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Final defendant in FLDS food stamp fraud case surrenders

Kimball Dee Barlow, 51.
Kimball Dee Barlow, 51.
Washington County Sheriff's Office

ST. GEORGE — The 11th and final defendant accused of fraudulently diverting food stamp benefits to the Utah-based Fundamentalist LDS Church has surrendered to authorities.

Kimball Dee Barlow, 51, surrendered to police and was booked into Washington County Jail Tuesday. He will appear for a detention hearing in St. George's U.S. District Court on Wednesday.

Eleven leaders and members of the FLDS Church, which is led by the now-incarcerated Warren Jeffs, are accused of diverting food stamp proceeds from authorized beneficiaries to leaders of the church to use as they saw fit, amounting to millions of dollars in fraud, according to a two-count indictment unsealed last week.

In conjunction with the indictment and an FBI raid on FLDS communities along the Utah-Arizona border, the U.S. Attorney's Office filed a motion arguing that an elaborate system of concealment and ways to avoid detection across several countries developed by FLDS leaders make the defendants extreme flight risks should they be released from custody.

Jeffs' brother, Lyle Jeffs, 56, remains in custody awaiting a detention hearing next week. Lyle Jeffs is believed to be leading the church, under his brother's direction from prison. Another brother, 42-year-old Seth Jeffs, was ordered by a federal judge Monday to be kept in custody and transferred from South Dakota, where he was arrested, to St. George.

Detention hearings are also pending for John Clifton Wayman, 56, a former bishop of the FLDS community known as Short Creek — including Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City, Arizona — and Nephi Steed Allred, who federal prosecutors called a courier and gifted accountant for the church.


Twitter: McKenzieRomero