Fresh suspect in Jayden Headley case
5:00AM Sunday September 02, 2007
By Stephen Cook
Jayden and his dad Chris Jones.
The tug-of-love battle over 7-year-old Hamilton boy Jayden Headley has taken another significant twist, with news of a fresh suspect - and the possibility the boy's mother could face a charge of perjury.
The Herald on Sunday understands police are trying to extradite a New Zealand woman who fled to Australia following the arrest of Matauri Bay couple Tania Thomason and Jeremy Daly, both of whom have been jailed for 10 months for their part in kidnapping Jayden a year ago.
The woman is believed to have been friends with the couple and is alleged to have played a part in the abduction of Jayden.
It is also understood police are considering laying a perjury charge against Jayden's mother Kay Skelton following her claims that Chris Jones was not the boy's biological father.
Skelton, with Jayden's grandfather Dick Headley and family friend Nikala Taylor, will appear in court in a week for a depositions hearing on charges of kidnapping the boy.
The possible perjury charge arises from claims Skelton made in 2005 that a do-it-yourself DNA kit showed former husband Brett Skelton was Jayden's natural father rather than Jones. But the results were later discredited by scientific tests.
The long-running battle over custody of Jayden began in 2001 when Jones and Skelton split.
What followed were applications and cross-applications for custody, claims and counter-claims of physical and psychological abuse, questions over paternity and suggestions of a "continued conspiracy to keep Jones out of Jayden's life".
In December 2002, Skelton took her son and lived for eight months on Australia's Gold Coast, only returning to avoid Hague Convention proceedings.
Jayden was allegedly kidnapped by Headley from outside Hamilton Library last August. Two months later, Skelton was jailed for contempt for failing to reveal where her son was.
While in hiding, Jayden and Headley initially stayed at Daly and Thomason's Matauri Bay home. After five months in hiding, Headley, 68, returned the child to police in January.
Jayden has since been living with Jones, his current partner, Anita Hall, her 7-year-old daughter, Jessie, and the couple's newborn baby.