Menu
News

Daughter watches her mum go to jail for kidnapping her

IN US: Ms Geldenhuys.
IN US: Ms Geldenhuys.

SAMANTHA Geldenhuys watched a judge in the US sentence her mother to jail yesterday after she pleaded guilty to her kidnapping.

Ms Geldenhuys, of Maroochydore, was abducted by her mother as an infant more than 20 years ago and grew up on the Sunshine Coast.

Fighting back tears, she told a judge she had had a good life even though she didn't know her birth father while growing up.

"I was loved beyond belief," Ms Geldenhuys, now 21, told US District Judge Richard Gergel after her mother, Dorothy Lee Barnett, pleaded guilty to parental kidnapping.

Barnett, 54, also pleaded guilty to two counts of falsifying passport applications.

Judge Gergel sentenced Barnett to 21 months in prison followed by two years of supervised parole.

She is expected to be released in a few months because she gets credit for time served since her arrest in November, 2013.

Barnett was tracked down in Australia, where she had been living under another name since 2007. It was the first her daughter knew of her past.

Topics:  editors picks kidnap


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Region faces wild wind

DESTROYED: Half of the roof of the Moranbah home was ripped off from the 104km/h wind.

Moranbah residents say weather is worse than the cyclone.

Heroic rescue saves life

CLOSE CALL: Leslie Cruthers and Buddha at the spot the playful pup fell into the Nogoa River.

Kayakers rush to save dog walker clinging to riverbank.

National super star at age 13

Competing in Rotorua, New Zealand earlier this year.

Dingo local takes on international motocross competition.

Local Partners