A mother and son who fell 'madly in love ' 18 years after she gave him up for adoption have admitted incest.
Monica Mares, 36, and her son Caleb Peterson, 19, were last night ordered by a court to stay away from each other - but they have insisted that will not stop them continuing their sexual relationship.
MirrorOnline reported last August how the couple, from Clovis in New Mexico, were arrested after a neighbour alerted police to their incestuous relationship.
The 'couple' went public - and said nothing would tear them apart.
NBC4i reports that yesterday the pair accepted a plea deal just as jury selection began for their trial - and were swiftly sentenced by the Honorable Drew D. Tatum.
They will both spend 18 months under supervised probation which prohibits them from contacting each other.
The pair will also serve a further 18 month unsupervised probation.
NBC further reports that District Attorney Andrea Reeb, who prosecuted the cases for the State of New Mexico, told the court she felt probation was an appropriate resolution as neither defendant had a criminal record - and putting them in prison would accomplish nothing.
Reeb added that treatment was more important than punishment in this kind of matter.
But critics fear they will follow up on threats to move to one of the 50 states where the punishment for incest is not so tough. In fact, in Rhode Island sexual relationships among adult relatives are legal.
MirrorOnline previously reported the couple had faced up to 18 months in prison and/or a £3,000 fine if found guilty of incest at a trial.
The couple said they were 'madly in love' and nothing will tear them apart.Caleb was adopted when he was a baby and only reunited with his mum 18 years later.
Mother-of-nine Monica was just 16 when she gave birth to her son and reconnected with him over Facebook before arranging to meet up last Christmas.
They soon began a sexual relationship and Caleb moved in with his mum and her two youngster children - his own half siblings.
In an interview with Daily Mail Online , the couple told how they are willing to risk everything to be together - and have decided to go public with their affair in a bid to raise awareness of Genetic Sexual Attraction (GSA) relationships .
Their relationship came to light when they were reported to the police and charged with incest.
Monica said that it didn't feel strange or wrong when the couple began their sexual relationship - but admits that it most likely wouldn't have happened if she had raised her son from birth.
She said: "The first time we were physical ended up holding hands and then we ended up kissing and the kissing led to other things.
"I felt comfortable with him and we fell even more deeply in love."
As well as legal trouble, the couple have met opposition from friends, neighbours, family members and the wider community and Monica has been physically attacked received death threats.
Despite the opposition to the couple's relationship, they do have supporters in the community - including Dayton Chavez, the father to two of Monica's sons Moses, nine, and Joseph, 12.
He said: "I've told them I still love you guys either way. I support them."
The couple - who have roots with Native American Apache tribes - were being backed by Cristina Shy who runs lilysgardener.com, a support and advocacy website for related couples, also known as consanguinamorous people.
She said: "'It needs to be brought to the attention of everybody in the country and people need to start thinking differently.
'It was the same with gay people just a few years ago and now they can get married they are accepted."