsible for being same." And: "The examiner views the subject as an Outlaw Motorcyclist and an ongoing and participating member in its endeavors. In the opinion of this examiner, the subject operated under the umbrella of the Outlaws Motorcycle Club in the 1970ís as he did in the 1990ís."
In my 2003 hearing summary, they state: "It is the opinion of this panel that the subject was an active member of the Outlaws Motorcycle Club, as well as acted in a leadership role during the periods in which the indictment covers for the actions of the group. Consequently, his conviction under the RICO Act would hold him liable for all actions and crimes committed by members within the organization."
The problem with this Parole Commission theory is that my 30+ years as an Outlaws Motorcycle Club member is not a crime, nor does it make me a professional career criminal.
The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guarantees people the right to assemble. Itís time for a court--not the Parole Commission, nor the Bureau of Prisons--- to decide if simply belonging to a motorcycle club is a crime.
Road Block 1%er