Some followers of polygamist leader Warren S. Jeffs have left their homes in Utah and Arizona.
Ten homes have been abandoned in Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City, Arizona, which is the hub of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS), the largest polygamist group in North America.
The homes vacated are part of an FLDS trust called United Effort Plan (UEP), which is now run by court-appointed fiduciary Bruce R. Wisan.
Wisan received letters from the former residents explaining that they decided their homes should be "turned over to the UEF." All the residents were related to Jeffs according to a reliable source.
A former FLDS member told the Salt Lake Tribune, "Something is up...We've had to fight so hard to get homes back."
It appears the FLDS is disintegrating and a source said that the polygamist church might not have enough members left in Utah and Arizona to "act as placeholders for these houses."
A 2000 a census reported 700 housing units in the FLDS towns with only 24 vacant.
Some of the abandoned homes were large. One vacant house has 13 bedrooms and ten bathrooms to accommodate a typically large polygamist family.
The UEP may have to pay property taxes on the homes for 2006.
Some speculate that Jeffs are moving to remaining FLDS strongholds located in Nevada, Texas, Colorado, South Dakota or British Columbia.
Warren S. Jeffs remains in jail charged as an accomplice to rape.
Note: This report is a based upon a Salt Lake Tribune article titled "Abandoned FLDS houses may signal exodus" by Brooke Adams published December 12, 2006