General Discussion #88 – 11 Indicted for abusing SNAP benefits of FLDS followers

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Rulon Mormon Barlow Rulon Mormon Barlow turned himself in and will have his first appearance on Monday, February 29. He will probably get released with conditions like his wife Ruth Peine Barlow. How sweet, they’ll have matching ankle monitors.

The Feds are finally cracking down on the “Bleeding the Beast” practiced by the FLDS under orders from Warren Jeffs. John Wayman and Lyle Jeffs were arrested in Salt Lake City, Seth Jeffs was arrested in Custer, and 6 others have either been arrested or turn themselves in to Washington County officials.  Still in fugitive status are Kimbell Barlow and Rulon Mormon Barlow.

Preston Barlow, Ruth Peine, Krystal Dutson, Hyrum Dutson and Winiford Barlow have all been released with conditions including GSP monitoring.

John Wayman had a detention hearing on February 26 where Willie Jessop testified about him being the deep pockets for the FLDS and the Magistrate ordered him held without bail. He will have another hearing on March 10.

Seth Jeffs has a detention hearing in South Dakota set for Monday, February 29.

Lyle has a detention hearing set for March 7 which is expected to last all day.

According to Nephi Allred’s detention hearing will be Wednesday, March 2.

Edited: Seth finally made it to Utah, welcome home Seth!! He has a detention hearing on Monday, March 21.

~ by FLDS TEXAS on February 27, 2016.

57 Responses to “General Discussion #88 – 11 Indicted for abusing SNAP benefits of FLDS followers”


    Article about Willie setting up Lyle and Wayman!!

  2. Allred’s detention hearing is set for Wednesday, March 1.

    Or on Monday, February 29, if this source of information is accurate:

  3. Link to the indictment:

    Link to the Motion for Detention:

  4. Well that didn’t turn out as planned.

    Old dog. New tricks.

  5. And pfft to my post about Allred’s detention hearing.

    It is either set for Monday, February 29 or Wednesday, March 2.

  6. Rulon Mormon Barlow surrendered.

  7. From the Spectrum
    About eight years have passed since Colorado City resident Dan Wayman last spoke with his brother John, but unlike most stories of estranged siblings, the Waymans’ history revolves around the edicts of their religious leadership.

    But following a series of federal arrests and business raids in the Hildale-Colorado City polygamous community during the past week, as well as ongoing litigation in Arizona’s federal court over claims the cities’ administration acquiesces to religious control in civic matters, Dan said he and a lot of other local residents are hopeful a Berlin-like social divide in the community is ending.

    “I think there’s a lot of anticipation and hope that this will bring about some change,” he said Saturday. “Myself, I’m encouraged that this is a big step as far as breaking down the walls.”

    Members of the Hildale community hold a memorial serviceBuy Photo
    Members of the Hildale community hold a memorial service to remember the families lost to the flash flood Saturday, Sept. 26, 2015. (Photo: Chris Caldwell / The Spectrum & Daily News)
    In the meantime, people like Dan who were once members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints can only guess at exactly how those still in the faith, including numerous estranged family members, will respond to the latest arrests of FLDS leaders.

    Church prophet Warren Jeffs was convicted in St. George on a rape charge and then on child sexual assault charges in Texas in 2011, which led to his current life-plus-20 years prison sentence there after the Utah verdict was overturned.

    Several other church leaders were convicted in Texas at the time on similar but less severe charges, stemming from the FLDS leaders’ reported practice of marrying underaged girls to much older men.

    The federal grand jury indictment unsealed Tuesday names 11 church leaders and FLDS food distribution network directors as defendants in a vast fraud diverting government food stamp money to church officials.

    Numerous officers, some wearing vests that identified them as FBI while others wore sheriff labels, entered businesses in the stateline polygamous community searching for evidence connected to the alleged laundering of more than $12 million in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits utilizing hundreds of church members as participants.

    The 11 suspects’ arrests have taken place on a piecemeal basis, the latest occurring Saturday when Rulon Mormon Barlow, 45, of Hildale turned himself in at the Purgatory Correctional Facility. He will make his initial appearance in federal court Monday. Only Hildale resident Kimball Dee Barlow, 51, now remains at large.

    Rulon Mormon Barlow
    Rulon Mormon Barlow (Photo: Purgatory Correctional Facility)
    John Wayman, a former congregational bishop in the polygamous church, was arrested in Salt Lake City with current bishop Lyle Jeffs. The men have been identified by outsiders as the top two authorities in the church aside from the imprisoned prophet.

    Also among the arrests was Seth Steed Jeffs, the bishop of a growing South Dakota congregation and another of the prophet’s brothers.

    Colorado City resident Lorin Holm, an exiled member, said the FLDS faithful likely won’t see much of an immediate difference when they gather for worship services Sunday.

    “Nothing’s changed, really. They’ve got a support system. … They’ve got a bishop. They’ll say, ‘The Lord will work it out,’” Holm said.

