Constitutional arguments begin in Canadian polygamy case

Source: Associated Press

CRANBROOK, British Columbia (AP) — A Canadian man found guilty of marrying two dozen women says he believed he was entitled to practice polygamy because he wasn’t charged when police investigated him in the 1990s.

Winston Blackmore appeared in British Columbia Supreme Court in Cranbrook this week where a judge is hearing arguments on whether Canada’s polygamy laws infringe on his rights to freedom of religion and expression.

Blackmore is a leader of the community of Bountiful, British Columbia, where residents follow the teachings of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

He was found guilty earlier this year of polygamy after the court heard he had married 24 women, including three who were 15 years old at the time. A co-defendant, James Oler, was found guilty of having five wives.

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2 replies

  1. I’ve been wondering if these anti-polygamy western governments have any laws regarding the number of mistresses a man can have or keep?

    If not, than the only difference between the two situations is a lawful marriage with rights for both sides while with the other none!

  2. as these multiple marriages are not legally recognized in Canada how can they be a crime? And I am not aware of the fact that mistresses are limited to only one by law. (There used to be a law ‘prohibition of concubinage’, but as ‘everyone does it’ this law has been scrapped.

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