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Lisa's next stop in her investigation into the secret world of polygamy was Colorado City, Arizona—home to Warren Jeffs and his followers.

When his father, Rulon, died in 2002, Jeffs assumed control of the largest and most secretive polygamist sect, known as the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, or FLDS. Jeffs allegedly controlled the marriages of his followers, assigning wives to favored members and taking wives away from others.

In May 2006, Jeffs was placed on the FBI's 10 Most Wanted Listand was later featured on America's Most Wanted based on charges that he organized "marriages" between men and underage girls. In August 2006 he was arrested near Las Vegas. And in September 2007, Jeffs was convicted on two counts of accomplice to rape. He now awaits sentencing and a second trial in Arizona on multiple charges of both accomplice to incest and sex with minors.

Lisa's guide in Colorado City is Carolyn Jessop. Carolyn was raised by three mothers and has 36 brothers and sisters. At 18, she says she was forced to marry a powerful 50-year-old FLDS leader, Merril Jessop. Carolyn had eight of Merril's 54 children, but she says she was always desperate for freedom. Four years ago, she risked her life by taking her children and escaping Colorado City in the middle of the night.
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FROM: Polygamy in America: Lisa Ling Reports
Published on October 26, 2007

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