Father of Holloway suspect wins damages
3 August 2006, AMSTERDAM — Dutchman Paul van der Sloot, father of the chief suspect in the Natalee Holloway disappearance case, has been awarded financial damages.
3 August 2006
AMSTERDAM — Dutchman Paul van der Sloot, father of the chief suspect in the Natalee Holloway disappearance case, has been awarded financial damages.
A court on the autonomous Dutch island of Aruba ruled that Paul van der Sloot was arrested and detained for four days without due cause last year as part of the investigation. He was awarded 50,000 Aruban Guilders in compensation. This is equal to EUR 21,800 or USD 27,900.
His son, Joran, was the main suspect in the disappearance of Alabama teenager Natalee Holloway on the Caribbean island.
Holloway, 18, was holidaying on Aruba in May 2005 with school friends to celebrate their graduation. She disappeared on the night of 30 May, and extensive searches have failed to find any trace of her.
She was last seen leaving a bar at 1am with Dutch youth Joran van der Sloot, then 17, and brothers Deepak Kalpoe, 21, and Satish Kalpoe, 18. They were in Deepak's car. Holloway was due to fly back to the US the following day but she failed to arrive at the airport.
The three young men were arrested on 9 June 2005 and questioned. They first told police that they dropped her off at the Holiday Inn where she was staying. Subsequently, they admitted that they had agreed to lie.
Joran van der Sloot said he had been alone with Holloway on the beach near another hotel, about 1 kilometre from the Holiday Inn. He denied having sex with her or harming her in any way. He claimed he left her on the beach at her own request. Joran claimed he wanted to go home as he had school the next day.
The Kalpoe brothers were released from custody on 14 July 2005, but were re-arrested on 26 August 2005 on suspicion of rape and murder. Joran and the Kalpoes were released on 4 September 2005 and have not been charged with any crime in connection with the disappearance.
Paul van der Sloot, a judge in training on Aruba at the time, was arrested on 22 June 2005 on suspicion of conspiring on or after the fact with his son. He was released without charge four days later but still considered a suspect.
He won a civil action for unjust detention against the Aruban authorities in November of that year and has now been awarded damages. He is no longer a suspect. The judge in the civil case stressed his ruling related solely to Paul van der Sloot.
Both father and his son deny any wrongdoing.
The police handling of the case, coupled with the failure to find any trace of Holloway, has generated a lot of criticism in the US. There have been calls for American tourists to boycott the island.
Natalee's mother Beth Twitty has spearheaded a campaign to keep up the pressure on the authorities to find her daughter.
On 6 February this year, Joran and Paul van der Sloot were served with a civil lawsuit by Natalee's parents in New York. Joran went to the US, against his lawyer's advice, to do a television interview.
[Copyright Expatica News 2006]
Subject: Dutch news