September 24, 2023

FILE – Joran van der Sloot arrives to the courtroom for his sentence at San Pedro jail in Lima, Peru, Friday Jan. 13, 2012. The principle suspect within the 2005 disappearance of U.S. scholar Natalee Holloway is predicted to be handed over to U.S. officers in Peru and flown to the USA on Thursday, June 8, 2023, roughly a month after each international locations agreed on his extradition. (AP Picture/Karel Navarro, File)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Joran van der Sloot, the chief suspect within the 2005 disappearance of Natalee Holloway, arrived in the USA on Thursday to face expenses that he tried to extort cash from the lacking lady’s mom.

An FBI-operated airplane carrying van der Sloot landed at Birmingham’s Shuttlesworth Airport simply earlier than 2:30 p.m. and the suspect was escorted down the steps right into a black SUV, which was to take him to a federal courthouse for a listening to.

Van der Sloot was extradited to the USA from Peru the place he has been serving a 28-year sentence for the slaying of a Peruvian lady. He’s wished within the U.S. on one rely every of extortion and wire fraud — the one expenses to have ever linked the Dutch citizen to Holloway’s disappearance on the Caribbean island of Aruba. He was handed over in Peru to U.S. custody on Thursday, roughly a month after each international locations agreed on his extradition.

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Eighteen-year-old Holloway was on a highschool commencement journey with classmates to the Caribbean island of Aruba when she vanished. She was final seen leaving a bar with van der Sloot in 2005. Van der Sloot was questioned in Holloway’s disappearance, however by no means charged. U.S. prosecutors stated in 2010 van der Sloot reached out to Holloway’s mom, Beth Holloway, in search of the cash to reveal the placement of the younger lady’s physique.

Holloway’s physique has by no means been discovered.

Video and photographs launched by Peruvian authorities Thursday present him carrying denims and a black puffer jacket, shaking his shoulders and grimacing as officers regulate his handcuffs and take away an Interpol-marked vest. Footage and pictures additionally present van der Sloot in a convention room with legislation enforcement officers from Peru, the FBI and Interpol, and a well being care skilled.

The federal expenses filed in Alabama in opposition to van der Sloot stem from an accusation that he tried to extort the Holloway household in 2010, promising to cause them to her physique in trade for a whole lot of hundreds of {dollars}. A grand jury indicted him that yr on one rely every of wire fraud and extortion.

Holloway’s mysterious disappearance sparked years of reports protection and numerous true-crime podcasts.

Van der Sloot in 2012 pleaded responsible in Peru to killing 21-year-old Stephany Flores, a enterprise scholar from a distinguished Peruvian household. She was killed in 2010 5 years to the day after Holloway’s disappearance.

A 2001 treaty between Peru and the U.S. permits a suspect to be quickly extradited to face trial within the different nation. Van der Sloot’s legal professional, Máximo Altez, initially indicated his consumer wouldn’t problem his extradition however that modified Monday when he filed a writ of habeas corpus. A choose dominated in opposition to van der Sloot the next day.

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The time that van der Sloot finally ends up spending within the U.S. “will likely be prolonged till the conclusion of the legal proceedings,” together with the attraction course of, ought to there be one, in accordance with a decision printed in Peru’s federal register. The decision additionally states that U.S. authorities conform to return van der Sloot to the custody of Peru afterward.

Van der Sloot married a Peruvian lady in July 2014 in a ceremony at a maximum-security jail. He was transferred amongst Peruvian prisons in response to reviews that he loved privileges corresponding to tv, web entry and a cellphone, and accusations that he had threatened to kill a warden.

Joyce Vance, a federal prosecutor in Alabama when van der Sloot was charged, stated his arrival within the southern U.S. state is a long-awaited alternative for justice.

“We all the time say that justice delayed is justice denied, and there’s a sure easy fact to that,” stated Vance, the previous U.S. legal professional for the northern district of Alabama, which incorporates Birmingham. “However this case makes me assume generally justice delayed is definitely value it. It’s not optimum. It’s not what anyone would have wished on the outset, however justice delayed is healthier than justice by no means delivered.”


Garcia Cano reported from Mexico Metropolis. Related Press journalist Mauricio Muñoz in Lima, Peru, contributed to this report.