March 28, 2012 |
HOUSTON -- A West Texas jury has found a former associate of polygamist religious leader Warren Jeffs guilty of bigamy. Wendell Loy Nielsen, 71, stood trial for marrying three women in addition to his legal wife, two of whom he married on the same day in 2006. At trial this month, his attorney had argued that the sect's “celestial marriages” did not violate state bigamy laws. The jury in San Midland, about 330 miles west of Dallas, deliberated for about an hour and a half before finding Nielsen guilty Wednesday of three counts of bigamy, court clerks told The Times. Nielsen is the former president of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a Mormon offshoot sect.
July 14, 2011
The polygamous family featured on cable television's "Sister Wives" challenged the bigamy law that makes their lifestyle illegal Wednesday. Attorney Jonathan Turley filed a lawsuit challenging the Utah law in Salt Lake City's U.S. District Court. Turley represents Kody Brown and his four wives — Meri, Janelle, Christine and Robyn. Kody Brown is legally married only to Meri Brown. The Browns belong to the Apostolic United Brethren church, which practices polygamy as part of its faith.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 3, 2009 |
A man who lived in Rancho Santa Margarita and is serving a sentence for embezzlement is scheduled to be arraigned today on charges that he married two women who did not know about each other and then stole from them, authorities said Thursday. Craig Stevens, 49, was sentenced to one year and four months in state prison last October for stealing $147,000 from his Costa Mesa employer. He is accused of marrying an Illinois resident in August 2007 without his first wife's knowledge. Prosecutors say he used his first wife's property inheritance to pay the restitution he was ordered to pay in the theft case.
November 13, 2008 |
A grand jury indicted another three members of a polygamist sect that was the focus of a massive raid during the spring. The grand jury in Schleicher County has now charged 12 members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, including sect leader Warren Jeffs. Most charges involve sexual abuse and bigamy.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 11, 2008 |
A former Los Angeles County probation department clerk who fled the country earlier this year after she was charged with bigamy and insurance fraud was captured in Mexico over the weekend, authorities said Monday. Damaris Ninet Amesquita, 30, was found Saturday by a bail bonds agent in Mexicali, said Los Angeles County district attorney's spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons.
May 17, 2006 |
The state Supreme Court upheld the 2003 bigamy conviction of a former Hildale police officer, ruling that a law banning polygamy is not unconstitutional. The court said that religious protections of the U.S. and Utah constitutions "do not shield [Rodney] Holm's polygamous practices from state prosecution." Holm was convicted of felony bigamy and two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor. He had argued that the state's bigamy statute violated his right to practice his religion.