A court case involving two men from Bountiful charged with polygamy is wrapping up its first week in BC Supreme Court in Cranbrook.
One of the latest witnesses to be called to the stand is Historian Richard Bennett.
He testified Thursday to review the beliefs of the mainstream Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and where polygamy fits into its practices.
Bennett says the practise of polygamy was removed from the church’s doctrines after the US Supreme Court upheld two federal laws banning plural marriage in 1904. However, Canada’s polygamy law has never been tested by its highest court.
Earlier this week, Winston Blackmore entered a “not guilty” plea to a charge of practicing polygamy after roughly two dozen names, who are all said to be his wives, were read out in a Key City courtroom.
James Oler also pleaded not guilty to an identical charge, for allegedly having four wives.
The first of its kind trial is expected to last three weeks, with Crown presenting evidence for 10-12 days.
Other witnesses expected to be called over the course of the trial include a Texas Ranger who took the stand earlier this week and one of the wives of Winston Blackmore.
– Jeff Johnson, with files from the Canadian Press