Stories 1 - 20 |  Next >>

Polygamous Leader Had 'Wives' as Young as 9: FBI
Polygamous Leader Had
'Wives' as Young as 9: FBI
the rundown

Polygamous Leader Had 'Wives' as Young as 9: FBI

Samuel Bateman, 46, was arrested over the summer

(Newser) - The leader of a polygamous sect near the Arizona-Utah border had more than 20 "wives," including children, according to an FBI affidavit filed Friday in federal court. Samuel Rappylee Bateman, a 46-year-old self-described "prophet" and former leader of a branch of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ...

Patriarch of 'World's Largest Family' Dies

Indian man Ziona Chana reportedly had 38 wives, 94 children

(Newser) - The patriarch of what is believed to be the world's biggest family has died, leaving 38 grieving widows behind. Polygamy is officially illegal in India, but Mizoram state in the country's northeast allows exceptions for some groups, including the Christian sect founded by Ziona Chana's grandfather in...

Polygamy Effectively Decriminalized in Utah

As of Tuesday, it's no longer a felony

(Newser) - Polygamy is now effectively decriminalized in Utah. Lawmakers passed the bill reducing bigamy from a felony to a minor infraction in February, the governor signed it in March, and it took effect Tuesday. While bigamy had been a third-degree felony for decades in the state, the attorney general's office...

Utah Senate Votes 29-0 to Decriminalize Polygamy

Bill makes maximum penalty a $750 fine

(Newser) - Should polygamy be a felony, or a matter between man and wives? Lawmakers in Utah's Republican-controlled Senate leaned toward the latter on Tuesday and voted unanimously to decriminalize polygamy. Under current Utah law, a person who "purports to marry and cohabitates with" more than one spouse is guilty...

Warren Jeffs' Son, Who Said Dad Abused Him, Dead at 26

Roy Jeffs is said to have taken his own life

(Newser) - A son of Warren Jeffs who was one of the first to say the polygamist had sexually abused his own children has died. The Salt Lake City Tribune reports that Roy Jeffs, 26, was found dead at his Salt Lake City home on Friday. He would have turned 27 on...

Why All Eyes Are On Elections in a Remote Utah Town

Polygamist FLDS group seems to be losing long-held grasp on the town—including local politics

(Newser) - In a place where political contests are virtually unknown, campaign signs offer the latest hint that a polygamous group is losing its grip on a remote community on the Utah-Arizona border. "For Hildale mayor vote Donia," reads a sign featuring Donia Jessop, a candidate pictured with a contemporary...

Polygamous Leader Found Guilty of Having 25 Wives

Another former leader of the community found guilty of having 5 wives

(Newser) - Two former leaders of an isolated polygamous community in Canada were convicted Monday of practicing polygamy after a decades-long legal fight, setting up another potential court battle over the constitutionality of Canada's polygamy laws. Winston Blackmore, 60, and James Oler, 53, were found guilty by British Columbia Supreme Court...

Year After Slippery Escape, Warren Jeffs' Brother Is Caught

FBI says he'll face trial for fraud, money laundering

(Newser) - Lyle Jeffs literally slipped from the FBI's grasp last summer, so the agency will likely hold on a little tighter now that he's back in custody after a year on the run. Jeffs, the 57-year-old brother of polygamist Warren Jeffs and a leader of the Fundamentalist Church of...

Polygamy Still Illegal in Utah
Polygamy Still Illegal in Utah

Polygamy Still Illegal in Utah

US Supreme Court declines to hear arguments from 'Sister Wives' family

(Newser) - Polygamy is still illegal in Utah, as the US Supreme Court has declined to hear arguments against the lower court ruling that kept it so. Kody Brown and his four wives—the stars of TLC's Sister Wives—have for years been seeking to remove the penalties for polygamy in...

Utah's Polygamy Ban Is Back
 Utah's Polygamy Ban Is Back 

Utah's Polygamy Ban Is Back

Court reinstates law in Sister Wives case

(Newser) - A federal appeals court has ruled against four women and their husband in a move that means Utah once again has the toughest anti-polygamy law in the nation. The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a 2013 ruling that effectively decriminalized polygamy by removing penalties for married people cohabiting with...

