A polygamous leader accused of kidnapping underage girls “brazenly” used the jailhouse phone system to have “explicit sexual conversations” with children, a federal filing states.
While in custody last November on suspicion of sex trafficking, Samuel Rappylee Bateman referred to a 13-year-old girl as his “sexy darling” during a video call that included his adult wives, the US Attorney in Arizona alleged in documents filed on March 3.
Bateman, 46, also asked the young teen, identified as Jane Doe 4, about “all the sacred times” they shared together, in addition to more explicit sexual remarks.
The accused child trafficker also reportedly made similarly vulgar remarks during the same call to two 16-year-olds known as Jane Doe 10 and Jane Doe 11, the document claims.
At the time of the phone call, Bateman was barred from contacting Jane Doe 4, who is a named victim in the ongoing child abuse case against him.
The religious leader is a self-proclaimed prophet of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), an offshoot of Mormonism that practices polygamy.
After he was arrested last year, an FBI affidavit reported that the majority of his 20 wives were under 15 years old.
Meanwhile, on the same day as the alleged illicit jailhouse conversations, Bateman also ordered his wives to send intimidating messages to a government witness from outside the community,” the feds said.
“Tell her that she picked the wrong religion to hate. K?” Bateman reportedly instructed the women.
A few days later, the government counsel successfully petitioned to curtail Bateman’s communication with everyone, excluding his lawyers.
As of this week, those restrictions remain in place.
Bateman, of Colorado City, was arrested in Aug. 2022 when authorities found three underage girls locked inside a trailer he was towing near Flagstaff.
A raid of his two properties then unearthed evidence of incest, group sexual activity involving both adults and minors, and child sex trafficking.
Several of Bateman’s underage “wives” were subsequently taken into custody by the Arizona Department of Child Services (DCS).
By early December, three of his adult wives were charged with kidnapping after they absconded with eight of the children to an AirBnB in Washington state.
Bateman has pleaded not guilty to federal kidnapping and evidence tampering charges.
He is being held without bond while awaiting trial on all counts, which is set to begin in March 2024.
The case against Bateman is part of an ongoing federal crackdown on the FLDA strongholds in Colorado City and nearby Hildale, Utah.
Bateman was previously a follower of Warren Jeffs, the infamous, self-appointed prophet currently serving life in prison for child sex abuse.
“It’s not right, but [Warren Jeffs] was marrying 12-year-olds and I was told that [these women] were my mom, and they weren’t even that much older than me,” Jeffs’ son, Wendell Jeffson, said of underage marriage on the FLDS compound.
The post Polygamous leader used jailhouse phone to have ‘sexual’ conversations with kids: Feds appeared first on New York Post.