Jailed polygamist leader Warren Jeffs taken to prison hospital

Polygamist Warren Jeffs, centre, is flanked by Las Vegas Metro Police SWAT officers during an...

Polygamist Warren Jeffs, centre, is flanked by Las Vegas Metro Police SWAT officers during an extradition hearing at the Clark County Regional Justice Center in Las Vegas in this August 31, 2006 file photograph. (REUTERS/Las Vegas Sun/Steve Marcus/Handout/Files)

Jom Forsyth, Reuters

, Last Updated: 3:00 PM ET

SAN ANTONIO, Texas - Warren Jeffs, the polygamist leader serving a life prison term for sexually assaulting two young girls at his sect's ranch in Texas, has been taken to a prison hospital, prison officials said on Monday.

A spokesman for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice said Jeffs was transferred to the hospital in Galveston on March 11 and was in stable condition. The spokesman, Robert Hurst, said Jeffs was admitted with "a non life-threatening medical condition."

Jeffs, 58, is the leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, a breakaway sect from the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, informally known as the Mormon Church.

The sect preaches that polygamy leads to a favoured place in heaven.

He was convicted in Texas in 2011 for sexual assault relating to what his sect called "celestial marriages" to two underage girls at a religious compound in west Texas.

Texas officials raided the ranch in 2008, and, using material seized in the raid, indicted Jeffs on charges that he had sexual relations with a 12-year-old girl and a 15-year-old girl.

At one point during the trial, prosecutors said Jeffs has more than 70 "spiritual wives."

Jeffs has been hospitalized previously during his prison sentence. In 2011, he was taken to a prison hospital after going on a hunger strike.


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