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  1. I think Warren Jeffs is going to help his cult to finally crack & crumble apart. Good. If nothing else, there will be a few less fundie children born into the world in 9 months time. http://www.deseretnews.com/article/7053 ... s-say.html
  2. I wonder if she had to leave behind any children. I hope not. http://news.yahoo.com/warren-jeffs-wife ... 32555.html
  3. News outlets are reporting that Warren Jeffs is in a medically induced coma after going on a hunger strike. http://abcnews.go.com/US/source-warren- ... d=14405162 Sounds like he's taking the easy way out. Instead of suffering in jail for years on end (worse than death in my opinion), he is taking his own life by way of a hunger strike.
  4. http://www.deseretnews.com/article/7001 ... etter.html I found this article in the Deseret News today. I tried to leave a comment but it got rejected because I put the word "CHOICE" in capitals and DN doesn't like capslock. Anyway, am I overreacting or is the person who wrote the article really trying to make the outrageous claim that a mom taking her toddler to a beauty pageant or an ADULT woman dating Charlie Sheen or Hugh Heffner by CHOICE is the same as a brainwashed 12-year-old being forced into a marriage to a 55-year-old?! I'd love to hear your thoughts on this article because I've been stewing over it all day! Yeah, I don't like beauty pageants either and I think little girls are oversexualized too, but there is NO WAY that it's similar to what is going on with Warren Jeffs/the FLDS!
  5. Um, the recordings of Warren Jeffs giving sex advice to his under-aged "wives" have been released. (Click at your own risk.) I remember some time ago arguing with fundies about whether or not the raid on the YFZ Ranch was a violation of religious freedom. I argued it wasn't; that making time with under-aged girls (or boys, though that doesn't really apply here), and that trading women like baseball cards aren't legitimate expressions of religious freedom. The fundies were concerned, perhaps rightly, that horrendous charges could be brought against them as cover for religious persecution. As the newly-released evidence shows, however, that wasn't the situation here.
  6. I hate to watch HLN, but he has some women and children on the show tonight. 9pm with many reruns.
  7. Jeffs' grip on polygamous church likely to remain JENNIFER DOBNER Published: Aug 10, 2011 12:08 AM SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs, to his followers a prophet who speaks directly with God, is likely to continue to lead his church from behind bars after being sentenced to life in prison on child sex assault charges. "The vast majority are just not going to leave," Atlanta-based polygamy historian and writer Ken Driggs said. "They've got family ties and marriage ties and a culture deeply rooted in their faith." Followers of Jeffs' Utah-based Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints are likely to still revere him as a prophet, despite evidence presented in the Texas case that he had sex with girls from the sect as young as 12, former church members and experts say. Jeffs, 55, was sentenced by a Texas jury Tuesday and will not be eligible for parole until he is at least 100 years old. There was no mass exodus in 2007 after Jeffs' conviction on Utah sex assault charges. Most members remained loyal. As he spent almost five years in various jails, Jeffs continued to spiritually direct the faith, counsel followers and lead Sunday services by phone. His legal grip on the church also remains strong. Last week, the Utah Department of Commerce reaffirmed Jeffs as the head of the corporations that make up the FLDS after a church bishop unsuccessfully sought to seize control. Commerce officials said William E. Jessop ultimately failed to prove he was ordained by the previous prophet to control the church. Elissa Wall, a former FLDS member and the victim in Utah's 2007 case, called Jeffs' Texas conviction and life sentence a "true miracle." Even so, she believes that followers have been so indoctrinated in the faith that most will likely remain faithful, believing that Jeffs is God's spokesman on Earth and their path to salvation. "The vast majority will stay," Wall said, but added that the sentencing could spark change. "Now we can really begin to focus on liberating these people and freeing their minds from the mental shackles that Warren Jeffs has put on them," Wall told The Associated Press. Jeffs married the then 14-year-old Wall to her 19-year-old cousin in 2001. Wall said later she had objected to the marriage and was forced into sex. She left the church in 2004 after being granted a rare divorce because she was pregnant with another man's child. Jeffs' 2007 conviction was overturned by the Utah Supreme Court last year, but his life sentence in Texas may now make retrying him moot. Wall said it is unlikely church members even know much about the Texas case and