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If Texas takes Warren Jeffs' ranch, then what?

Published November 28, 2012 6:10 pm
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Big news today: The state of Texas wants to seize ownership of the YFZ Ranch, once controlled by Warren Jeffs. Read our story on the search and seizure warrant served Tuesday here, and take a look at the full affidavit, which is attached to the story.

There are still a number of unanswered questions with the seizure that I'll be taking a look at over the coming days, including:

• What does Texas have to prove to win ownership of the trust? Do they have to show that everyone who bought/worked on the ranch knew Jeffs and others were sexually assaulting underage girls?

• Over the last five months or so, just about everyone has cleared out of the ranch, apparently to smaller FLDS outposts and houses of hiding around the country. How does that change the dynamic? Does it make it more difficult to investigate potential ongoing problems?

• The ranch is valued at nearly $20 million now, which is probably even a bit of a lowball figure. How will that affect the local tax base after the ranch is seized by the state?

• What the heck is the state of Texas going to do with a 1,600-acre ranch, complete with an enormous limestone temple and open-air auditorium, in the middle of nowhere?

• Are we going to see additional criminal charges come down on the money end of things?

What did you think? What questions do you want answered on the YFZ Ranch seizure?

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