This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2015, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

With update below

After Texas authorities raided the Yearning For Zion ranch in 2008, the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints became a lot friendlier.

Or at least for a while. The church and its followers allowed reporters onto the ranch, set up a media telephone line and defended themselves against allegations that followers were having sex with children.

This is when most people were introduced to Willie Jessop, a very large man with a reputation of being the enforcer and bodyguard for FLDS President Warren Jeffs.

Jessop acted as a spokesman for the FLDS. And one of the big interviews and ranch tours he gave was to Oprah Winfrey.

Winfrey catches up with Jessop in an episode of "Where Are They Now," to air Sunday on the OWN network.

Jessop parted with Jeffs just before Jeffs' trial in 2011. He since has started cooperating with federal and Utah authorities, so much so that the United Effort Plan, the polygamous trust operated by the state of Utah, agreed to sell him land at a reduced price.

He also took possession of Jeffs' compound in Hildale and turned it into a bed and breakfast.

Jessop still has his detractors — notably detective Sam Brower. Brower believes Jessop has used his influence to reap rewards for himself much like he did when he was Jeffs' confidant.

Jessop, presumably, will discuss why he changed his allegiances with Winfrey.

UPDATE: The online community Feminist Mormon Housewives has started a call to action. They want people to oppose Winfrey's plan to air her interview with Jessop.

The group is asking people to tweet their blog post on the topic and the hashtags #DontHostCriminals, #WillietheThug, and #StopWillieJessop.

"Jessop's crimes are long and sordid," the blog post reads, "and include arranging underage marriages, violence and intimidation, and allegations of human trafficking. He is currently trying to disrupt legal proceedings of some of the victims of Warren Jeffs and is involved in re-victimizing men and women who have escaped the FLDS. He is also capitalizing on the place where Warren abused women by turning Warren's old home into a Bed and Breakfast vacation spot."

The legal proceedings of some of the victims appears to be a reference to Jessop's changing roles in Elissa Wall's lawsuit against the United Effort Plan.

UPDATE TO THE UPDATE: Feminist Mormon Housewives revised their description of Jessop in their blog post. It clarifies that Jeffs never lived in the compound.

"He is also capitalizing on the place where Warren had plans to abuse women by turning Warren's old home into a Bed and Breakfast vacation spot."

Twitter: @natecarlisle

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