‘Peter Boy’s’ mother posts bail

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The mother of Peter Kema Jr., aka “Peter Boy,” was freed after posting $5,000 bail in a welfare fraud case.

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The mother of Peter Kema Jr., aka “Peter Boy,” was freed after posting $5,000 bail in a welfare fraud case.

Jaylin Maureen Kema was to have been arraigned Monday in Hilo Circuit Court, but will receive another court date, according to Deputy Prosecutor Rick Damerville.

The 45-year-old Pahoa woman is accused of fraudulently collecting $17,000 in welfare benefits between May 2010 and July 15. She’s charged with second-degree theft, a Class C felony that carries a possible five-year prison term upon conviction.

Kema and her 45-year-old husband, Peter Kema Sr., were arrested after police and the state Department of Human Services served a search warrant on their Uilani Drive home in Ainaloa subdivision Nov. 3.

Kema Sr. was booked on suspicion of drug and firearms charges after officers allegedly found marijuana, a marijuana derivative, an unregistered firearm with the serial number altered and ammunition, but was released Friday pending further investigation.

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Peter Boy, their then-6-year-old son, disappeared in 1997 and was missing for several months before he was reported missing. Kema Sr. told authorities he took the boy to Oahu and gave him up as a hanai, or informal Hawaiian adoption, to an “Aunty Rose Makuakane.”

The alleged hanai mother could not be found and police and prosecutors continue to investigate the disappearance of Peter Boy as a homicide, but charges have not been brought.

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