A new 53 felony federal indictment against the Arizona-based polygamous fundamentalist cult and its leader Samuel Bateman has revealed puzzling new details.
The Arizona Federal Attorney’s Office currently has Bateman, a self-proclaimed prophet of the splinter group of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and 10 others sexually assault nine girls ages 9 to 17 in court. accused of adding The time the alleged crime was committed.
Federal prosecutors launched broad-based indictments on May 18, replacing more limited indictments against Bateman and three of his followers. The latest court filings, which named 11 defendants, show the broader scope of the lawsuit and the more serious allegations.
The new charges rely in part on Bateman’s own writings and statements by some of the girls, according to documents filed in Arizona federal district court. The new indictment accuses Bateman of forcing girls to have sex with him or other adults, trading nights with the girls for luxury Bentleys, and forcing children to participate in live-streamed gang sex acts. It has revealed how they coerced and transported girls across state lines for sex trafficking.
Bateman was indicted in December along with Naomi Bistrain, Donae Barlow and Moretta Johnson, all of whom Bateman claimed to be his wife.
The four were initially charged with kidnapping and destruction of evidence in a federal investigation. The US Attorney’s Office filed an affidavit of sexual coercion but did not press charges.
On May 18, Josephine Barlow Bisline, Rudelle Bisline Jr., Brenda Barlow, Marona Johnson, Torrance Bisline, Leia Bisline, and Leilani Bisline were added to the indictment. They are all relatives, followers, and people whom Bateman claimed to be his wife.
The 11 co-defendants face charges ranging from producing child pornography to transporting children for sex.
Who is Samuel Bateman?
He is 47 years old and the leader of the FLDS sect in the City of Colorado. Beyond that, there’s still a lot we don’t know about him. According to residents of the City of Colorado and Hildale, he calls himself a prophet.
What happened in Colorado, Arizona?
On August 28, Arizona Department of Public Safety officers saw a GMC Denali stop on Interstate 40. Samuel Rappery Bateman was arrested after he noticed a child’s hand sticking out of the trailer being towed. He was imprisoned in Coconino County Jail on child endangerment charges, but returned to his home.
Why would the FBI get involved?
Federal investigators have heightened suspicions that Bateman deleted records on his cell phone app during and after his arrest and kept in touch with supporters in Colorado while in prison. On September 13, investigators raided his home there. On September 15, he appeared in federal court on a new federal charge of obstructing the destruction of records.
Public Acts, Sex, and Bentleys
Last week’s indictment listed a detailed chronology of “blatant conduct” beginning in 2019 when Bateman declared himself a prophet and ending with his arrest by federal agents in the fall of 2022.
The alleged “deed” in court documents describes how Bateman made the girls his own by persuading young girls and their parents that God commanded them to marry. . According to the indictment, the girls were often told to have sex with him for the first time at the ceremony, and some admitted to being frightened.
By the time law enforcement caught him, he had claimed ten women and ten underage girls to be his God-given wives. The identities of most remain unknown.
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In court records filed last winter, federal prosecutors hinted at some of the horrifying allegations made in the new indictment. They include:
- Forced sexual intercourse.
- Transporting children for sex with other adults.
- I am about to marry one of my underage daughters.
But the new details go further than some silly stuff.
According to the latest accusations, Bateman began his pattern of manipulation in March 2020 by taking underage girls, when he took as his wife the 9-year-old daughter of a man identified only as MJ in a divine vision. claimed to have been told to
Court records report that Bateman let his nine-year-old son sleep in his bed four months later.
Prosecutors claimed Bateman committed the act at least seven times. Four more daughters (ages 10, 11, 13 and 14) were adopted from MJ. The other two children, ages 9 and 10, were taken from co-defendants Rudelle Bistoline and Josephine Bistoline. According to the new indictment, Bateman also plans to take Josephine Bistrain as his wife.
On at least two occasions, the girls claim to have described their sexual acts with Bateman. Another report claims that Bateman wrote of one of the girls, “I slept with my angel mother tonight!”
In previous complaints, Ruddell Bistoline was accused of engaging in a group sex act involving girls. The new charges allege that Bateman offered one of Vistline’s children for sex in exchange for one night with Vistline’s wife.
Prosecutors have pointed out that wealthy farm engineer Torrance Vistline bought Bateman a luxury Bentley in October 2021. Months later, according to the indictment, Bateman presented a 12-year-old girl to Torrance Vistline to observe them having sex.
Torrance Vistline would buy Bateman a second Bentley shortly after that night, prosecutors argued.
The Green House
Bateman, who is sitting in Coconino County Jail after his arrest in Flagstaff, contacted Torrance Bistoline and other followers and asked them to remove messages and documents from their digital devices, prosecutors allege. there is
According to the indictment, after Bateman was detained in early September, the 15-year-old alleged that Bateman coerced another 15-year-old into having sex and had him monitored.
When federal agents arrived on Sept. 13, some older women tried to remove or cover up evidence, the indictment alleges. One reportedly threw a backpack full of condoms and digital devices out the window.
Prosecutors have also moved to seize Bateman’s belongings if convicted. They are trying to foreclose on two houses in Colorado, Arizona, which prosecutors claim belong to Bateman. They were known as the “Blue House” and the “Green House”.
Over the past year, several girls have visited Greenhouse. Prosecutors claimed it was where Bateman ordered them to participate in a group sex act.
Bateman faces a total of 51 felony charges. These include the manufacture of child pornography, interstate travel for illegal sexual activity with minors, and transportation of minors for criminal sexual activity.
Donae Barlow, Moretta Johnson and Naomi Bistoline face four felony counts. These include kidnapping, conspiracy to kidnap, tampering with official procedure, and conspiracy to tamper with official procedure.
Josephine Barlow Bistoline faces 12 felony charges. These include the production of child pornography, the transfer of obscene material to minors, and the transport of minors for criminal sexual activity.
Rudell Bistoline faces eight felony counts. These include receiving child pornography, passing obscene materials to minors, and transporting minors for criminal sexual activity.
Brenda Barlow faces 11 felony counts. These include transferring obscene materials to minors, transporting minors for sexual offenses, conspiring to kidnap, etc.
Marona Johnson faces a felony charge of giving obscene material to a minor.
Leia Bistoline faces two felony counts for using interstate commerce to persuade or coerce a minor to engage in sexual activity.
Torrance Vistline faces five felony counts. They include using the means of interstate commerce to persuade or coerce a minor to engage in sexual activity, and four other felonies related to tampering with evidence.
Leilani Vistline may use interstate commerce to persuade or coerce minors into sexual activity, transport minors for criminal sexual activity, persuade or coerce travel to sexual activity, etc. has been charged with three felonies.
Bateman is scheduled to be arraigned in a Phoenix court on Friday.