Federal judge considering polygamous sect trust case

A federal judge is considering whether to block the sale of property from a polygamous sect’s communal trust based on the argument that the 2005 state takeover of the trust violated the constitutional separation of church and state.

Attorneys for 6,000 members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints are asking Benson for an injunction removing the states of Utah and Arizona from the United Effort Plan Trust and preventing the sale of Berry Knoll Farm.

An early leader in the fundamentalist Mormon movement prophesied in 1934 the land would some day be a temple site.

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