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‘Sister Wives’ lawyer wants Utah to pay his bills for polygamy case

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Posted at 3:15 PM, Sep 17, 2014
and last updated 2014-09-18 08:47:07-04

SALT LAKE CITY — The lawyer for reality TV polygamist Kody Brown and his wives is asking the state to pay his bills for winning the case involving Utah’s polygamy ban.

In a filing in U.S. District Court, Jonathan Turley asked for attorneys fees in connection with the case, which the judge granted when he struck down a portion of the state’s anti-polygamy law. Turley asks for $242,000 in compensation.

Read the filing here:

“This amount is also commensurate with the level of funding given to outside counsel by the state in analogous litigation,” Turley wrote, referencing the state’s ongoing appeal of same-sex marriage in Utah.

The case was brought by the Brown family, who came under investigation by Lehi police for polygamy. Kody Brown lived in Utah County with his four wives: Meri, Janelle, Christine and Robyn.

The Browns have said in court filings they were not interested in financial compensation from Utah taxpayers, satisfied with the ruling.

U.S. District Court Judge Clark Waddoups effectively decriminalized polygamy in Utah, striking down a portion of Utah’s bigamy laws that criminalized cohabitation. He preserved the portion of the law that made it a crime to seek multiple marriage licenses.

The Utah Attorney General’s Office has not formally said if it will appeal the ruling, but attorney general Sean Reyes told FOX 13 shortly before taking office he intended to.