the evidence against Jeffs. He has banned television and all books except scripture. He has counseled members against reading newspapers or using the Internet. "They probably have zero contact with the outside world. I wouldn't be surprised if they don't know yet," Wall said. "And if they do know, I'm sure they are being blamed for this verdict. It's their fault ... they weren't faithful and obedient enough." Wall said many parents may believe it to be an honor, the holiest of privileges, to have their young daughters selected by Jeffs for marriage. "That religious power is ten times more powerful than anything else," Wall said. Willie Jessop, Jeffs' former spokesman, said the FLDS community remains in denial but that Jeffs' conviction could be the "beginning of a crisis." He considers himself an active FLDS member, but refused to speak anymore on Jeffs' behalf after he became aware of the Texas child sex charges. Jeffs then attempted to remove him from his home in the FLDS community of Hildale, Utah, and reassign his wives and children, but Jessop refused to leave. He said Tuesday's life sentence for Jeffs may start a process of "deep soul searching" for some church members. "I think they may get frustrated and then there's a long grieving process that you have to go through before you can come to the reconstructive state," Jessop said. "That's a long ways down from where we are today." Jeffs rose to power in 2002 following the death of his father, Rulon Jeffs, who had led the church for nearly 20 years. The faith's basic principles are rooted in polygamy, a legacy of early Mormon church teachings that held plural marriage brought exaltation in heaven. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints abandoned the practice in 1890 as a condition of Utah's statehood, however, and excommunicates members who engage in the practice. An estimated 40,000 self-described Mormon fundamentalists split from the church and have continued to practice plural marriage across the West. At roughly 10,000 members, the FLDS is the largest and arguably the most embattled of the organized fundamentalist groups. In 1944 and 1953, authorities raided the sect's twin polygamous border towns of Hildale and Colorado City, Ariz. - known then as Short Creek - jailing dozens of men and women and putting their children in foster care. The raids cemented a mistrust of government, sending church members further into their insular society. The 2008 Texas raid on the church's Yearning for Zion ranch that led to Jeffs' current conviction likely galvanized a whole new generation of followers against outsiders, experts say. There is a history of the devout - across various religions - remaining loyal to their faith even in the face of serious crimes, said Philip Jenkins, a professor of humanities at Penn State University. "It fits very well into the scholarly literature on failed messiahs," he said. "Maybe all the charges were bogus, or maybe all the things he was doing were done as some prophecy." Church dissidents say Jeffs' reign has been anything but benevolent. They say that under Jeffs, the number of underage marriages increased dramatically and families were fractured. Dozens of teen boys and men were excommunicated for alleged acts of disobedience, with their wives and children being reassigned by Jeffs to new husbands and fathers. Some former members remain bitter. "I think he's a religious pervert," Richard Holm, who was thrown out of the church in 2003, leaving behind his three wives and 17 kids, said in a previous interview with the AP. "His leadership has totally disrupted whatever was good about the church."
  8. Looks like they won't constrain him from running his empire. not sure whats up with that. Polygamist heard on tape training girls for sex PAUL J. WEBER Published: Aug 8, 2011 7:58 PM SAN ANGELO, Texas (AP) - Prosecutors seeking life in prison for convicted polygamist leader Warren Jeffs closed their case with a final barrage of graphic audiotapes, records of 24 alleged underage brides and writings that ordered followers to "fight to the death" when police eventually came for him. The same jury that convicted Jeffs last week of sexually assaulting two of his child "brides" could now hand down their punishment early as Tuesday. Even in prison, he could continue to lead the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Among the final pieces of evidence was an audiotape of Jeffs having sex and one of him telling five girls to "set aside all your inhibitions" as he gives his child brides instructions on how to please him sexually. Jeffs' attorneys rested without calling any witnesses as the sentencing phase drew to a close. Jurors will begin deliberating Tuesday following closing arguments. Jeffs, 55, is considered God's spokesman on Earth and a prophet among his 10,000 followers. He again boycotted the sentencing phase of his trial Monday, choosing to remain in another room of the courthouse. Jurors also saw