Court hears case of Jeff’s polygamy church’s land
SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah judge has scheduled a hearing to consider whether to allow the sale of a 438-acre parcel of land where a southern Utah-based polygamous church headed by jailed leader Warren Jeffs had planned to build a temple.
The land is part of the United Effort Plan Trust, a communal land trust tied to the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The trust has been under court control since 2005 following allegations that Jeffs mismanaged it.
A court-appointed accountant wants to sell the northern Arizona land to pay off debt. A hearing is set for Wednesday in 3rd District Court in Salt Lake City.
Church members oppose the sale. A stay of the sale was lifted last week when a judge rejected a settlement proposal that would have returned the majority of trust assets to the church.
Jeffs has been in jail since 2007 after he was convicted rape as an accomplice in for his role in the 2001 marriage of an underage follower to her cousin. He’s also awaiting two criminal trials on charges related to underage marriage.