Attorneys for Warren Jeffs want thrown out evidence that prosecutors would probably never use anyway. On Wednesday in 5th District Court in St. George, they will ask Judge James Shumate to suppress evidence arising from Jeffs’ arrest last August.
Jeffs was riding in a red Cadillac Escalade that was pulled over by a Nevada State Trooper along I-15 north of Las Vegas. In that Escalade was a wealth of laptop computers, notebooks and letters, as well as pre-paid cell phones and credit cards, cash and other stuff that would be very useful to someone on the run.
The feds may want to use some of that as evidence in their upcoming trial of Jeffs on charges that he was hiding from authorities to avoid prosecution. But thus far, prosecutors in Washington County have not indicated any interest in the stash from the Escalade.
So tomorrow’s hearing is seen as a preemptive strike by the defense team. But however the judge rules, it is likely to have little impact on the case that prosecutors will present to a jury this fall.
Jeffs is scheduled to go to trial on charges of rape as an accomplice in September.
Jeffs remains the leader of the largest polygamist group in North America. He has roughly 10,000 followers in several western states as well as Canada and perhaps even Mexico. He went into hiding in early 2005 after Mohave County, Ariz., authorities charged him with sexual conduct with a minor and conspiracy to commit sexual conduct with a minor. A year later, he was placed on the FBI’s “Ten Most Wanted” list.