Birmingham, Ala. – A former Federal Bureau of Investigation criminal profiler says that she’s surprised it took so long for Joran van der Sloot, the primary suspect in Alabama student Natalee Holloway’s disappearance in 2005, to be extradited to the United States from Peru to be prosecuted.
Officials in Peru said late Wednesday that van der Sloot would be temporarily extradited to the United States to face extortion and wire fraud charges. He is in Peruvian prison after being sentenced to 28 years for the killing of 21-year-old Stephany Flores.
The 36-year-old Dutch national was indicted in 2010 on extortion and wire fraud after van der Sloot allegedly tried to sell information on where Natalee Holloway’s body was located.
He asked for a total of $250,000 with $25,000 upfront for the information, with the rest of the money to be paid out when Natalee Holloway’s remains were positively identified in Aruba, where she went missing.
It was announced Wednesday that Joran Van Der Sloot was set to be extradited from Peru. (Getty, AP Images)
Prosecutors allege that he led John Q. Kelly, the family’s lawyer, to a site where Holloway’s remains were claimed to be located. Van der Sloot lied about the location of the remains, prosecutors said in the July 2018 indictment.
Former FBI profiler Mary Ellen O’Toole told Fox News that she was surprised to hear van der Sloot is finally being extradited to the United States over almost 18 years after Natalee Holloway went missing.
“I was really surprised because it’s been such a long time, and I did not know that they were going to pursue these charges. I think it’s good but yeah, I was surprised to hear, surprised it took so long too,” O’Toole said.
O’Toole said that she was on-site in Aruba when authorities interviewed van der Sloot and brothers Satish and Deepak Kalpoe were interviewed, but said she couldn’t participate in the process.
Dutch citizen Joran Van der Sloot walks inside the courtroom during the reading of his verdict, in the Lurigancho prison in Lima January 13, 2012. Van der Sloot was sentenced to 28 years in prison by a Peruvian court on Friday for killing Stephany Flores in Lima in 2010, exactly five years after 18-year-old Alabama native Natalee Holloway disappeared on the island of Aruba after spending time with him. (Reuters/Pilar Olivares )
“I really wanted to get a sense of what that was like to see what the dynamics were within that location,” she said.
She said that van der Sloot was a “very glib and charming young man” based on observations from the interview, but didn’t “mean that necessarily as a compliment.”
“It seemed he was very comfortable around law enforcement. Unlike a lot of people might be in a case like this. Outwardly, he did not seem particularly rattled,” O’Toole said.
Beth Holloway fights back tears as she participates in the launch of the Natalee Holloway Resource Center on June 8, 2010, in Washington, DC. The nonprofit resource center was founded by Holloway and the National Museum of Crime & Punishment and was created to assist families of missing persons. Beth Holloway’s daughter Natalee is the Alabama teen who disappeared five years ago in Aruba. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
The former FBI profiler said that Aruban authorities showed her around the island to see “different parts of the water and what currents would bring a human body back to the water” as well as which currents wouldn’t.
Edward Alvarez, lawyer of Stephany Flores’ family, speaks during an audience at the prosecutor’s headquarters in Lima September 12, 2011. Alvarez reviewed the charges against Joran Van der Sloot, a Dutch man linked to the disappearance of U.S. citizen Natalee Holloway in Aruba in 2005 and who is now the prime suspect in the murder of 21-year-old Stephany Flores in Peru in 2010. (REUTERS/Pilar Olivares)
“It’s all very technical, and you had to really know what the water currents were like if you were going to dispose of a body in the water,” she said. “If you weren’t that meant land disposal. And the people within Aruba following the case, really rallied to attempt to look for her. I think the predominant thought at the time was that the offender could have taken her out in a boat and then dispose the body in out in deeper waters and that might have made a difference in terms of us not being able to find her, but the water is a disposal site seem to make the most sense to people that really understand the Caribbean and the water and currents.”
Van der Sloot pleaded guilty to murdering Flores in January 2012 and Natalee Holloway was legally declared dead in the same month.
Natalee Holloway was never found.
Natalee Holloway’s mother, Beth, said in a statement on Wednesday that justice is finally being served.
“I was blessed to have had Natalee in my life for 18 years, and as of this month, I have been without her for exactly 18 years. She would be 36 years old now. It has been a very long and painful journey, but the persistence of many is going to pay off. Together, we are finally getting justice for Natalee,” Beth Holloway said.
Beth Holloway also said she’s grateful for everyone involved in the extradition effort.
“While I will have much more to say later about what is happening, for now I want to express my sincere gratitude to President Dina Boluarte, the President of Peru, the warm people of Peru, the family of Stephany Flores, the FBI in Miami, Florida and in Birmingham, Alabama, the U.S. Attorney’s office in Birmingham, the U.S. Embassy in Peru and the Peruvian Embassy in the U.S., my longtime attorney John Q. Kelly who has worked tirelessly on this case, and George Seymore and Marc Wachtenheim of Patriot Strategies,” Beth Holloway said.
Fox News’ Michael Ruiz and Louis Casiano contributed to this report