a wedding photo of Jeffs intimately kissing a 16-year-old "spiritual" wife. The girl's hair was combed high in a tight bun and her body covered by the same long sleeve, prairie-style dress that have come to identify FLDS women. "Pure Innocence. Pure Obedience. Pure Heavenly Happiness!" the caption on the photo collage read. Deric Walpole, Jeffs' attorney, has indicated that his plea for leniency during closing arguments will focus on Jeffs being a product of his environment and a culture that hasn't changed for centuries. Prosecutors, however, say it was Jeffs who radically changed the FLDS culture after rising to power in 2002. Former church members have testified how Jeffs outlawed dances and banned books. Men also began marrying younger and younger girls after Jeffs succeeded his father as FLDS president, formed FLDS member Ezra Draper has testified. In a graphic 10-minute audiotape played for jurors Monday, Jeffs is heard telling the girls that what "the five of you are about to do is important." The recording ends with him asking the girls if his instructions are detailed enough. The voices of at least two girls responded, "Yes." Several jurors squirmed or wiped away tears during the sometimes-scratchy recording, which an FBI agent said was made before they all had sex together. Jeffs kept meticulous records - as jurors found out during the conviction phase of the trial. Last week, they heard a tape of what prosecutors said was Jeffs sexually assaulting the 12-year-old victim. Prosecutors also showed jurors a page taken from one of Jeffs' personal journals. "If the world knew what I was doing, they would hang me from the highest tree," Jeffs wrote in 2005. In all, investigators collected 6 terabytes of digital evidence, and carried off hundreds of boxes from the FLDS ranch in Texas in 2008. It led to nearly 400 children being temporarily swept up in what became one of the largest U.S. child custody cases in history, though all were eventually returned to their families. The raid of the Yearning for Zion Ranch, however, still led to the charges against Jeffs and several of his followers. In the personal journals shown to jurors Monday, Jeffs indicated he knew that day was likely coming. Jeffs ordered his followers "to fight to death" if police tried entering the sacred temple on the ranch. Other times, Jeffs crisscrossed the country trying to evade capture and tried changing his appearance, in ways that were in jarring contrast to the traditionally modest, conservative style of FLDS members. A picture taken in Boston shows Jeffs smiling in a novelty T-shirt that reads "One Size Fits All," with a Guinness beer baseball hat on his head. Another shows Jeffs riding a Harley-Davidson motorcycle, decked out in a leather jacket. In a letter to followers, he tells his lieutenants they will "have to hide the Porsche" if authorities come looking. Prosecutors showed records, also gathered from the ranch, that Jeffs had 78 wives. Not counting his own wives, Jeffs officiated or was a witness to 550 illegal marriages, according to state investigators. FBI agent John Broadway testified that fathers who gave their young daughters to Jeffs - their prophet - were rewarded with young brides of their own. Girls who proved reluctant to have sex with Jeffs were sent away, according to other journal excerpts. "If they wanted to not be rejected by God, then the new laws (Jeffs) was introducing was requiring them to participate in these sessions," Broadway said. The polygamist leader spent years evading arrest, eventually making the FBI's Ten Most Wanted list before his capture in 2006, prosecutors said. A state investigator testified that Jeffs visited 23 states over nearly a year while eluding authorities. Jeffs also allegedly excommunicated 60 church members he saw as a threat to his leadership, breaking up 300 families while stripping them of property and "reassigning" wives and children.
  9. I often wonder why we don't cover the FLDS here more. I assume it's because they don't have blogs or other public outlets for their kind of craziness. But what goes on in Colorado City and other FLDS strongholds isn't just garden-variety fundie nuttiness, it's downright criminal. I'm talking child abuse, kidnapping, fraud, rape and even murder. And yet there's a big ol' gap between what is known about FLDS, and what law enforcement and other agencies are willing to do about them. I found a really good article that outlines the problem - http://journals.democraticunderground.com/Cerridwen/77 Here's an excerpt from the article: Another aspect that is hardly even spoken about is the high rate of fumarase deficiency, a genetic defect that is almost exclusive to this group because of inbreeding. It's a devastating disease which at the very least renders children permanently disabled, and at the most causes very early death. Now that Warren Jeffs is convicted, I think more needs to be done about the criminal activities of the FLDS cult.