    “Lyle wasn’t there (at church) anyway,” Colorado City resident Ross Chatwin said. “Lyle’s been kind of on the run for six to seven months and the ones that are the highest of the (dedicated United Order) are not here any more. They moved out months ago.”

    Not that they’ve gone far, Chatwin said. Despite reports of the large FLDS property development in South Dakota, Chatwin said the church is starting to build up significant membership bases near New Harmony and west of Kanab.

    “I talked to one person the other day and they said, ‘You’ve got to be glad (about the arrests).’ And I said, ‘We’re not either. We’re praying for you,’” Holm said.

    Growing number of exiles

    Dan Wayman said he was saddened by the news about his brother’s arrest and a Friday court hearing in which U.S. Magistrate Judge Dustin Pead denied John’s initial request to be set free pending a trial.

    “But he’s kind of chosen to be where he is,” Dan said. “I can vouch for his loyalty to Warren. I really hate to say it about John, but I really think he would be loyal to Warren even if he knew it was wrong.”

    The irony for Dan and other exiles is that they are left to wonder if they would be just as loyal to church leaders if they hadn’t been sent away.

    Dan said Warren Jeffs told him 12 years ago that he no longer had the priesthood and needed to leave and repent, although he wasn’t told what he needed to repent of.

    Holm said he experienced a similar situation when he was told to surrender his property and family in 2011. He later became the first FLDS exile to successfully sue for custody of the underaged children who remained with his estranged wives.

    Lorin Holm, an exiled member of the FundamentalistBuy Photo
    Lorin Holm, an exiled member of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, wipes away a tear as he describes his hopes for the future of his family during a child custody hearing between Holm and his two ex-wives, who still belong to the FLDS Church, in St. George’s 5th District Court in 2014. (Photo: Jud Burkett / The Spectrum & Daily News)
    Holm said Saturday that his estranged family members were under the religiously organized caretakership of John Wayman, and that John “turned my family against me, my daughters.”

    But now, like Dan Wayman, he thinks the community is beginning to heal.

    “I think the tyranny’s lifted and the children are going to be out more, playing. But the inner group (of church faithful) is being more fervent,” he said.

    Terrill Musser, who organized a pair of Colorado City rallies in support of the federal government’s intervention, posted a Facebook statement about the past week’s events, writing, “Its sad to see our friends and families that we all know be caught in impossible situations. But its our time to stand up as a community and take this town back. Not as separate people but all of us together. … Anger and Hate will not solve this. Taking action and getting involved with your community WHEN something is not working there is only two choices.”

    Dan said most of those who still profess loyalty to the church are “so sucked into the system” that they don’t know about the criminal and alleged criminal activity of their leaders.

    “Most of those people are fine people, as far as I’m concerned. I don’t think they’re trying to do wrong,” he said.

    But it still stings to remember how, when he was exiled more than a decade ago, church members wouldn’t speak to him.

    “Maybe once or twice a month. … Now there are other people in the same kind of situation. Hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of them,” he said.

    That was exemplified by the Fourth of July gathering last year in Colorado City — the first time the holiday has been publicly celebrated in years. An estimated 3,000 people had passed through the breakfast line by 10 a.m., as estranged members from various states and Canada visited among the crowd.

    A second annual event is planned this year, and a Facebook site is attempting to raise funds to help defray costs.

    “We’re normal. We want to have a normal life even though the FLDS have given us a bad name,” Chatwin said, adding that he and dozens of other exiles meet often on Saturdays to enjoy board games and other activities.

    “We want to not grow apart, but grow together,” he said. “If our kids are going to be normal, they’ve got to have a social life.”

    Follow Kevin Jenkins, @SpectrumJenkins. Call him at 435-674-6253.

    July 4th information

  8. So they were set up by Willie Jessop? Interesting.
    Been pretty obvious for a long time now that the govt has been trying to force a leadership change.

  9. Nate Carlisle article in the Tribune provides some insight as to the scope of the investigation that led to this indictment.

    ‘Palmer said the working group is still investigating the FLDS and will continue to pursue the food-stamp case through the prosecutions.

    Belnap said the working group will investigate every credible complaint.

    “There may be some kind of assumption that nothing’s going on because you don’t hear about it,” he said, “but work is going on continually.”‘


    CNN’s coverage of the win by the DOJ in the trial of civil rights discriminations by the towns of Hildale and Colorado City that are controlled by Warren Jeffs. The jury found guilty on every count including one that the Marshall’s office is corrupt. They also found damages between $5,000 to $1 million for each person listed discriminated against.

    The parties have 10 days to resolve the issue of the Marshall’s office and other problems or the Judge will make rulings about them. I don’t think that the towns will willingly be decertified so I hope the Judge steps in and does it for them and disbands the Marshall’s office to be replaced by Mojave and Washington County Sheriff’s.

  11. What a find interesting is that two women are charged.

  12. Does anyone know if Thomas Merril Jessop (4/13/89) was married or had kids? He is the son of Merril Jessop and Barbara Seed.

