Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) San Francisco Field Division

01/24/2023 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 01/25/2023 08:51

Solano County Hells Angels Member Pleads Guilty to Firearms Offenses

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Michael Mahoney, 30, of Fairfield, pleaded guilty today to possessing a firearm with an obliterated or altered serial number and possessing an unregistered short-barreled shotgun, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

According to court documents, on Dec. 8, 2021, law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Mahoney's home as part of an investigation into a brutal beating at the clubhouse for the Vallejo chapter of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club. In October 2021, two different victims-both of whom were members of a different motorcycle club that is considered a "puppet" (or subordinate) club of the Hells Angels-were beaten by Mahoney and other club members based on perceived infractions of the Hells Angels' rules.

During the December 2021 search of Mahoney's Fairfield home, law enforcement found several firearms, including a Smith & Wesson .38-caliber revolver with a serial number that had been scratched off, as well as a Sears & Roebuck 12-gauge shotgun with a barrel that had been sawn off to approximately 12.75 inches in length. Mahoney had not registered his ownership of this short-barreled shotgun with the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record, as required by federal law.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Solano County District Attorney's Office, the Solano County Sheriff's Office, the Vacaville Police Department, the Vallejo Police Department, the Fairfield Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Aaron D. Pennekamp and Jason Hitt are prosecuting the case.

Mahoney is scheduled to be sentenced on May 2, 2023, by U.S. District Judge John A. Mendez. Mahoney faces a maximum statutory penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine for possessing a firearm with an obliterated or altered serial number. Mahoney also faces a maximum statutory penalty of 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine for possessing an unregistered short-barreled shotgun. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the U.S. Department of Justice launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.