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Grand Marais reacts to polygamist group leader buying North Shore property

GRAND MARAIS, MN – There’s growing unrest in Grand Marais as people learn that a known polygamist with ties to a religious group that promotes marriages involving children is a key player in a land purchase near the North Shore town.

Seth Jeffs was recently served with a lawsuit in Bloomington, Minnesota, after allegations surfaced that he was a witness and participant in the sexual abuse of a young girl while in Utah.

Records show that Seth Jeffs is listed as the managing member for a company that purchased 40 acres of land in this remote area west of Grand Marais… near the Superior National Forest.

Our KBJR 6 crew on scene observed little action on the property Friday, noting a private property sign and a bobcat parked down the long winding driveway.

Alan Mortensen, the lawyer representing the victim in the Utah case, says he believes Jeffs has relocated to Minnesota in an attempt to escape his past in Utah, where he was considered the quote “Priesthood Leader.”

Seth’s brother, Warren Jeffs, is currently serving a life sentence after he was convicted of sexual assault of two young girls ages 12 and 15 who he took as wives.

Mortensen says he’s been tracking Seth since the lawsuit was filed in 2017.

As far as the property goes, a Cook County spokesperson told KBJR 6 Friday plans have been filed to put a nearly 6,000 square foot building on the land with a nearly 1,000 foot driveway.

The plans have neighbors concerned.

“I’ve never met the guy, but if these things are true, it’s disturbing,” a Grand Marais resident who wished not to be named said. “It’s just something that sits in the back of your mind that’s kind of going to haunt you, if you have people moving up here that have a history of bad things.”

The man we spoke with today isn’t alone in his concern. The general consensus from many that our KBJR 6 crew spoke with off camera Friday is that some type of religious compound would be built on the property.

Attorneys representing the alleged victim say now that Seth has been located, they hope the pending legal action against him prevents any development of this land.

Attempts to reach Seth at the Grand Marais property Friday were unsuccessful.

Reporter Anthony Matt

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