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2 arrested in missing girls found near makeshift compound

His two sons, 6-year-old Seth and 7-year-old William, were found safe after a raid on the compound Monday, but the girls could not be located, prompting the Amber Alert, KSL reports.

Their mother, Micha Coltharp, said the two girls and their two brothers disappeared on September 13. Samuel Warren Shaffer, 34, who calls himself the prophet of a polygamous sect named "Knights of the Crystal Blade", was subsequently arrested. Coltharp was also charged earlier this week for kidnapping and obstruction of justice.

His brother, Benjamin Shaffer, said his family has been traumatized by the revelations.

The suspect, Samuel Shaffer, was taken into custody.

Evangelist Billy Graham has warned that while some cults are blatantly anti-Christian, others are far more unsafe, as they closely resemble a church and claim to promote the teachings of Jesus Christ while actually denying some of the Bible's' most important teachings.

He and Shaffer met online and grew close, eventually forming the Knights of The Crystal Blade as fraternal order, Lee said. They considered themselves separated but still lived together when he quit his job and moved with the children to his parents' home in May, Lee said. Their mother believed that they were kidnapped by their estranged father, John Coltharp, after he lost custody of the children.

Micha Coltharp started the process of getting a divorce and sole custody of the children, but as weeks passed there remained few clues about exactly where the children were. Family members also told the Denver Post they believe Coltharp had given his daughters to Shaffer for marriage.

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Then, on December 1, her ex-husband turned up at his parents' home.

Utah law enforcement followed a tip from Soble's court documents that stated that her four biological children may be located near Beryl junction about 30 miles west of Cedar City. Shaffer was with him, but police didn't have anything to charge him with and let him go.

Two Utah girls have been found safely three months after they were kidnapped by their father, a cult member who betrothed the little girls to the leader of the sect, a self-identified "prophet".

A Utah man believed to be the head of a new religious sect allegedly hid two young girls in 50-gallon barrels for almost 24 hours in freezing temperatures and kept another two in an abandoned mobile home, authorities said. "All four girls were found without food or water and appeared to not have that for a period of time", Schlosser said. Two hours later, police received a tip about a man walking alone matching Shaffer's description.

Shaffer initially refused to disclose the location of his other child and the fourth missing child, a statement from the Sheriff's Office said, but, after an hour, he provided the location of an abandoned single-wide mobile home.

The girls were transferred to a local hospital for medical evaluations. Her condition was not immediately available.



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