BRITISH COLUMBIA

Brandon Blackmore, Ex-Wife Sentenced To Jail In Polygamous Child-Bride Case

The justice said it was important to "send a clear message to others."

08/11/2017 16:26 EDT | Updated 08/11/2017 16:28 EDT
(PHOTO: Jeff McIntosh/CP)
Brandon Blackmore, 70, arrives at court for a sentencing hearing in Cranbrook, B.C., on June 30, 2017. (PHOTO: Jeff McIntosh/CP)

CRANBROOK, B.C. — A former husband and wife from the polygamous community of Bountiful, B.C., are going to jail for taking a 13-year-old girl into the United States to marry the now-imprisoned leader of their sect.

A B.C. Supreme Court judge has sentenced Brandon Blackmore to a year in jail, while his ex-wife, Gail Blackmore, has been handed a term of seven months.

Both have been ordered to serve 18 months' probation.

The pair were found guilty in February of the charge of taking a child under the age of 16 out of Canada for sexual purposes.

"In my view a term of imprisonment is warranted in this case," Justice Paul Pearlman said during Friday's sentencing.

Their trial heard the girl was taken into the United States in 2004 to marry Warren Jeffs, the prophet of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, who is now serving a life sentence for assaulting two of his child brides.

Pearlman said it was important to "send a clear message to others, including members of the FLDS community" by imposing the jail term.

Pearlman said Brandon Blackmore's "degree of culpability was high," and the man didn't express any remorse for taking the girl to the United States to marry a man who was 49 years old at the time.

The judge said Gail Blackmore was a willing participant in the girl's removal from Canada.

Special prosecutor Peter Wilson told a sentencing hearing last month that 71-year-old Brandon Blackmore should serve a jail sentence of 12 to 18 months, while Gail Blackmore, 60, should get six to 12 months.

Wilson said Brandon Blackmore is more culpable than his ex-wife, but both were present at the wedding of the girl and knew what would happen.

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