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Mexico Arrests Suspected US Cult Leader Over Triple Murder and Pedophilia

A US polygamist who authorities say is the leader of a cult was arrested in Mexico after three people were found dead.

Few thought the trail to finding him would end in bloodshed.

Two teenagers aged 15 and 19, as well as a 23-year-old man, were killed on 10 September.

Prosecutors say he is also a suspect in the killing of three USA citizens in the area in September. The attorney general's statement only referred to the victims as Americans by their first names - Robert W.B., Jesse L.B. and Michael B. - but also suggested they were part of Black's group. Black is a member of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, a sect that began after the main Mormon church disavowed polygamy in 1890.

"During the investigation, it was notable that the victims did not have birth certificates and that the members of the religious community who appeared to identify the dead did not claim the bodies", the state prosecutor's office told the Guardian.

He and 26 other U.S. citizens - including his four wives - were arrested at a Mennonite colony known as Manitoba, located in the municipality of Cuauhtémoc, by officials from the state Attorney General's office (FGE), the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and consular officials. Authorities also found frozen animal carcasses.

The Chihuahua State Attorney General's Office said Black was facing charges of human trafficking and possession of wildlife species.

Black has been wanted by the state of Arizona since 2003 when five charges of sexual misconduct toward minors were filed, and is believed to have fled to Mexico with several of his wives and children.

A statement from the Chihuahua State Attorney General's Office on Monday said homes were searched near Mennonite camps in that area recently.

The townspeople now mainly farm, run cattle ranches and grow pecans.



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