Joran van der Sloot, 36, confessed to killing Natalee Holloway earlier this month. He will return to Peru to finish out a separate murder sentence
Days after appearing in an Alabama courtroom, where his confession to murdering Natalee Holloway was finally made public, Joran van der Sloot will return to Peru today to finish out a separate murder sentence there, the Associated Press reports, citing Peru’s head of Interpol, Col. Aldo Avila.
As of early Tuesday afternoon, van der Sloot remained in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service, Stacy Crane, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Northern District of Alabama confirmed to PEOPLE. The U.S. Department of Justice has a long-standing policy of prohibiting comment on extradition schedules, citing safety concerns for the escorting law enforcement officers, a spokesperson for the department tells PEOPLE, adding that there is no new information available on the extradition at this time.
Van der Sloot, 36, was temporarily extradited to Alabama in June to face extortion and wire fraud charges in a case connected to Natalee’s 2005 disappearance.
Earlier this month, he pleaded guilty to both charges, and as part of the plea deal, for the first time – hooked to a polygraph test – detailed how he killed Natalee on an Aruban beach on the last day of her graduation trip in May 2005.
Over hours of interviews with federal prosecutors and agents, he described in cold detail, first reported in PEOPLE, how he had killed Natalee after she rejected his sexual advances — kicking her in the face and then smashing a cinder block into her head so that her face “collapsed in.” Then, he said — in a transcript of the confession obtained by PEOPLE — that he walked her limp body out to sea.
“Even though knowing the answer from such a brutal confession can just blister and burn your soul, I needed to know what happened,” Beth Holloway, Natalee’s mother, told PEOPLE in an interview shortly after. “The not knowing is more tortuous than knowing.”
Natalee was last seen leaving a bar with van der Sloot during a high school graduation trip to Aruba on May 30, 2005. Van der Sloot, then 17, was arrested several times in connection to the 18-year-old’s disappearance but never charged. Natalee was legally declared dead in 2012, but her body was never found.
In court Oct. 18, van der Sloot admitted to taking about $25,000 of Beth's money in 2010 on the false premise of giving the grieving mother answers about her daughter’s disappearance. After saying he would direct the family to Natalee's body in exchange for the funds, van der Sloot later emailed them to say his intel was “worthless,” prosecutors say.
Instead, $25,000 richer, van der Sloot flew from Aruba to Peru in May 2010. By the end of the month, another student, 21-year-old Stephany Flores Ramírez, was dead — exactly five years to the day of Natalee’s disappearance.
Van der Sloot – who until this June had been in a Peruvian prison on a 28-year murder sentence for her 2010 killing — later reportedly told investigators that Flores Ramírez had seen an online message accusing him of Natalee’s disappearance, leading to a violent struggle inside their Lima hotel room. He later admitted to beating, choking and smothering her to death May 30, 2010.
That’s when “we knew that most likely we were looking at Natalee being murdered with the same brutality and ferocity,” Beth told PEOPLE.
Van der Sloot was promptly arrested by Peruvian law enforcement, and Alabama filed federal fraud charges in June 2010.
An Alabama federal judge sentenced van der Sloot to 20 years to be served concurrently with his murder sentence in Peru. If he is released early there, he will return to the U.S. to finish out his sentence stateside.
Van der Sloot likely won’t be charged for Natalee’s killing, as Aruba’s statute of limitations for murder is just 12 years. Given that, it would be unusual for him to be charged there in Natalee's killing, although, following news coverage of his public confession, Aruban authorities emphasized that the case, which was reportedly previously closed, was in fact open.
For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!
Read the original article on People.