Comments about ‘Jury finds Jeffs guilty’

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Published: Tuesday, Sept. 25 2007 11:47 p.m. MDT

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Tim

This article has moved me like no other.

Curious

Why can't they charge Jeffs with polygamy since that is what this is all about? Also, if the 19 year old cousin did rape his 14 year old cousin, why isn't he being charged for rape?

Dear Curious

Because they're not legal marriages, just a bunch of people living together. They're "spiritual marriages". It's when the men become sexual predators on the young women, that illegalities are incurred.

GUILTY GUILTY!

Curious-er

Why does it take a complaint from within to actually get the authorities to finally take some action?

Motley

He should be locked up forever as well as all the men that have taken child brides under the belief of polygamy!!!!!

ma`at

Our justice system has a pulse after all . . .

Doug Barber

I have several questions about this case. One: Why does this man face life in prison when, in Utah, many a murderer serves 15 years and goes free? Two: Why are the young woman's mother and father not charged?

I fully understand that a charismatic leader can take advantage of underage people who should not be expected to have developed fully formed powers of reason, and a fully formed conscience.

I do not understand why the alleged victim's parents are not having their feet held to the fire, if indeed this is a case that should have been brought in the first place.

Freedom of religion means nothing if it is limited to "freedom to practice those religions likely to win the approval the approval of a jury."

Kate

Thank heavens. It's about time this man is put behind bars.

Interesting

I think the defense attorney has a good point. Is this about sex or religion? Since the prosecutors followed the sex rout why is the ex-husband not charged and on the stand for Martial rape, and the mother and other family members on the stand for the same charge as Jeffs. I do not condone what Jeffs did and in no way agree with his religious views, I just question the way the prosecutors are trying to reach "justice". Is this just an example case? Or is it about the deepest pockets?(to help the civil case referenced).

That being said, I'm glad a young girl received relief for what she has suffered.

Anonymous

Dear Curious:
From what I understand technically they are not performing legal marriages between multiple women and one man. They call it a "spiritual" marriage but don't get the marriage license and all of that, so it is really difficult to prosecute them for polygamy because by law it is just one man sleeping with several women and having lots of kids.

About the 19 year old, he wasn't a big enough fish to fry. He was a tool in the case and in the hands of Jeffs. I'm sure the prosecutors saw that he himself would not have initiated the marriage without Jeff's insistence.

Why not the Cousin?

In my opinion he likely will now be charged. If you read the jury instructions they had to find that the cousin did in fact rape her. This does not equate to a conviction of him. He can't serve time based on this court's finding. They can now charge him, and also in my opinion, they will offer him a plea bargain. I would imagine that they can use every word he said in the court here against him. If it is found he was not telling the truth in this court I am sure they could hold perjury chargers over his head. Great job Washington County. You knew what you were doing. Called the right witnesses and rested your case way before we all thought you would. I just wonder if the jury ever saw pictures of the girl at 14? If not, why not? She was just a little girl.

Also Curious

I was wondering the same thing ... why is Jeffs the only one being charged? In no way am I defending Jeffs or his actions. I just wonder why the cousin/husband, as well as the victims parents are not being charged too. Didn't they play a large role, maybe even as large as Jeffs? Can someone familiar with the case and legal system please explain to me why? Thank you.

Mort

How sad that the FLDS community must see their prophet jailed. the 'victim' of all this will
stand before the Judgement Seat of God one day
and explain her actions.

Move On

I think justice has been done, but I fear not much will change now. The way to remove a religious leader isn't to convict him in the courts of some infraction somewhat unrelated to his real offense. That just makes him a martyr and someone else just takes his place.

I think if we gave him some room, Jeffs was ready to denounce his religion all together (which may have cleared things up once-and-for-all and had a real impact for the future). But because we were using our legal system to threaten him and he was facing being put in jail for the rest of his life if he made that statement, of course he was advised by his lawers to not make that statement. And now he can't. It would be suicide.

The way to remove a false-prophet is to shed light on him and let his folowers decide to leave him, not put him in jail on some contrived charge. That just feeds into their fear of outsiders and the government opressing them.

So the zelousness of our prosecutors may have cost us the only real chance we may ever have to resolve this conflict once-and-for-all.

Bigotry

The charges are trumped. This was clearly not rape. They replaced a juror in the final process to get a conviction when the juror thought he was innocent. Also the actual husband was not charged so we also no its not rape.

Basically this case demonstrates prejudice against the FLDS. Also 98% of those interviewed are very happy living in their FLDS communities.

Jeffs was frames, that's all there is to it.

Legalities

I'm no lawyer but remember Enron and the other corporate scandals? Many people in the company did illegal things to support the CEO's and other Executives but they were never charged. Jeff's had a position of authority over his followers and had to convince husbands and parents to allow the spiritual marriages of under aged girls. I'm glad that Mark S. and others went for the top just like what happened with Enron. If a religious leader forced all of their followers to break the law they may not go over the million members but they will go after the leader(s). Maybe action will be taken agains parents and husbands but as far as i'm concerned they took down the force behind bad decisions.

Frederick of Logan

I have commented before but never got my remarks printed(accepted) Maybe this time!! Jeffs is not spiritual leader or else he would not have "forced" Jane Doe into a very undesirable marriage even though he preaches that is what God desires and calls it a celestial marriage. The God I know is far different than the God Jeffs knows. God forces no man or woman to heaven. Jeffs got what he deserves is my opinion but I do feel remorse in this situation.

Hmm

How many people who are saying this is a great legal victory would like to see today's LDS church / leaders prosecuted for something like denying women the opportunity to join the highest councils in the church because they are female and cannot hold the priesthood?

Even though this was not prosecuted as a religion issue, it has many overtones of curtailing freedom of religion / religious practices.

With that said I do agree with the verdict because the girl was underage, but I think there are other issues to think about too.

Rick S

The parents and cousin could be tried after being formally charged, which they were not in this trial. The victim would need to cooperate for this to be done and perhaps she just doesn't have it in her. It seems that this trial has extracted a high price from her and reliving the whole ugly situation to convict the others, coupled with the conflicted feelings that she would certainly have, just may not be personally worth it to her.

Prosecutors are often content to cut the head off the snake and leave the rest of it alone. Then again, now that they have a trial win under their belt on this phase, they may be ready to proceed with a second round of indictments and trials.

I respect other people's right to practice their beliefs, even these polygamists. However, this pedophilia, thinly masked as religiously sanctioned marital sexual activity, has no place anywhere in our society and doubly so for rape. Let adults everywhere realize and understand that these kinds of fixations are wrong and are to be avoided like a plague.

Jeffs abused the position of authority he had in their culture and I'm glad to see the conviction.

sunnystgeorge

This case is only the beginning of several others. I am sure that the husband will now be charged, as well as other family members. Jeffs now faces charges in Arizona, and then by the Federal Government. I do not believe he will ever see another day outside of a jail or prison.

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