  13. ” I don’t think that the towns will willingly be decertified so I hope the Judge steps in and does it for them and disbands the Marshall’s office to be replaced by Mojave and Washington County Sheriff’s.”…Both Utah AND Arizona have chosen to ignore the problem. In 2013 Arizona failed to pass legislation to decertify, if memory serves.

  14. To A @ March 16, 2016 at 3:31 pm – I don’t think that Thomas was ever married. He was too young to be assigned any wives before Warren cut off all marriages in 2006. Thomas’ youngest sister Merrianne was one of the last marriages when she was married to Warren Jeffs. I believe his older half brother Ernest was given a new wife after the Merrianne/Warren marriage, in August 2006 right before Warren was caught.

    Unless I’m mistaken, Ernest was the last FLDS marriage on record.

    Is Thomas Merril Jessop out of the cult now?

  15. Utah Supreme Court gives OK for ex-FLDS woman to sue UEP trust —-

    The Utah Supreme Court on Wednesday said a polygamous sect’s charitable trust can be held liable for Warren Jeffs’ role in forcing a 14-year-old girl to marry.
    The ruling sends the case back to a lower court where the former child bride, Elissa Wall, may seek up to $40 million.
    Salt Lake Tribune Mar 23, 2016

  16. Can Bruce “John” Wisan’s victim sue the trust?

  17. The new Short Creek Bishop is Ben Johnson, whoever that is.
    “Federal Judge Ted Stewart also placed one unusual condition on Allred: he cannot have contact with Ben Johnson, who prosecutors Wednesday described as the new FLDS bishop in Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City, Ariz., the traditional home of the FLDS.”

  18. It could be an interesting Wednesday…..

    Is the end nigh for Warren Jeffs’ polygamist cult? As its remaining leaders fight jail time and members flee, its faithful swear the Apocalypse will begin on Wednesday .
    On Wednesday, as Fundamentalist Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) leader Lyle Jeffs enters court on major fraud charges and his brother, convicted pedophile Warren Jeffs, languishes in jail, an apocalyptic miracle will tear down the buildings they are in and free them.

    At least, that’s what their followers believe. ‘I am hearing from people inside the FLDS that on April 6 there is going to be a kind of apocalypse,’ ex-follower Elissa Wall told The Guardian Sunday. ‘It is prophesied.’

    Read more:

  19. Today’s the day, the world is coming to an apocalyptic end according to Warren. Everyone one near Palestine, Texas better batten down the hatches for the impending earthquake that will cause the walls of Warren’s cell to crumble. A separate incident will happen in SLC where the walls of the Federal Courthouse will split allowing his brother Lyle to walk free.

    If you are near one of these places and especially if you are attending Lyle’s hearing please don’t forget your hard hat and shovel, just in case!!

  20. Brown Case: the 10th Circuit has just vacated Judge Waddoups decision in the Brown (Sister Wives) lawsuit, which had ended the Utah ban on polygamy (the anti-bigamy/cohabitation law). The court felt that the matter was not in controversy due to Utah county’s non-prosecution policy. The Browns have 14 days to request re-argument.

  21. So, has the world ended?

  22. Where is everyone?

  23. Interesting story about a boy who was seized in both the Texas raid and the Idaho rehabilitation house.

  24. Hi, my name is Sarah Scoles, and I’m a reporter working on an article related to the FLDS. I don’t see a way to contact you on here, but I would really like to have your insights about a few topics, including the system of houses of hiding. If you’re interested (and I hope you are), please send me an email at Thanks for considering it!

  25. Lyle Jeffs has fled house arrest custody relative to his recent indictment:

  26. LoL History repeats itself.

  27. Fox 13 on Lyle:

  28. Welcome, Sarah.

  29. Short Creek Historian Benjamin Bistline, a resident of Cane Beds AZ, has died at 81.

  30. Bistline’s book is by far the most thorough written history of the Short Creek community, and it was published just before Warren’s well documented reign of terror.

  31. I agree that Ben Bistline’s books of Short Creek and the FLDS are the most thorough written history of the community. He had a front row seat.

    From what I have been told the July 4th celebration was a success and there were several families reunited during the weekend. I hope that this trend continues.

  32. Several are suing Rod Parker and his law firm.

    The way Rod held himself out as representing the FLDS people when he showed up in Texas has always made me wonder why no one sued him for malpractice sooner.

  33. A number of FLDS were piled into the post office getting passports yesterday.

  34. Has anyone heard if there’s been a October court case about the food card fraud? I haven’t heard anything……Would like to know? There’s lawsuits against Hildale/Colorado City Utilities,haven’t heard any news about Utilities either,any news is grateful to know…….other–Anon

  35. The hunt for Warren Jeffs’ lost child brides: Three girls married off to Warren Jeffs aged 12 and 13 are still missing 12 years later as polygamist father who has 145 CHILDREN goes on trial for arranging ceremonies
    Three young girls who were married off to polygamist leader Warren Jeffs 12 years ago are still missing, as their sect leader in Canada is on trial for arranging the cross border wedding ceremonies.

