Former teacher in sex scandal briefly jailed after missing court date

FILE PHOTO 14NOV97 - Mary Kay LeTourneau, a former teacher imprisoned for having sexual relations wi..
Mary Kay LeTourneau, a former teacher imprisoned for having sexual relations with a 14-year-old boy, is shown sitting in court at the Regional Justice Center in Kent, Washington, on November 14, 1997, before being sentenced for the crime.

(Reuters) - Mary Kay Letourneau, the former Seattle-area teacher who served seven years in prison for sleeping with a 12-year-old student, was briefly jailed on Monday after missing a court appearance in connection with her driving without a license, law enforcement officials said.

Letourneau was booked into King County Jail early on Monday morning and released at 1:05 p.m. after posting $5,000 bail, a jail official said.

The sixth-grade teacher gained notoriety in 1997 when it emerged that she was involved sexually with Vili Fualaau, then a student in her class.

Their affair, begun when Letourneau was 34 and Fualaau was 12, touched off a media frenzy coverage, including books and a television film.

Letourneau was sentenced to prison in late 1997, pregnant with Fualaau's child. She was paroled in January 1998 and barred from contact with him.

Less than a month later the two were caught together in her car at 3 a.m. Letourneau was sent back to serve the rest of her term in prison, where she bore his second child, confirming they had resumed their sexual relationship.

Letourneau was released from prison in 2004. She and Fualaau married the following year.

(Reporting by Jonathan Kaminsky; Editing by Leslie Adler)