Settlement reached over FLDS towns’ discrimination

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SALT LAKE CITY — A financial settlement has apparently been reached between the federal government and the border towns of Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City, Ariz., accused of discriminating against non-members of Warren Jeffs’ polygamous church.

In a settlement agreement filed in a federal court in Phoenix and obtained by FOX 13, the U.S. Justice Department announced that the defendants had agreed to pay $55,000 each to the federal government to settle claims of violation of the Fair Housing Act. In addition, the towns would pay about $1.4 million to nine individuals who were found to have been discriminated against.

Both sides would pay their own attorney’s fees, the agreement said.

The U.S. Justice Department sued Hildale and Colorado City, accusing the town governments of discriminating against people who weren’t members of the Fundamentalist LDS Church and acting as agents for polygamous sect leaders. After a trial that lasted weeks, a jury ruled in favor of the federal government.

The settlement agreement does not include any other penalties, which are expected to be decided at an October hearing in Phoenix.

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