    Canada’s biggest polygamist, Winston Blackmore, 59, is currently being prosecuted by the Canadian government for polygamy, as the leader of the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) community in Bountiful, British Columbia has a total of 27 wives and 145 children.

    The charges against FLDS Bishop Winston Blackmore came after Special Prosecutor Peter Wilson approved three ‘unlawful removal of a child from Canada…’ charges against three members of the same polygamous community of Bountiful.

    The three members, Brandon J. Blackmore, his wife, Emily Ruth Gail Blackmore and FLDS Bishop James Oler, were charged by authorities with alleged child trafficking offences that originate from 2004 and 2005 when they reportedly sent three under age girls – Millie Blackmore, Alyshia Rae Blackmore and Nolita Collen Blackmore – across the Canadian border to marry the now imprisoned FLDS leader Jeffs.
    Brandon J. Blackmore and Emily Blackmore are now separated as husband and wife, but their charges center on the couple’s 13-year-old daughter, Millie Blackmore, who was married off to a then-48-year-old Jeffs in 2004.

    According to VICE, their son and her half-brother, Brandon S. Blackmore revealed the FLDS leader married Millie moments before he presided over his wedding ceremony in Colorado City, Arizona, as he was a member of Jeff’s flock at the time.

    Millie Blackmore is not the only sibling of Brandon S. Blackmore who was married to Jeffs, as Annie Mae Blackmore was married to the FLDS leader at an unknown date.

    Apparently Jeffs sent word to their father in Canada that he also wanted to take on Millie Blackmore as a bride.

    A March 1, 2004 journal entry dictated by Jeffs to one of his wives and was later confiscated by U.S. authorities in Texas apparently reveals what happened.
    ‘I sat down with Brandon [J] Blackmore and his wife and his daughter, gave a training on the redemption of Zion in brief, in summary, and this girl was called on a mission, and they received it joyfully,’ the entry reads.

    ‘And there Mildred Marlene Blackmore, age 13, was sealed to Warren Steed Jeffs for time and all eternity.’
    It also notes that her father witnessed the ceremony to Jeffs, as Brandon S. Blackmore had no idea she had got married the same day or even that she was in Colorado City at the time.

    He explained to VICE that he didn’t see Millie Blackmore for years around the Bountiful community, as people claimed that she was ‘on a mission for the church.’

    In 2013, investigators with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) asked Brandon S. Blackmore to listen to a recording of Jeffs having sex, as they wanted to know if the person on the tape was his teenage half-sister.

    Even though her name was not said aloud on the tape, he could tell that it was his half-sister’s voice and told RCMP investigators.

    ‘He was asking her how it felt and a bunch of weird things,’ Brandon S. Blackmore told VICE in an interview.

    Brandon S. Blackmore shared that RCMP investigators told him the tape with Jeffs and his half-sister was recorded sometime around 2004 or 2005 at a motel in New Mexico.

    Rachel Jeffs, the 32-year-old daughter from the FLDS leaders’ second marriage confirmed that a series of teenage girls, including Millie Blackmore, had arrived to their household. Rachel, who left the sect in 2015, told VICE that when she inquired about who the girls were, she was told they would be new wives for her father.
    She explained that she never asked her father about why he married girls who were underage.

    ‘If you do, then you lose your place in the church,’ Rachel explained.

    ‘I wasn’t so worried about losing my place in the church. I just would never get to see my family again.’

    She shared that she remembered the teenage Millie Blackmore crying a lot.

    Rachel added that the situation worsened when Alyshia Rae Blackmore and Nolita Colleen Blackmore arrived in December 2005 at the Yearning for Zion ranch, which is a compound for the FLDS in Texas.

    ‘I saw her struggle emotionally a lot,’ Rachel said of Millie. ‘She wasn’t really stable.’

    Now, Mounties with the RCMP are searching for Millie Blackmore along with two other Canadian women, Alyshia Rae Blackmore and Nolita Collen Blackmore.

    The other two women were also married to Jeffs when they were aged 12, as authorities believe all three of the women are now in their early to mid 20s.

    It is believed that the three missing women are loyal to Jeffs, as many women apart of the sect are taught to be loyal to their husbands.
    It’s thought that Millie Blackmore, Alyshia Rae Blackmore and Nolita Collen Blackmore are all living on one of the many FLDS compounds in the U.S., or are being housed at secret locations that are known as ‘Houses of Hiding’ among members who are waiting for Jeffs to be released from prison (even though he is serving a life sentence).

    The charges against Brandon J. Blackmore and Emily Blackmore are thought to be the first time that any parents within the religion have faced in relation to the reported pipeline of child brides that operated for years between the FLDS sects in Bountiful and the headquarters in Colorado City, Arizona and Hildale, Utah, according to VICE.

    Oler is accused of having taken a 15-year-old girl across the Canadian border to the U.S. to marry then-24-year-old James Leroy.

    Oler was also charged with polygamy along with his brother-in-law Winston Blackmore, who faced the same charge previously years ago.

