The prime suspect in the 2005 disappearance of American teenager Natalee Holloway is finally slated to stand trial in U.S. courts.
Joran van der Sloot, the Dutch man suspected of kidnapping and murdering Holloway on the Caribbean island of Aruba, is likely to be extradited from Peru to the U.S. in the near future, according to CNN. No matter what the result of his trial in the states, Van der Sloot still faces 28 years of Peruvian incarceration on a separate conviction.
News of the extradition must come as a relief to the Holloway parents who have been fighting tooth and nail to ensure that justice is served on their daughter’s behalf. Ms. Hollway's mother in particular has been a prominent and vocal critic of Van der Sloot, who she suspects of killing her 18-year-old daughter while Natalee vacationed over spring break.
Maximo Altez, one of the attorneys representing Van der Sloot in Peru, told CNN that he suspects his client will be extradited within the next three months. If Van der Sloot is convicted for the second time, he will be returned to Peru to serve out the remainder of his sentence before being shipped back to America to serve his second sentence.
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In U.S. courts, Van der Sloot stands accused of attempting to extort $250,000 from Natalee Holloway’s parents in exchange for information about the location of their daughter’s remains. Prosecutors allege that Beth Holloway paid $25,000 to Van der Sloot, but that he never divulged any pertinent information about Natalee’s disappearance.
Under the Peruvian penal code, Van der Sloot will be eligible for parole in as little as ten years with good behavior. Attorney Altez says that his client fears extradition to the U.S. because of the brutal reputation of the American prison system.