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Judge to hear sect property distribution arguments

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -

A 3rd District Judge has given initial approval for the eventual creation of a board of trustees to take over homes and property belonging to a polygamous sect led by Warren Jeffs on the Utah-Arizona border.

Judge Denise Lindberg approved the plan during a hearing Tuesday morning in Salt Lake City. Her approval is not a final decision, but rather permission to explore this option.

Any action is pending the Utah legislature paying $5.7 million it owes in professional fees to a trust created in 2005 to handle the properties.

The plan was agreed upon by the Utah and Arizona attorney general's office, and court-appointed manager of the trust.

Jeffs is serving a life sentence in Texas for sexually assaulting two underage girls he considered his brides.

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