    In 2007, Winston Blackmore was first arrested for polygamy, but those charges were later dropped over concerns of how the special prosecutor was selected, the Salt Lake City Tribune reported.

    Winston Blackmore was charged again in 2014, and recently claimed that he and his wives are officially ‘friends’, adding that despite them being friends, ‘they still charge us with polygamy’.

    Officials say much of the evidence for the cases against Winston Blackmore and the other three members stem from the investigation into Jeffs.

    All of the marriages within the FLDS have been reportedly stopped since Jeffs arrest, but it’s unclear if members of the religion have continued to transport child brides across the border.

    Authorities in both the US and Canada have been searching for signs of human trafficking and other crimes that could possibly be happening by members of the FLDS.

    It’s unclear if more charges are expected to be filed against FLDS members, as RCMP sergeant Terry Jacklin told VICE that the investigation continues into their marriages.

    A verdict in the case against Brandon J. Blackmore and Emily Blackmore is now in the hands of British Columbia Supreme Court Justice Paul Pearlman, who is expected to deliver his decision on February 3.

    Read more:
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

  36. Interesting interview with a Warren Wife

  37. The 2017 Utah legislature is currently grappling with another bill pertaining to the legal status of plural marriage. The bill is said to “re-criminalize” polygamy, but amendments are being proposed that could decriminalize it.

    Here is a news story:

    Here is the bill:

  38. Utah HB99 is in position number ten on the floor of the legislature. I’m guessing it will be dealt with on Tuesday.

  39. The “purport” parts render that bill completely useless.

    Any law that targets the free speech of an unpopular religious group is obviously unconstitutional.

  40. Lyle Jeffs got popped.

  41. I can’t tell how active this blog is – there seem to be years-old messages mixed in with items only a couple of months old. Nonetheless, I have found the blog informative in the past and, for whatever use it may be to followers of the blog, I want to share with you a photo archive on the Mancos FLDS.

    I have been following the Mancos FLDS since October 2004, when their presence in the Mancos Valley first hit the news. My wife joined me in this photo reconnaissance in 2008. We last visited the Mancos FLDS properties on July 30, 2017. Together, we have accumulated a photographic record of those properties that totals more than 1,800 pictures – and we will continue to add updates at least annually. (There are gaps in 2010 and 2011, which we may be able to fill in eventually.)

    In order for this record of the development of the FLDS in the Mancos Valley to be available to researchers who are, like me, trying to figure out how this property fits into the overall scheme of FLDS holdings, I have added the entire archive to Facebook at The title is “Mancos FLDS” and the photos have been posted in albums chronologically, so the July 2017 pictures are at the top of the site and the October 2004 pictures are the earliest posting.

    As time allows, I will go back intermittently and annotate the albums and pictures, but please contact me at if you have questions about any of the pictures posted there.

    Tom Vaughan
    (Editor of the Mancos Times newspaper till May 30, 2006.)

  42. Polygamous fundamentalists say they are victims of ‘cultural cleansing’ as they are evicted from their homes by the Government
    •A polygamous group of fundamentalists fears their community is being destroyed by ‘cultural cleansing’
    •Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has 7,000 members across mid-west cities
    •Members of the have been evicted from their homes in Hildale, community on the Utah-Arizona border

