Sect elder says church to forbid underage marriage

Associated Press/June 2, 2008

Eldorado, Texas - An elder in a Texas polygamist group says church policy going forward will to be to forbid any girl to marry who is not old enough to legally consent in the state where she lives.

Willie Jessop of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints said Monday the church has been widely misunderstood. But he says the church will not sanction marriages of underage girls and will counsel members against such unions.

Jessop, a church leader, insists marriages within the church have always been consensual.

A district judge earlier Monday brought an end to one of the nation's largest ever custody cases by signing an order allowing the children to leave foster care. Children began returning to their parents hours later.

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