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Alleged Outlaw Biker: San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Deputy’s Double Life

In his professional career, Christopher Bingham served as a correctional deputy within the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department. However, under the covert identity of “Charles Tate,” he engaged in communications with members of the Mongols outlaw motorcycle gang, a group in which law enforcement authorities suspect he had significant involvement.

The preliminary hearing for Bingham took place at the San Bernardino Justice Center, commencing on Thursday, April 18, and scheduled to conclude on Monday. Prosecutor Alberto Juan presented evidence obtained from Bingham’s residence in Twentynine Palms during a raid on March 23, subsequent to his arrest in Riverside County earlier that same day following a traffic stop. The Sheriff’s Department reported that Bingham was riding Harley-Davidson motorcycles accompanied by two Mongols members donning fully patched vests.

During the search of Bingham’s home, investigators discovered approximately 160 firearms, firearm accessories, and explosive devices. Additionally, a variety of Mongols paraphernalia, such as a fully patched leather vest, Mongols T-shirts, stickers, literature, and other memorabilia, were seized. This search marked the culmination of an extensive four-month investigation.

Bingham was able to post bail after being charged with 10 felony counts, which included the alleged theft of a Remington 870 less-than-lethal shotgun from the Sheriff’s Department’s Morongo Basin station in Joshua Tree, as well as possession of a machine gun, a short-barreled AR-15 assault rifle, two explosive projectile devices, and four gun silencers.

Defense attorney Jeff G. Moore was present during the preliminary hearing at the San Bernardino Justice Center on April 18, 2024, closely following the proceedings. Several pieces of evidence, including Bingham’s motorcycle helmet and Mongols-related attire, were presented during the hearing, shedding light on his suspected association with the outlaw motorcycle gang.

The District Attorney’s Office later amended the complaint against Bingham, adding three more felony counts related to the possession of destructive devices. Bingham has denied the charges brought against him.

Testimony revealed that investigators extracted information from two cellphones seized during Bingham’s second arrest, uncovering his involvement in discussions related to Mongols activities on Instagram under the alias “Dirtycadyna” and the name Charles Tate. Conversations included topics such as Mongols tattoos, rallies, and the significance of “omerta,” a term denoting a code of silence within criminal circles.

Detective Joshua Gile testified that Bingham exhibited direct ties to the Mongols, as indicated by his interactions with fellow members and his derogatory remarks about law enforcement. Bingham’s motorcycle helmet, adorned with “omerta” and the number 1312 symbolizing a negative sentiment towards law enforcement, further underscored his alleged affiliation.

Despite Bingham’s claims of innocence regarding Mongols membership, evidence presented during the hearing, including Mongols-related stickers on his work locker and his wife’s statement regarding the purpose of the Mongols vest found at their residence, painted a different picture.

Amidst the legal proceedings, Bingham’s attorney raised concerns about the legitimacy of his client’s arrest, particularly questioning the handling of the firearm found in Bingham’s possession. The discrepancies surrounding the firearm registration added complexity to the case, with conflicting information arising during the investigation.

The unfolding events surrounding Christopher Bingham’s alleged ties to the Mongols outlaw motorcycle gang continue to unravel, prompting scrutiny and legal challenges as the case progresses.