A mother and stepfather have pleaded guilty to charges they fled the country more than a decade ago with the woman's daughter amid a custody dispute.

The surprising pleas took place during a pretrial hearing on Wednesday.

Genevieve and Scott Kelley pleaded guilty to witness tampering, a misdemeanor. Felony charges of custodial interference were dropped. Genevieve Kelley will spend 10 months in jail and Scott Kelley will serve five months.

They took then-8-year-old Mary Nunes out of the country in 2004. They said they did it to protect the girl and accused her biological father, Mark Nunes, of abuse.

Mark Nunes was investigated but never charged.

Genevieve Kelley turned herself in November, saying she wanted to go to trial. Scott Kelley and Mary Nunes returned to the U.S. in April.