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Warren Jeffs Restructuring FLDS from Prison: Prosecutors

Fundamentalist Church of Latter-Day Saints leader Warren Jeffs is currently orchestrating a shakeup of his crumbling sect, according to court documents filed Monday by federal prosecutors.

Fundamentalist Church of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) leader Warren Jeffs is currently orchestrating a shakeup of his crumbling sect, according to court documents filed Monday by federal prosecutors.

Free Confidential Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one has been sexually abused, molested or otherwise harmed by a member of the Mormon Church or Fundamentalist Church of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a suit and our lawyers can help.

What’s the Problem?

August 10, 2016 – Jeffs, who is serving a life sentence plus 20 years in a Texas prison for sexually assaulting underage girls he considered his wives, has ordered a complete overhaul of the FLDS leadership, feds say. The findings came in a court filing seeking to keep other church leaders in jail as they await trial in a massive food stamp fraud case.

The court documents detail the inner strife of the embattled FLDS, which is facing pressure from federal authorities as well as “apostates,” ex-church members who continue to live near the sect’s home base in the neighboring communities of Hildale, UT., and Colorado City, AZ.

The documents also indicate that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is closely monitoring the FLDS. Some of the reports filed with the prosecutors’ motion were compiled as recently as August 5.

A Phoenix jury in April ruled that the FLDS discriminated against community members who didn’t belong to the church, and that local governments acted as agents for the sect. Testimony concerning what should be done with the governments of Hildale and Colorado City and their shared police department is set to take place in October.

During testimony in the Phoenix case, federal prosecutors announced the indictment of 11 FLDS members, including Warren Jeff’s brother Lyle. They are accused of ordering sect members to turn over food stamp benefits to be redistributed as the leadership saw fit. Prosecutors allege that Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits are intended only for use by those they’re given to, and that the scheme perpetrated by the church leaders exceeds $12 million.

In June, Lyle Jeffs fled home confinement in Salt Lake City less than 2 weeks after he was released from custody pending trial on the charges. The FBI said he used olive oil to slip out of his GPS ankle monitor.

The documents indicate that Warren Jeffs has named a new bishop of Short Creek, replacing Lyle with one of his other brothers, Nephi. Jeffs has also eliminated the FLDS United Order, which was established under Lyle. The prophet has placed his followers on “restoral status,” meaning they must renew their commitment to the church. “My church order are out of order,” Jeffs wrote in a June 3 letter to the FLDS. He added that the “bishop’s assistant,” Ben Johnson, “is of no priesthood and needs go far away on repenting labor” and is banned from communicating with other sect members.

Do I Have a Mormon Abuse Lawsuit?

The Sexual Abuse Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in FLDS lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new abuse and molestation cases in all 50 states.

Free Drug Lawsuit Evaluation: Again, if you or a loved one was sexually abused, molested or otherwise harmed by a member of the Mormon Church or FLDS, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a suit and we can help.

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