Polygamous Towns Found Guilty of Discrimination

Cops treated nonbelievers unfairly, jury finds

(Newser) - Two polygamous towns on the Utah-Arizona border violated the constitutional rights of nonbelievers by denying them basic services such as police protection, building permits, and water hookups, a jury said Monday. The civil rights trial marks one of the boldest efforts by the government to confront what critics have long...

Warren Jeffs' Son Opens Up About Sect Life

He says he was harshly punished for confessing thoughts

(Newser) - A son of jailed polygamous leader Warren Jeffs says he was manipulated, shuffled around the country, and assigned to work crews to atone for his perceived transgressions before leaving the sect last year. The comments by Roy Jeffs, now 23, provide a window into the secretive sect based on the...

Warren Jeffs' Kids Say He Molested Them

New accusations against the polygamous Mormon sect leader

(Newser) - Two adult children of imprisoned, polygamous Mormon sect leader Warren Jeffs tell CNN Jeffs sexually abused them as children. Becky and Roy Jeffs recently left the 10,000-member Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints; two of Jeffs' other children have done the same. Becky Jeffs tells CNN...

Sister Wives Stars Use Gay Ruling in Polygamy Case

Hope to use legalized same-sex marriage to protect plural marriages

(Newser) - The stars of the reality TV show Sister Wives are attempting to use the landmark Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage to protect the polygamous relationships of themselves and others. Kody Brown and his four wives say laws against consensual adult relationships are outdated, even if those relationships are unpopular....

Here's a Better Way to Define Marriage, Civil Union

Essay: Government should get out of the romance department

(Newser) - It didn't take long after the Supreme Court's decision in favor of gay marriage for the next potential legal challenge to surface: Should polygamists be allowed to marry? The debate over what "marriage" means will begin anew, but Froma Harrop thinks there's a more fundamental question...

Polygamous Trio May Sue for Right to Marry

Montana man applies for license, inspired by gay marriage case

(Newser) - A Montana man inspired by last week's Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage has applied for a marriage license so that he can legally wed his second wife. Nathan Collier and his wives Victoria and Christine applied at the Yellowstone County Courthouse in Billings yesterday in an attempt to...

Mormon Church Admits Founder Had Up to 40 Wives

Joseph Smith took his additional wives reluctantly, per a church essay

(Newser) - The Mormon church's big revelations didn't stop with its sacred undergarments : In an online essay titled "Plural Marriage in Kirtland and Nauvoo," the church for the first time declares that founder Joseph Smith was a polygamist, with a footnote stating that "careful estimates" put his...

Ninja Sister-Wives Busted in Crazy Home Invasion

They were ultimately defeated by guy with a Samurai sword, natch

(Newser) - "I went to the bottom of the stairs and saw a couple of ninjas coming down." So begins the crazy tale out of Utah from Thursday night. As the Salt Lake Tribune tells it, two women—variously described as either sister wives or in a polygamous relationship with...

Texas Seizes Warren Jeffs' Infamous Ranch

Nearly 6 years after FBI agents raided the property

(Newser) - The secluded Texas ranch where followers of imprisoned polygamist Warren Jeffs lived in near isolation was seized by state agents yesterday, nearly six years after FBI agents raided the property and removed 439 children amid child sex abuse allegations. (All of the children were eventually returned. But about a dozen...

Let's Legalize Polygamy
 Let's Legalize Polygamy 

Let's Legalize Polygamy

It's the best way to cut down on its abuses, Mark Goldfeder argues

(Newser) - The stars of Sister Wives essentially won decriminalization for polygamy in Utah last week—even as TLC released another reality show, Breaking the Faith, that focused on the dark side of the practice. "Whether or not a white-washed, clean-cut version of plural marriage could in theory legally exist, in...

Stories 1 - 20 |  Next >>