    But the group, which split from the mainstream Mormon Church over the practice of plural marriage, refused to leave the community, with many moving into trailers.
    They believe the money was being used by attorneys to take legal action against them.
    The sect, which is 7,000-strong and lives across several mid-west towns, has been accused of discriminating against non-believers by, for example, denying them access to water pumps.
    Members believe the evictions were accelerated this year to clean out voter rolls and rig upcoming local elections to usher in outside candidates.
    On Tuesday city hall elections could deal a crushing blow to the group if voters choose candidates for mayor and two council seats who don’t belong to them.
    In a place where political contests are virtually unknown, the campaign signs offer the latest hint that a polygamous group is losing its grip on this remote red rock community which was founded in the early 20th century.
    ‘For Hildale mayor vote Donia,’ reads one sign featuring Donia Jessop, a candidate pictured with a contemporary hairstyle and a red business suit.
    The signs hanging from fences and walls are unusual because elections here have long been decided behind the scenes by the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, a Mormon offshoot that has made its home among the rocks for more than a century and hand-picked men to run unopposed.
    Just five years ago, Jessop was a member of the group also known as the FLDS. She wore the sect’s traditional prairie dresses and her hair in a conservative up-do.
    Now she is among a swelling number of former members who have returned to buy foreclosed homes, open businesses and try to turn Hildale into a place that resembles a typical Western town, not a cloistered religious community.
    The competitive elections scheduled for Tuesday could deal a crushing blow to traditionalists if the 367 registered voters elect Jessop and the non-FLDS candidates for two city council seats.
    It would be another in a series of recent changes to shake up Hildale and its sister city, Colorado City, Arizona, which have a combined population of nearly 7,800.
    The government-ordered evictions of sect families from nearly 150 homes forced many members to seek refuge in trailers around town or in different cities across the West.
    The town governments and the police are being watched closely by court-appointed monitors after a jury found them guilty of civil rights violations. And a food-stamp fraud case led 10 people to plead guilty and exacerbated a leadership void.
    Jessop and other former sect members hail the changes as long-overdue progress that will help the community break free from the reign of sect leader Warren Jeffs, who is serving life in prison in Texas for sexually assaulting underage girls he considered brides.
    ‘The things that were happening in the church were so destructive. And now that destruction can stop, and we can start to rebuild,’ Jessop said. ‘This city is completely at a standstill until we change the city government.’
    But FLDS members believe the town they built is being destroyed. Norma Richter, a 50-year-old mother of 13 kids, said the changes overtaking the town feel like ‘a cultural cleansing,’ echoing a common refrain among church members and sympathizers.
    At the heart of the split is Jeffs, who has been jailed in Utah or Texas continually since 2006.
    His followers consider him a prophet and believe he was the victim of religious persecution based on fabricated allegations. Former sect members and outsiders consider him a dangerous man who tore apart families and committed sex crimes.
    Jeffs is ‘a very sick man’ who controls the people through ‘fear of not making it to the highest celestial kingdom of glory,’ Jessop said. She notes that it was he and other leaders who set the evictions in motion more than a decade ago when they opted not to challenge in court allegations of mismanagement of the church trust, leading Utah and Arizona governments to take it over.
    His supporters are steadfast in their beliefs. Jeffs is ‘still is the only man on this earth that can receive revelation from heavenly father for the people,’ FLDS member Lori Barlow said. ‘That’s a pretty important link to me.’
    Authorities say Jeffs still sends some guidance from prison, but Richter says followers have not heard his voice for years and that it’s unclear who is in charge of the church locally.
    One of Jeffs’ brothers, Lyle Jeffs, ran the day-to-day operations until last year, when he was arrested in the food-stamp case. He fled home confinement while awaiting trial and was captured in South Dakota after a year on the run. He faces up to five years in prison.
    Amid the leadership void, and with so few people left in town, followers no longer meet for regular worship services, Richter said. Marriages that are arranged by the religion’s prophet are on hold until Jeffs returns, Richter added.
    Other signs of the sect’s dwindling presence abound. Public elementary and high schools that reopened several years ago are now bustling with some 500 kids, despite most FLDS families home-schooling their children.
    Women and girls in prairie dresses used to be seen all around town – pumping gas, riding horses and chatting. Now they are harder to find. Several new businesses are opening, including a brewery and hotels – and a Subway.
    Incumbent Mayor Philip Barlow, a member of the FLDS and lifelong Hildale resident, said people are coping with change by ‘doing what they have to do.’
    He acknowledges that having a challenger is new but says he will accept whatever the voters decide.
    Jessop wants to make the town an accepting place for everyone. She said she would love to rekindle fond memories of growing up there with her two mothers and 25 siblings.
    ‘I would love to see families reunited,’ she said. ‘I want them to stay. They are my sisters, my brothers, my aunts, cousins, uncles. They are my people.’
    Jessop left the FLDS four years ago with her husband and 10 kids over unrest about how Jeffs was running the group. She and her husband later brought a ‘sister wife’ into the family, and the two women now raise their children and run the family business together.
    When she returned, Jessop bought one of the foreclosed houses and reopened a corner gas station as a convenience store. If elected, she would be the town’s first female mayor.
    Richter said FLDS members won’t cower no matter what happens at the ballot box.
    ‘We have a very good man as a leader, but we follow a religion,’ she said. ‘They have not conquered us. They can take everything, but they can’t conquer our spirit.’
    By Charlie Moore For Mailonline and Associated Press

