31 May 2012

Woman now facing kidnap charge

7:29 pm on 31 May 2012

A charge against a woman accused of taking a baby from an Auckland hospital has been upgraded.

Police say Neha Narayan took the two-day-old baby from the birthing unit at Middlemore Hospital in January this year and made it as far as the carpark before being stopped.

Ms Narayan had faced a charge of abduction, which carries a maximum penalty of seven years in prison.

However, her lawyer Heeni Phillips says the charge has been upgraded to one of kidnapping, which carries a maximum term of 14 years.

Ms Phillips says a High Court judge agreed to the move, following an application from the Crown.