  10. Jury hears tapes of polygamist discussing sex WILL WEISSERT Published: Aug 2, 2011 8:21 PM SAN ANGELO, Texas (AP) - Prosecutors played two audio recordings Tuesday of a polygamist sect leader instructing his 14-year-old "spiritual wife" and several other young women on how to please him sexually, and thus win favor with God. Warren Jeffs, 55, is head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, which believes polygamy brings exaltation in heaven. He is accused of sexually assaulting two girls, ages 12 and 15, he took as brides in what his church calls "spiritual marriages." A forensic analyst testified Monday that Jeffs was the father of the 15-year-old's child. On Tuesday, prosecutors played a tape of Jeffs talking to the girl when she was 14, after Texas Ranger Nick Hanna testified about documents and electronic files seized during a 2008 police raid at the church's remote compound in West Texas. The Associated Press generally does not identify victims of sexual crimes. Among the materials recovered during the raid was a record of Jeffs' marriage "for time and all eternity" with the 14-year-old in January 2004. An excerpt from hundreds of pages of Jeffs' personal journals said the child was "pure and innocent and willing to obey" and that he summoned her parents and "informed them of their girl belonging to me." Followers see Jeffs as a prophet who is God's spokesman on earth. Hanna read from Jeffs' journals, which said he took the 14-year-old the night after their wedding with him and another of his new wives on a car ride for "training." There, he instructed them on their responsibilities as his wives and had the session taped. The recording was transcribed and placed in church records later seized by police. Lead prosecutor Eric Nichols played the tape for jurors, who followed along using transcripts. "A good wife is trained for her husband and follows the spirit of peace," Jeffs is heard saying. He also makes reference to "drawing close" or "being close," which is how church members refer to sex. Two female voices say "OK." In describing the session in his journal later, Jeffs said he told his wives they were "honorable vessels, property of your husband's kingdom and the Kingdom of God on Earth." Jeffs has represented himself since firing his high-powered attorneys last week. He objected half a dozen times to the tape being played, arguing that the training session was protected by religious privacy rights. State District Judge Barbara Walther overruled him. Later, Nichols played a 58-minute clip of another so-called training session from December 2004, this one involving what he described as 12 "young" ladies, including the one from the first recording. Jeffs stood up and talked over it, rambling about how a holy trust was being broken. "I am but a mortal man seeking peace," he said. "I am not a threat to anyone. My faith is my only weapon." Nichols said Jeffs was interrupting too much and shouldn't be allowed to represent himself. Walther let Jeffs continue. "Mr. Jeffs, I do not want you to be removed from this courtroom," the judge said. "But you are jeopardizing your right to represent yourself with your continued behavior." Jeffs has asked three times for Walther's removal from the case, but his latest request was turned down by a regional administrative judge Tuesday. As the tape continued to play, Jeffs again repeatedly objected. But the judge, jury and prosecutors were wearing headphones to hear the recording, and ignored him. He remained standing long after falling silent. On the recording, Jeffs was heard saying, "you have to know how to excite sexually and be excited. You have to be able to assist each other." At another point, quoting God, he says, "Each one who touches me and assists each other will have my holy gift." Jeffs also was heard telling the girls to shower and wear white robes when they come to him, and gave them instructions on shaving their pubic hair. At the end, he softly sings the "Father, Son and Holy Ghost" refrain. Prosecutors have promised to play still another recording - this one of Jeffs having sex with the 12 year old girl - before resting their case. Before playing the other recordings, Hanna read excerpts of Jeffs' journal where he described the Lord ordering him to visit Eldorado, Texas, about 45 miles south of San Angelo, and the church purchasing 1,700 acres of land outside the town for $1.2 million in 2003. "This will only be a place of refuge if it is kept sacred and secret," Jeffs wrote, adding that his followers should populate the area and let "a community grow here more in hiding before the neighbors find out." He told the faithful they could build anything they wanted, thanks to Texas' lax zoning laws, and construction teams working around-the-clock erected more than a dozen buildings, including a sprawling, white-limestone temple. Texas authorities raided the compound in April 2008 after receiving a call to an abuse hotline that turned out to be a hoax. More than 400 FLDS children who were placed in protective custody were eventually returned to their families. But police saw underage girls who were clearly pregnant and found Jeffs' journals and the other documents in a vault at the end of a secret passageway in the temple. Another vault in an annex building provided still more records and files. Jeffs and 11 other FLDS men were charged with crimes including sexual assault and bigamy. So far, all seven who have been prosecuted have been convicted - receiving prison sentences of between six and 75 years.