    Published: 06:35 EDT, 3 November 2017 | Updated: 11:58 EDT, 3 November 2017

  43. Looks like the Mexican law caught up with Orson Black last night.

  44. CRIME
    11/06/2017 11:23 pm ET Huffington Post

    US Polygamist Busted In Mexico Following Deaths Of Three Young Americans

    A police raid that included Mexican and American law enforcement officials caught the wanted man, who years ago fled Arizona on pedophilia charges.
    U.S. polygamist cult leader Orson William Black Jr., on the run from Arizona authorities on charges of pedophilia, has been detained in Mexico following the deaths of three young Americans, Mexican officials said.
    Black was nabbed Sunday along with his four wives and 22 others — several of them children — who were living on their “El Negro” compound in the Mexican state of Chihuahua, according to a statement from the Chihuahua Attorney General’s Office. Some 100 Mexican police and security officers, FBI agents and U.S. DEA officers stormed the three homes on the compound.
    During the raid, authorities discovered scores of preserved wild animal heads and carcasses, including zebras, buffaloes, red foxes, black squirrels, a lion and a bear rug, and elephant feet.
    A stuffed zebra head found on Black’s compound in Chihuahua, Mexico.
    Black, 56, is a suspect in the September murders of three American citizens. They have been identified as brothers Michael Black, 15, and Robert W. Black, 19, and Jesse Barlow, 23, the BBC reported. It’s not clear what their connection is to the elder Black. Mexican authorities only identified the victims by their first names and the initial “B” for their last names.
    Authorities became suspicious that Black was linked to the deaths after no one claimed the bodies, even though they reportedly lived on Black’s compound and had been identified by members of the community, the attorney general’s statement said. They had no birth certificates.
    For now, Black — who also goes by the name Larry William Black — and his group are being held on illegal immigration, wildlife smuggling and animal cruelty charges, according to the attorney general’s statement.
    Black has been wanted for almost 15 years in Arizona to face pedophilia charges. He was charged in 2003 in Mohave County, Arizona, with five felony counts of sexual misconduct with two underage girls who became his wives, according to a 2003 report in the Phoenix New Times. Black and one of the girls conceived a boy born in December 1998 who was named Robert William Black, according to the New Times. It’s not known if the boy was one of the murder victims, identified as Robert W. Black, but he would be almost 19 years old now.
    Black was a member of Warren Jeffs’ polygamist Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, according to the BBC. Jeffs is currently serving life in prison for sexually assaulting two underage girls he took as “brides.” Black and his group of followers are known as “La Comuna,” according to Sky TV.
    Black’s compound is located in a region in the town of Cuauhtémoc that’s home to a Mennonite community that was founded in 1922.

  45. Two days ago the Mexican government rescued 26 people from Orson Black’s settlement in the colonia menonita. They are all being held by the Mexican immigration authority. Discussed in the article are Orson’s wife Alejandra and son Sam. The article is in Spanish:

  46. New lawsuit filed:

  47. Here is the court filing:

    Click to access JEFFS%20COURT%20SEX%20ABUSE%20COMPLAINT_1514420040777_30655318_ver1.0.pdf

  48. I just found out about this!
    11 employees resign after Utah town elects its first female mayor —-
    Several Hildale, Utah, city employees belonging to the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) have resigned after the election of four non-members to city council and mayoral positions. The mayor, Donia Jessop, is the town’s first female leader and a former member of the polygamous sect.
    According to St. George News, at least one of the 11 city employees cited religion in his resignation, saying his beliefs prevented him from “following a woman, and from serving on a board with apostates,” or people who aren’t in the religion, which has previously been disowned by the Mormon Latter-Day Saints.
    Hildale is a community of fewer than 3,000 people, 20 percent of which are FLDS members. Voters elected Jessop by 25 votes in November against the FLDS-backed incumbent in the town’s first election in its 100-year history. Previously, church members sponsored town leadership. Jessop and non-FLDS council members Maha Layton, Jared Nichols, and Jvar Dutson were sworn in in January. —- The Daily Dot 2-12-18

  49. The NPR piece on the Hildale resignations:

  50. Wendell Loy Nielsen and Michael George Emack have been deeded their Short Creek houses by UEP:

  51. Today, Canadian law again upheld the constitutionality of Canada’s laws against polygamy:

  52. Under Trump’s new immigration policy, can we not just deport all these crazy pligs back to Mexico or some other place?

  53. Warren Jeffs’ Utah home converted into sober living house
    ABC News

    By brady mccombs, associated press
    SALT LAKE CITY — May 4, 2018, 3:59 PM ET

    A sprawling 44-bedroom house surrounded by towering brick walls that was the home base for polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs has been converted into a sober living center by Evangelical missionaries. It’s the latest sign of his group’s dwindling control of the small community on the Utah-Arizona border.

    Jeffs hasn’t lived in the three-story home known as the “Big House” for years because he’s serving a life sentence in Texas for sexually assaulting underage girls he considered brides. In his absence, his religious group known as the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, or FLDS, has been weakened amid government crackdowns and an exodus of members who were kicked out or decided to leave.

    The 29,000-square-foot house that was built around 2000 has been modernized, but remnants of Jeffs’ legacy remain.

    A secret room under the home’s main entrance can only be accessed through a linen closet by pulling a hidden latch that resembles a light switch that allows a person to slide open the shelving and push open a door, said Glyn and Jena Jones, who run the sober living center. The safe that Jeffs used to store religious records remains inside.

    On the outside of the chimney, letters run vertically that read, “Pray and obey.” Inside the house, there is still wiring that was likely used for surveillance cameras and to tap into phones throughout the house, the Joneses said.

    The home is among about 150 that have been redistributed to former sect members in recent years after a church-run trust was seized by the Utah state government. A couple of homes have been converted into bed and breakfasts.

    Jeffs’ 65th wife, Briell Decker, was granted the right to buy the home for a discounted price of $600,000 by a community board overseeing the redistribution. Decker, who left the FLDS some six years ago, said she didn’t have enough money so she sought someone who would help her turn a house that stood as a symbol of oppression to her and other former sect members into something that would spark hope.

    That’s how she met the Joneses, a California couple who said they felt called by God three years ago to move with their teenage daughter to the community that straddles the Utah-Arizona border. They are affiliated with the faith-based Dream Center network out of Phoenix that has 267 centers around the world.

