FLDS member released from jail again, told not to contact Warren Jeffs

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SALT LAKE CITY — A Fundamentalist LDS Church member arrested after being accused of violating the terms of his pre-trial release will be released from jail again.

After a hearing Wednesday in St. George, U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert Braithwaite restarted the terms of Preston Barlow’s release, which include wearing a GPS monitoring device and no travel outside Utah or Colorado City, Ariz. He had earlier been granted modified release conditions, different from other defendants in the case.

The judge allowed¬†Barlow to have contact with co-defendants, but they can’t talk about the pending criminal case itself.¬†The U.S. Attorney’s Office for Utah said the new order prohibited him from having contact with FLDS leader Warren Jeffs, who is serving life in a Texas prison for child sex assault related to underage “marriages.”

FLDS members Seth Jeffs (left), John Wayman (center) and Preston Barlow (right) in mugshots provided by the Purgatory Jail.

FLDS members Seth Jeffs (left), John Wayman (center) and Preston Barlow (right) in mugshots provided by the Purgatory Jail.

Barlow was arrested this week after federal agents said in court documents that GPS monitoring devices placed him in the same location as FLDS bishop John Wayman, who was also accused of having contact with FLDS bishop Seth Jeffs. Both Wayman and Bishop were arrested and remain jailed pending hearings in federal court next week.

They’re among 11 people charged in a massive, multi-million dollar food stamp fraud case. Federal prosecutors allege FLDS members were ordered to hand over food stamp benefits to the polygamous church. Prosecutors have claimed taxpayers were bilked out of as much as $12 million.

FLDS leader Lyle Jeffs (a brother to Seth and Warren Jeffs) remains a fugitive after he escaped home confinement. FOX 13 first reported the FBI believes he used a substance that may have been olive oil to slip out of his GPS monitoring device.