by Kurt Hildebrand
khildebrand@recordcourier.com

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February 4, 2014
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It’s complicated: Facebook post reveals bigamy

An Englishman living in Oregon was convicted and sentenced of gross misdemeanor attempted bigamy on Monday.

Saying it was only the second or third case of bigamy he’d ever seen, Judge Michael Gibbons sentenced Simon Merriman, 53, to a suspended 179-day jail sentence and ordered him to pay $10,200 to his soon-to-be ex-wife.

Merriman told Gibbons that he had three children with his wife in England.

Merriman’s wife in England reported the crime after she learned from Facebook her husband had married again.

On Monday he entered a plea to attempted bigamy. According to the Douglas County Recorder’s Office, he was married here on May 8, 2012.

Merriman said he has been living in the United States for seven years, and that his visa has expired. He’s attempting to get a green card, but the charge was in the way.

He told Gibbons he knew he was married.

Gibbons pointed out that in Nevada, an annulment is pretty easy to get if both parties agree.

Merriman’s attorney Tammy Riggs said that wasn’t an option with the wife in England, as the relationship is acrimonious. She said divorce proceedings were moving forward.

Gibbons ordered Merriman to make $500 a month payments to the Royal Bank of Scotland for the support of his 18-year-old son.

“Take the high road and get it done,” Gibbons said.


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The Record Courier Updated Feb 5, 2014 09:22AM Published Feb 4, 2014 07:22PM Copyright 2014 The Record Courier. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.