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Legal problems mount for FLDS sect leader as undisclosed child abuse case comes to light

Three girls embrace before they are removed from the home of Samuel Bateman, following his arrest in Colorado City, Ariz., on Sept. 13.

Three girls embrace before they are removed from the home of Samuel Bateman, following his arrest in Colorado City, Ariz., on Sept. 13. (Trent Nelson, Associated Press)


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ST. GEORGE — Legal problems continue to mount for the leader of a sect of the polygamous Fundamentalist Latter Day Saints based in Colorado City, Arizona, after he allegedly failed to report a felony child abuse case filed in Coconino County Superior Court in Arizona.

Samuel Rappylee Bateman, 46, of Colorado City, has remained in jail since his arrest following an FBI raid in Colorado City in September.

The incident that set the federal case in motion came in the form of a traffic stop on Aug. 28, along a highway in Flagstaff, Arizona, where several young girls were found in an enclosed trailer. An FBI raid turned up additional evidence, prosecutors said, and Bateman was charged with obstruction of justice in federal court, while an Arizona child welfare agency removed nine children from the homes, who were later placed in protective custody, AZ Central says.

Bateman pleaded not guilty in U.S. Magistrate Court in Flagstaff on the federal case, while three second-degree felony charges were filed in Coconino Superior Court against Bateman, according to court documents.

Read the full article at St. George News.

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