Bandidos Motorcycle Club: A Violent History in Texas

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A member of the Bandidos Motorcycle Club. (Getty)

Members of the Bandidos Motorcycle Club were at the center of a deadly shootout Sunday in Waco, Texas with the Cossacks Motorcycle Club.

Nine bikers were killed and 18 were injured in the shooting at the Twin Peaks restaurant, police said. There have been 170 gang members from five gangs charged in connection with the shooting, according to police.

The Bandidos, the world’s second largest motorcycle gang, started in Texas in 1966. It has been feuding with the Cossacks, a smaller club that also started in Texas, in 1969.

The FBI has designated the Bandidos as an outlaw motorcycle gang and the club has a history of violent crimes in its home state.

Here are five cases of violence involving the Bandidos MC:


1. A Bandidos Leader Is Accused in the Stabbing of 2 Cossacks During a 2013 Fight

Jack Lewis in police custody. (KTXS)

Jack Lewis in police custody. (KTXS)

The rivalry between the Cossacks and the Bandidos in Texas goes back to at least 2013.

According to the BigCountryHomePage.com, the president of the Abilene, Texas chapter of the Bandidos, Curtis Jack Lewis, was arrested in November 2013 on charges that he stabbed two members of the Cossacks during a fight outside a restaurant.

The Banditos’ Sergeant at Arms, Wesley Dale Mason, was also charged, according to KTXS.

Lewis is accused of stabbing one Cossack, while Mason stabbed another. Both of the Cossacks survived.

The case is set to go to a jury trial this summer.


2. The Bandidos Are Suspected of Gunning Down a Biker Trying to Start a Hells Angels Chapter

The Bandidos are suspected in the assassination of a biker who was trying to start a chapter of the Hells Angels in an area of Texas under the control of the Bandidos. The Hells Angels and Bandidos have long had a rivalry, with violent clashes around the world.

Anthony Benesh III was fatally shot by a sniper on March 18, 2006, according to the Austin Chronicle.

No one has been charged and the case remains open.


3. Police Say the Bandidos Murdered a Rival Biker During a Fight in Fort Worth

Three members of the Bandidos were charged in 2014 in the killing of a member of a rival motorcycle club, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Police charged Howard Wayne Baker, Nicholas Povendo and Robert Stover with murder in the shooting of 41-year-old Geoffrey Brady at a Fort Worth motorcycle bar in December.

Brady was a member of the Ghostriders Motorcycle Club.


4. The Gang’s Founder Was Convicted in the Murder of 2 Drug Dealers

The founder of the Bandidos, Donald Chambers, was convicted of murder, along with two other gang members, in 1972, just six years after the gang was founded, according to the Houston Chronicle.

Two drug dealers had sold the gang baking soda and claimed it was meth, court records from Chambers’ appeal show. The Bandidos abducted the two dealers, drove them to the desert and shot them with shotguns after forcing them to dig their own graves. They then burned their bodies.


5. 8 Bandidos Were Killed in an ‘Internal Purge’ in Canada

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An April, 2006 computer screen grab shows the site for the Bandidos Motorcycle Club. (Getty)

An “internal cleansing” by the Bandidos led to the largest mass killing in Ontario, Canada’s history in 2006. According to CTV, eight men were fatally shot and stuffed into cars that were abandoned southwestern Ontario in April 2006.

Six men were convicted in the killings. The Bandidos former international president, Jeff Pike, of Texas, was accused by authorities of ordering the murders, but was never charged.


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