Friday, November 06, 2009

First Conviction From Raid on FLDS Texas Ranch Is Handed Down

Yesterday, a jury in a state court in Texas convicted FLDS Church leader Raymond Jessop of sexually assaulting a 16-year old who he had taken as one of his nine wives. The New York Times and Salt Lake Tribune report on the conviction, the first resulting from the raid by Texas authorities of the sect's Yearning for Zion Ranch. During the trial, the defense argued that the raid on the FLDS compound which produced documents crucial to Jessop's conviction were illegally seized. The raid was triggered by a phone call that later was found to be a hoax. Jessop will be sentenced after a hearing before the jury on Monday. He faces up to 20 years in prison. (See prior related posting.)