  11. And he is guilty of child sexual assault. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44021900/ns ... ?GT1=43001
  12. The fool is so full of himself that he thinks go will be his lawyer. I wonder how his case will go without him there to defend himself? The guy deserves to get raped for the rest of his worthless life. He will be on the other end of the spectrum in jail and know what his wives went through. Jeffs threatens court with Biblical repercussions WILL WEISSERT Published: Jul 29, 2011 3:49 PM SAN ANGELO, Texas (AP) - A polygamist sect leader defending himself against sexual assault charges broke his silence Friday with a 55-minute sermon defending plural marriages as divine and later said God would visit "sickness and death" on those involved if his trial wasn't immediately stopped. Warren Jeffs, 55, could face life in prison if he's convicted of sexually assaulting two underage girls. He has been representing himself since he fired his high-powered lawyers Thursday, but he made no opening statement and spent hours sitting alone at the defense table staring into space in silence while prosecutors made their case. On Friday, however, the ecclesiastical head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints suddenly cried "I object!" as FBI agent John Broadway testified about seizing eight desktop computers and 120 boxes and large folders of documents from the church's remote compound in West Texas in 2008. "There is sacred trust given to religious leadership not to be touched by government agencies," said Jeffs, who leads an offshoot of mainstream Mormonism that believes polygamy brings exaltation in heaven. The sect's 10,000 members see Jeffs as a prophet who speaks for God on Earth. Jeffs then launched into a lengthy defense of polygamy, but Walther eventually overruled his objection. She said court rules prohibited him from testifying while objecting but she let him go on at length because he hadn't offered an opening statement. Jeffs then said he had no choice but to read a statement from God. Walther dismissed the jury and allowed him to read it. "I, the Lord God of heaven," Jeffs read, "call upon the court to cease this open prosecution against my pure, holy way." If the trial continues, the statement said, "I will send a scourge upon the counties of prosecutorial zeal to make humbled by sickness and death." Jeffs has frequently said the charges against him are the work of over-zealous prosecutors. Walther responded to the statement by telling Jeffs he could not threaten the jury. "If you call for their destruction," she said, "or in any way say that they will be injured or damaged because of their service, you will be removed from the courtroom." During afternoon testimony from Broadway and other witnesses who detailed documents seized from the FLDS compound, Jeffs objected so much that Walther eventually had a bailiff remove his microphones. It was a sharp contrast to his earlier silence and halting speech. When answering questions from Walther earlier in the week, Jeffs usually paused for a full minute or two and then spoke in slow, deliberate tones interrupted by long, awkward pauses. But his words flowed freely Friday. Jeffs, who is schedule for trial on bigamy charges in October, said his church has practiced polygamy for five generations and believes it is the will of God, who is a higher power than courts, state legislatures and the U.S. Congress. "We are not a fly-by-night religious society . . . We are a community of faith and principles and those principles are so sacred. They belong to God, not to man and the governments of man," Jeffs said. He also noted that polygamy "is not of a sudden happening, it is of a tradition in our lives. And how can we just throw it away and say 'God has not spoken?'" Jeffs said FLDS members believe adhering to God's will, as stated by prophets like himself, is the only way to achieve eternal life in "Zion," or heaven. "We do not seek your salvation," Jeffs told Walther and jurors, who watched and listened intently but made no visible reaction to his words. The judge turned down his repeated pleas for a separate hearing on freedom of religion. Jeffs said Texas authorities had unfairly persecuted the FLDS just because its members are different from those of mainstream religions. Women in the sect wear prairie-style dresses and keep their hair tied up in tight buns that conjure images of frontier times. "We are derided for how we dress, how we go about our laborers in a common society," he said. "The government of the United States had no right to infringe on the religious freedom of a peaceful people." Jeffs said the courts and society are "not understanding our religious faith, yet judging it." At the end of his speech, lead prosecutor Eric Nichols rose and said the Supreme Court ruled in the 1890s that religious freedom does not extend to polygamy. The FLDS made headlines nationwide in 2008, when authorities raided its compound in tiny Eldorado, about 45 miles from San Angelo, after hearing allegations that young girls were being forced into polygamist marriages. More than 400 children were seized temporarily but eventually returned to their families. Still, Jeffs and 11 other FLDS men were charged with crimes including sexual assault and bigamy. All seven sect members prosecuted so far have been convicted and given prison terms of between six and 75 years.
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