Polygamy

The U.S. Department of Labor is headed to court to press allegations that a company tied to a polygamous sect on the Utah-Arizona border changed its name and defied an order to stop using child labor.

A four-day evidence hearing begins Monday in the case against Paragon Contractors, which is accused of changing its name to Par 2 and hiring underage workers for construction jobs across the West in 2015 and 2016.

 

A self-styled prophet accused of secretly marrying young girls because of his beliefs in polygamy and doomsday pleaded guilty in Utah Wednesday to child rape and abuse charges filed after police raided the group's remote desert compound.

Samuel W. Shaffer faces at least 25 years in prison after agreeing to the Wednesday plea deal in Iron County, where prosecutors said he abused an 8-year-old girl related to a group member, the Spectrum newspaper reported.

Samuel Shaffer (left) and John Coltharp have been arrested on various charges after a raid on their compound.
tech2.org

A Utah man from an upstart group with beliefs in polygamy and doomsday has been charged with sodomy on a child and other counts.Prosecutors filed the charges Wednesday against 34-year-old Samuel Shaffer, one of two men accused of sexually abusing girls they considered wives. He was also charged with child lewdness and obstruction of justice.

hcn.org

Next month's municipal election in Hildale, Utah, could give the town its first mayor and City Council members who don't claim affiliation with a polygamous sect.

Donia Jessop is running for mayor after being nominated at an unofficial convention attended by mostly people who don't follow Warren Jeffs, leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

npr.org

A judge is awarding $16 million in a lawsuit filed by a woman married to her cousin at age 14 in a ceremony overseen by polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs.

A lawyer for Elissa Wall said Wednesday the decision lets attorneys investigate bank accounts and property connected to the secretive group based along the Utah-Arizona border.

www.splcenter.org

A polygamous community on the Arizona-Utah border is appealing an overhaul of its government operations that was ordered in response to a verdict that found nonbelievers were denied police protection, building permits and water hookups on the basis of religion.

fbi.gov

Authorities say escaped polygamous sect leader Lyle Jeffs was living out of his car when he was captured in South Dakota.

FBI Special Agent in Charge Eric Barnhart said in Salt Lake City on Thursday that a tip led to Jeffs' capture at a recreation-area marina southwest of Sioux Falls.

commons.wikimedia.org

A judge has rejected a request by the federal government to disband the shared police department in a polygamous community on the Arizona-Utah border as a punishment for a religious discrimination verdict against the sister cities.

knau.org

A company with ties to a polygamous sect on the Utah-Arizona border has agreed to pay $200,000 for pay back wages to children who picked pecans for long hours in the cold.

Ally Wall

Ally Wall spent most of her life in hiding. She was a member of the polygamist sect Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints lead by Warren Jeffs, who they consider to be a prophet of God. He’s currently serving a life sentence in a Texas prison for the sexual assault of underage girls. Ally tells her story about her life in the FLDS community, how she educated herself on the actuality of the sect she was born in, and how she ultimately made the decision to leave.