May 28, 2005

Court seizes $100 mil in polygamist sect's funds

The Arizona Republic

Robert Anglen
The Arizona Republic
May. 28, 2005 12:00 AM

Land, housing and assets belonging to the nation's largest polygamous community and estimated to be worth more than $100 million were temporarily frozen Friday by a Utah court.

The ruling effectively wrests financial power of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from self-proclaimed prophet Warren Jeffs, who for years has controlled the school district, municipal government and most of the property in the isolated towns of Colorado City, Ariz., and Hildale, Utah.

Judge Robert Adkins temporarily froze a trust fund for the church and suspended Jeffs and five other trustees, saying he found sufficient evidence that they committed a breach of faith by selling property to church insiders for less than market value. advertisement ...

"For the past two years, I've worked with the Utah attorney general on a coordinated effort to investigate all credible allegations of child abuse, sexual exploitation, welfare fraud, tax evasion and other financial wrongdoing. The events of this week show we are making good progress."

Posted by kshaw at May 28, 2005 08:54 AM