A man from Texas has been convicted of kidnapping his girlfriend and plotting to “brainwash her” in a New Mexico cave.
Arlington, Texas native Jack Morgan was found guilty on one count of kidnapping and one count of conspiracy to commit kidnapping in a federal court last week, according to PEOPLE.
The 32-year-old and his 19-year-old accomplice Sophie Brown reportedly kidnapped the victim from her Las Vegas apartment on the morning of Jan. 30, and were eventually stopped by police on their way to New Mexico.
A witness reported the abduction to law enforcement, claimed to have seen the two carrying the bound victim in only her underwear out of the apartment building.
When police caught up to Morgan, they discovered the woman along with evidence that there was a struggle. It was also reported that the Morgan and Brown had been planning the crime for more than a year.
Morgan has reportedly been representing himself through his legal proceedings, but he does have an advisory councilor named Dustin Marcello, who is a defense attorney by trade.
“He [Morgan] did say he built a cave out there,” Marcello told PEOPLE. “He told the jury it was more about working with your hands and being in a natural environment, doing physical labor. A spiritual thing.”
“There were a number of concerning things that he [Morgan] felt she was engaged in that would ultimately result in injury to her mortal soul,” Marcello explained about Morgan's trial. “He presented what he felt was his reasoning behind what he did. And the jury disagreed.”
“He basically said, ‘I did everything the prosecution submitted,’ ” Marcello says. “[Morgan] felt he had a paramount responsibility [to go through with the abduction], and at the end of the day it was more a greater good that he proceed.”
As for her role in the crime, Brown pleaded guilty last month to one count of conspiracy to commit kidnapping, and reportedly expressed remorse over the part she played.
Joshua Tomsheck, Brown's lawyer, said that Morgan believed “the victim and my client are both his wives and he is a messenger of God of some sort.”
“One thing that [Brown] expressed from the moment I began representing her is her remorse for what the victim went through,” Tomsheck added, “and there was certainly a sense of relief that the victim wasn’t harmed more than she was.”