updated 7/10/2008 3:29:04 PM ET 2008-07-10T19:29:04

Polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs was back in an Arizona jail cell Thursday, amid lingering questions about what prompted his hospitalization in Las Vegas for treatment of a "weakened state of health," a sheriff's official said.

The 52-year-old leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints was returned Wednesday to the Kingman, Arizona, jail, said Trish Carter, spokeswoman for Mohave County Sheriff Tom Sheahan.

"The obvious question now is what the problem was," said Carter, who said jailers were not told Jeffs' medical diagnosis but did not believe his condition was life-threatening. Authorities said he was having convulsions when he was found in his jail cell Tuesday before being taken to the hospital.

Jeffs was first treated at Kingman Regional Medical Center, and then flown by medical helicopter about 100 miles to Las Vegas, where he was hospitalized under heavy guard. A hospital spokesman said no patient had been listed under Jeffs' name.

Jeffs has been in custody since 2006
Jeffs has been in custody since his August 2006 arrest outside Las Vegas stemming from marriages he allegedly arranged between underage girls and older men. He had been on the run for more than a year, and made the FBI's Most Wanted List before his capture.

Jeffs was named in 2002 as the president, or prophet, of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, an insular sect with nearly 6,000 followers that practices polygamy in arranged marriages that have sometimes involved underage girls.

Many FLDS members live in the twin border towns of Colorado City, Arizona, and Hildale, Utah, about 160 miles northeast of Las Vegas. Another FLDS ranch was raided in west Texas in April, setting off a lengthy legal battle over the custody of hundreds of children.

Utah court documents show Jeffs lost 30 pounds in jail awaiting his 2007 trial in St. George, Utah, and that he was hospitalized for treatment of a self-imposed fast, dehydration and sleep deprivation.

A clinical social worker who interviewed Jeffs in April 2007 reported Jeffs attempted to hang himself in January 2007, and was seen several days later throwing himself against walls and banging his head.

Records show Jeffs was treated in a Utah prison infirmary in February 2007 for health problems attributed to refusing to eat.

Jeffs was convicted by a Utah jury of two counts of first-degree felony rape as an accomplice. He was sentenced to two consecutive terms of five years to life in prison for his role in the 2001 marriage of a 14-year-old follower to her 19-year-old cousin.

Jeffs is charged in Arizona as an accomplice with four counts of sexual conduct with a minor.

Four counts of incest as an accomplice were dropped last month after Mohave County Superior Court Judge Steven Conn found Arizona's incest law does not apply to the arranged marriages of teenage girls and their older male relatives.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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