Federal Agents Hold Polygamy Summit Today

Federal Agents Hold Polygamy Summit Today

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(KSL News) A groundbreaking summit on polygamy begins today in St. George.

Currently thousands of people live a polygamous lifestyle and many of them are in a community that straddles the Utah/Arizona border.

Today federal agents from both Arizona and Utah will meet to discuss the many social and legal issues entangled with the community, and polygamy.

One issue is who should be charged in such cases -- the couples or the town's religious leaders who often order the multiple marriages.

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff says both should beware.

"We want the message to be sent that if you are performing or ordering these marriages, you too stand the possibility of being charged with second degree child bigamy," Shurtleff says.

An attorney for the town says that instead of prosecuting the polygamists, an open dialogue is needed to help outsiders understand the religious beliefs of the people.

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