They were warned he would flee if released from jail, but turned him loose anyway – sure enough, he’s gone.
Less than two weeks after he was let out of jail pending his trial on charges in a multi-million food stamp fraud scheme, polygamous sect leader Lyle Jeffs has vanished over the weekend, and now the FBI are searching for him, reports Fox News.
Jeffs, 56, is accused of defrauding the government of at least $12 million worth of food stamp benefits and was arrested in February. The trial is not until October.
He is the brother of Warren Jeffs, the sect’s highest leader, who is serving a life sentence in Texas for sexual assault of young girls.
In April, U.S. District Judge Ted Stewart denied Jeff’s release from jail, agreeing with prosecutors that he couldn’t be trusted and was a flight risk. He also has a history of evading law enforcement and using aliases. Jeffs also travels with armed guards who are “willing to take extreme measures to protect him.”
However, Judge Stewart finally relented on June 9 and released Jeffs from jail, and ordered him to remain in home confinement. He was required to wear a GPS monitor, give up his passport, and remain at home except for work, doctor’s appointments and court hearings. Over the weekend, he disappeared.
Private investigator Sam Brower, said, “Why the court would ever think the guy in charge of this criminal organization would not run is beyond me. The world needs to stop thinking about them as a religious group.”
The FBI is asking for the public’s help in locating the man.
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