Utah Governor Gary Herbert signed an extradition warrant for FLDS prophet Warren Jeffs early Tuesday evening, effectively paving the way for Jeffs to be brought to Texas where he faces charges of Sexual Assault of a Child, Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Child and Bigamy.
Jeffs attorneys have promised to fight his extradition to the Lone Star State. That prospect became more difficult last month when the Utah Supreme Court overturned Jeffs 2007 conviction on two counts of Rape as an Accomplice. The high court ruled that trial judge James Shumate erred when instructing the jury prior to their deliberations, thereby preventing Jeffs from receiving a fair trial.
Now, with no more charges pending against Jeffs in Utah, his hopes of avoiding trial in Texas seem to hinge on his attorneys being able to prove that he is not the same Warren Steed Jeffs indicted by a Schleicher County grand jury in 2008.
Perry’s extradition request, complete with Jeffs’ photo, finger prints and an affidavit from Attorney General’s Office Investigator Wes Hensley, argue that Jeffs is indeed the man that Texas is seeking. Hensley’s affidavit states that he believes Jeffs to be the man wanted in Texas. Hensley refers to Jeffs finger prints, a photo included with the extradition request, as well as the three grand jury indictments against Jeffs.