Joran van der Sloot may soon face extradition to the United States to stand trial for the extortion of Natalee Holloway's mother. He is currently in prison in Peru for the murder of a young woman and is serving a 28-year sentence. His lawyer is fighting the extradition, as he fears his client would not receive a fair trial and would instead be charged with the murder of Holloway.
- REUTERS/Pilar Olivares(PERU - Tags: POLITICS CRIME LAW)
"In the United States, they would find him guilty. Over there Joran is, after Osama bin Laden, the most hated person there is," van der Sloot's lawyer Maximo Altez told the American Foreign Press. "Once he's in the U.S., there are no guarantees that he would not be charged with Holloway's murder."
The U.S. wants van der Sloot's extradition after he allegedly told Holloway's mother that he would give her information about her daughter's whereabouts in exchange for $25,000. He took the money and fled to Peru, and the U.S. is seeking to have him extradited solely on those charges.
If van der Sloot is extradited and convicted, he could face five to 10 years in prison, but at the end of that sentence, he would have to be returned to Peru to finish his previous 28-year sentence. Of course, there is always the chance that van der Sloot would be charged in connection with the Holloway case, which could potentially hinder the U.S.'s chances of having him extradited.
"With all the bad guys running around- al Qaeda and other international terrorists- do you really think the U.S. is going to go after every guy who tries to extort money from a U.S. citizen? Absolutely not. The U.S. wants to get ahold of him and charge him with Holloway's murder," Michael Griffith, senior partner at the International Legal Defense Counsel, told the Huffington Post.
Peru's hesitation is completely understandable, as it wants justice for the 21-year-old Stephany Flores. He repeatedly stabbed the young girl in his Lima hotel room in 2010. Van der Sloot could be paroled after serving nine years, giving the U.S. its opportunity to prosecute.
However, as Griffith points out, "Peru would be getting rid of a huge public relations problem. This case has cast a spotlight on their country and their prisons and, of course, they don't like that. They don't want their dirty clothes hung out in front of the press, and that's what's been happening."