    An arrangement allows the Dream Center to lease the house for a year with an option to buy it if everything goes well, said Jeff Barlow, executive director of the organization that oversees properties in the trust in the sister cities of Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City, Arizona.

    The Jones said they hope the ” Short Creek Dream Center ” helps former FLDS members transition into life outside of the secluded sect and receive life skills help, said the Joneses. They plan to focus on women and people in need of a sober living environment. They also want to make the house a place where the community can gather and reconnect by playing basketball, video games or board games and watching movies and having potluck dinners. There is a chapel for Sunday worship.

    Sponsors adopt rooms and choose the decor. There are more than 50 bathrooms and two commercial sized kitchens in the house and capacity for about 70 people, Glyn Jones said.

    The community’s demographics are shifting as former members seize more control of a town at the foot of picturesque red rock cliffs that had been run for a century by leaders of the sect, which is a radical offshoot of mainstream Mormonism whose members believe polygamy brings exaltation in heaven.

    Polygamy is a legacy of the early teachings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but the mainstream church abandoned the practice in 1890 and now strictly prohibits it.

    Decker, 32, is remarried and now lives in the Salt Lake City area. She was known as Lynette Warner when she was forced into an arranged marriage with Jeffs at the age of 18, which she said made her feel terrified.

    She said she lived in the house for about four months but Warren Jeffs was never there because he was on the run from the FBI on accusations of child sexual abuse. She called the conversion of the house a “dream come true.”

    “I wanted it to benefit other people,” Decker said. “I wanted people leaving the religion to have somewhere to land.”

  54. Polygamous group lets go of sprawling Arizona worship center
    By brady mccombs, associated press
    SALT LAKE CITY — Dec 10, 2018, 6:46 PM ET

    A polygamous group based on the Utah-Arizona border is letting go of the sprawling building where its members worshipped, in the latest sign that the sect run by imprisoned leader Warren Jeffs is crumbling and losing control of the community it ruled for a century.
    The group known as the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, or FLDS, now has nowhere to gather for worship services after the nearly 53,000 square-foot (4,900 square-meter) building was taken over last week as part of government-ordered evictions that have taken away about 200 homes and buildings from members who refuse to pay property taxes and $100-a-month occupancy fees.
    The meetinghouse with capacity for several thousand people is valued at $2.8 million and sits on about 7 acres (2.8 hectares) in the remote red rock community, on the Arizona side of the border.
    The building has a stage, a church-like setup for services and classrooms for religious education but has not been used for at least six months, Jeff Barlow said Monday. He is the executive director of a government-appointed organization that oversees a former church trust that has properties in the sister cities of Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City, Arizona.
    The FLDS doesn’t have a spokesperson to comment about the development.
    The sect is experiencing a major leadership void with Warren Jeffs serving a life sentence for sexually assaulting underage girls he considered brides and his brother Lyle Jeffs serving nearly a five-year sentence for his role in carrying out an elaborate food stamp fraud scheme and for escaping home confinement while awaiting trial.
    Members have said they have been worshipping at home on their own.
    The lack of local leaders meant nobody stepped up to take responsibility for the building when Barlow’s organization warned an eviction was imminent, said Christine Katas, who lives in the community and serves as an intermediary between Barlow’s organization and the FLDS. Rank-and-file members don’t believe they have the authority to do so, she said.
    “It’s very sad for the FLDS. I’ve seen people cry over it,” Katas said. “Both sides are stuck between a rock and a hard place. Everybody wishes there was a different outcome.”
    The evictions have led many FLDS members to take refuge in trailers around town or move away, while former members have purchased the homes and buildings and moved back. Group members don’t believe they should have to pay for what belonged to a communal church trust that the state of Utah took over more than a decade ago amid mismanagement.
    The evictions are part of the shifting demographics in the sister cities of about 7,700 people. Non-sect members last year won control of the mayor’s office and town council in Hildale, Utah and nearly did the same in municipal elections in Colorado City.
    The town government and police are being watched closely by court-appointed monitors after a jury found past town and police leaders guilty of civil rights violations. Sprawling homes that used to belong to Warren Jeffs have been converted into beds and breakfast and sober living centers.
    Members of the group still consider their leader and prophet to be Warren Jeffs, even though he has been in jail in Utah or Texas continually since 2006
    Polygamy is a legacy of the early teachings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but the mainstream church abandoned the practice in 1890 and now strictly prohibits it.
    The Salt Lake Tribune first reported the eviction of the meetinghouse.
    Barlow said the board of the organization he runs, called the United Effort Plan (UEP) Trust, will meet on Jan. 5 in a public meeting to discuss what to do with the building, constructed in 1986, Barlow said. One possibility is converting it to a civic center, though that would likely require seeking grant funds, he said. The UEP board will make the final decision.

  55. Looks like Naomie Jessop has left the FLDS. Check out Rachel Jeffs facebook page and you will see her in one of the pictures.

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