They are trying to find a location where one underwater photograph was shot last October by a U.S. couple who were snorkeling in the area in about 15 feet of water. The photograph, as least as some suggest, appears to provide the outline of a human skeleton, complete with skull, arms, and even hands. This search is but the latest of dozens of similar land and sea searches for the missing girl who disappeared while on a school trip to Aruba in 2005.
Most know that Holloway was last seen in the company of three local youths, including two brothers and then teenager himself, Joran Van der Sloot. For many investigators, Van der Sloot was always the prime suspect in Holloway’s disappearance, especially noting that he allegedly has been caught in a number lies concerning his time with her on the night she disappeared. On at least two separate occasions he has “confessed” that he was with her when she died, once indicating in an undercover news video that he helped to dispose of her body in the ocean, perhaps accounting for the current interest in the underwater “skeleton.”
Van der Sloot, whose now deceased father was a lawyer in Aruba at the time of Holloway’s disappearance, allegedly said that she had died in his arms. His father, in reference to Holloway’s disappearance and his son’s possible connection to her feared death, was rumored to have said “No body, no case.” Should the structure photographed in Aruban waters prove first to be an actual human skeleton, and second, the remains of Holloway (ID’d by dental records and/or DNA), there now just could be “a body.”
On the secretly recorded media video tape, Van der Sloot says, referring to Holloway, “I tried to shake her and I was shaking the @!$%#. I was like, ‘What is wrong with you man?’ I almost wanted to cry.” He went on to suggest she had suffered a seizure in his arms and died – how romantic…
Van der Slootstated that after Holloway’s believed death that he used a local pay phone to call a friend, identified as “Daury,” who had a boat, and who came to the scene and helped him dispose of Holloway’s remains, probably in the nearby ocean. Van der Sloot has since denied any involvement in Holloway’s disappearance and believed death, saying he had simply lied (as he has many times in this case) about his involvement. When a friend of Van der Sloot’s named Daury Rodriguez was interviewed in 2008, he denied any involvement with Van der Sloot concerning Holloway, stating that Joran had subsequently apologized for naming him in this matter.
In the meantime a noted pathologist, after viewing the underwater photograph, doubts seriously that the object in the photograph was actually a human skeleton, especially one deposited in the ocean five years ago. He indicated the parts of the skeleton-like structure were out of proportion with a human skeleton, suggesting instead that the shape was more likely a rock formation as opposed to evidence of Holloway’s demise.
The photographer has since turned the original photo over to the FBI which is cooperating with Aruban investigators in their attempt to identify the exact spot where the picture was snapped some five months ago. While many have long since given up hope of this mystery ever being solved, I know that Natalee’s parents, whom I first met in Aruba at the time of their daughter’s disappearance, have never given up on finding her. For their sake I hope that the disappearance of Natalee is eventually solved and that those responsible for her death eventually face justice. Time will tell…
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