Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
International

Van Der Sloot Was Paid $25K In FBI Sting

Dutch citizen Joran van der Sloot is escorted by police officers outside a Peruvian police station near the border with Chile on Friday. Peruvian police said van der Sloot confessed to killing a young woman in his Lima hotel room May 30.
Karel Navarro
/
AP
Dutch citizen Joran van der Sloot is escorted by police officers outside a Peruvian police station near the border with Chile on Friday. Peruvian police said van der Sloot confessed to killing a young woman in his Lima hotel room May 30.

U.S. authorities paid a Dutchman linked to the presumed death of an American teenager in Aruba $25,000 in a sting operation, two government officials told NPR.

Authorities were trying to build a murder case against Joran van der Sloot in the case of Natalee Holloway, who disappeared five years ago during a high school graduation trip to Aruba. Van der Sloot was arrested twice in connection with Holloway's disappearance but there wasn't enough evidence to charge him.

Investigators resurrected the investigation about six weeks ago when van der Sloot allegedly told a lawyer for Holloway's family that he would provide information about their daughter's disappearance in exchange for cash.

Holloway's mother, Beth Twitty, contacted law enforcement authorities in Alabama, and the FBI set a sting operation in motion targeting van der Sloot. Officials told NPR the FBI provided $25,000 as part of a sting against van der Sloot. It is believed that van der Sloot used the money to fly to Peru, where he met 21-year-old Stephany Flores, who was found dead in his Lima hotel room last week. Authorities say he has confessed to the killing.

Private investigator Bo Dietl told The Associated Press that in April, van der Sloot contacted an attorney for the Holloway family, John Kelly, and offered to explain how Holloway died in exchange for $250,000.

Dietl said that at a May 10 meeting in Aruba, Kelly offered van der Sloot $25,000 upfront, with the rest to be delivered once the body was found.

"He said he pushed Natalee Holloway, her head hit a rock," Dietl said. He said the body was buried "near a construction site near their house," but the information proved to be false.

"He's lied so much, we don't know," said Dietl, who has been working with Kelly on the case.

Van der Sloot is being held in Peru in connection with the May 30 killing of Flores, who was found beaten to death, her neck broken, in the 22-year-old Dutchman's hotel room. Police said the two met playing poker at a casino.

Peru's chief police spokesman, Col. Abel Gamarra, said Monday that van der Sloot had confessed to killing Flores. A Dutch newspaper has quoted a family lawyer as saying the confession may have been coerced.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

What questions do you have about the Statewide General Election coming up on Nov. 8? Submit your questions here, and we'll try to answer them in our reporting.