Police bust Hells Angels house

An early-morning raid at the San Francisco clubhouse of the Hells Angels motorcycle group led to the arrest of one man already awaiting felony battery charges in Sonoma County.

The sweep, coordinated by the Petaluma Police Department, was aimed at gathering more evidence for an ongoing investigation related to assaults in February and March.

Law enforcement authorities raided three Hells Angels clubhouses — in Petaluma, Healdsburg and San Francisco — approximately 5 a.m. Wednesday, according to Petaluma Police Capt. Dave Sears.

San Francisco resident Mark Guardado and Healdsburg resident Jonathan Nelson were the focus of the raids; both men are accused of battery from two separate altercations at a pair of Petaluma restaurants earlier this year.

Authorities wanted evidence to determine if Nelson’s or Guardado’s actions were related to gang activities — an affiliation that would amount to increased jail sentences, Sears said.

“We did secure evidence at all three locations,” Sears said. “We feel we got what we’re looking for. Our next step is to investigate what relationship our evidence has to our suspects.”

Guardado, who was found at the San Francisco clubhouse, allegedly was arrested Wednesday after police found him in possession of a controlled substance.

Along with Petaluma police officers, camouflaged tactical members from the FBI and officers from the San Francisco Police Department took part in the raid on the San Francisco clubhouse, located near 23rd and Third streets, in the Dogpatch neighborhood of Potrero Hill.

Law enforcement officials also raided the San Francisco Hells Angels clubhouse in 2006 as part of a drug-trafficking investigation.

Dave Lopez, who has worked for 10 years at the Muni vehicle yard that neighbors the Hells Angels clubhouse, said he has never experienced any problems with the organization.

“Most of them are just working stiffs,” Lopez said. “They have some functions every now and then, but they’re never loud or disrespectful. I’ve never felt intimidated with them next door.”

According to a sign on the clubhouse, the Hells Angels have been cited by the Department of Building Inspection for a series of violations, including construction that was not permitted and exposed wiring.

No members from the Hells Angels could be reached for comment.

wreisman@sfexaminer.com

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