Lyle Jeffs Sentenced For Role In Food Stamp Fraud

By Sarah Ventre
Published: Wednesday, December 13, 2017 - 3:05pm
Updated: Thursday, December 14, 2017 - 8:50am
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Lyle Jeffs, brother of imprisoned polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs, was sentenced Wednesday to almost five years in prison for his role in a food stamp fraud scheme, and for escaping confinement.

Lyle Jeffs was a bishop in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and was convicted of running a scheme to divert around $11 million in food-stamp benefits to a communal storehouse and front companies.

Jeffs' attorney said his actions were part of the FLDS religious beliefs in communal living, but many in the community allege the food was not distributed equitably.

Jeffs was a fugitive for about a year after he slipped off an ankle monitoring device while on supervised release. In addition to his prison sentence, Jeffs is ordered to pay $1 million in restitution.

Last year a federal court found the towns of Colorado City, Arizona, and Hildale, Utah, guilty of religious discrimination, for acting as arms of the FLDS church. To learn more about the community, visit kjzz.org/shortcreek.

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