(WKRG) — It’s a household name for families across the world – Natalee Holloway disappeared while on a graduation trip to Aruba in 2005. Now, the prime suspect in her disappearance is being extradited to Birmingham, Ala.
But how did we get here? Where was Joran Van der Sloot over the past 18 years? WKRG is delving into the case to catch you up to speed on the latest information.
May 24, 2005 – Natalee graduates high school
Natalee Holloway, 18, was set to begin the rest of her life starting on May 24, 2005. Natalie graduated from Mountain Brook High School. In the Fall, Natalee was supposed to be starting her college career at the University of Alabama on a full scholarship.
May 26, 2005 – Mountain Brook seniors arrive in Aruba
Natalee, along with 124 of her fellow graduates, arrived in Aruba for their five-day, unofficial graduation trip. The recent graduates were accompanied by seven chaperones who would check on the them each day to make sure everything was going well.
Carlos’n Charlie’s club in Oranjestad
May 30, 2005 – Natalee goes missing
Natalee and some of her classmates decided to go to, Carlos’n Charlie’s, a local club, to celebrate their last night of the trip. At 1:30 a.m., Natalee was seen leaving the Oranjestad, Aruba, nightclub with Joran van der Sloot, 17, and brothers Deepak and Satish Kalope. She was never seen or heard from again.
June 9, 2005 – Joran van der Sloot is arrested
Ten days after Natalee disappeared, Joran van der Sloot, along with the Kalope brothers, was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping and murder.
Sept. 3, 2005 – Van der Sloot is released
After months of being in custody, van der Sloot was released to his parents. No charges were filed against the three men at the time.
November 2007 – Van der Sloot is arrested again
Van der Sloot and the brothers are arrested again for their possible involvement in the case.
December 2007 – Van der Sloot is released, again
All three were released again with no charges being filed.
March 2010 – Van der Sloot says he will release location of body for $250,000
In March of 2010, Van der Sloot allegedly contacted Natalee’s mother, Beth Holloway, and said he would tell her where Natalee’s remains were located if she gave him $250,000. During a recorded operation, Beth’s attorney, John Kelly, met Van der Sloot at a hotel in Aruba and gave him $10,000 in cash. Beth then wired $15,000 to his bank account.
After the money was in Van der Sloot’s possession, he allegedly changed his story about the night Natalee disappeared. He claimed that Natalee had fallen and hit her head, killing her instantly. Van der Sloot then took Kelly to a home and said his dad had buried Natalee in the building’s foundation. Days after Kelly and Van der Sloot’s interaction, Van der Sloot left Aruba for Peru.
In a later email, Van der Sloot claimed the information he had given Kelly was “worthless.”
May 30, 2010 – Van der Sloot kills Stephany Flores
Five years to the day after Natalee disappeared, Stephany Flores, a 21-year-old college student, was found beaten to death in Van der Sloot’s hotel room in Lima, Peru.
June 2010 – Van der Sloot arrested for Flores’ murder
In June 2010, Van der Sloot was arrested in Chile and sent to Peru to face murder charges for Flores’ murder.
June 30, 2010 – Grand Jury indicts Van der Sloot on extortion charge
On June 30, 2010, a federal grand jury indicted Van der Sloot on extortion and wire fraud charges for “soliciting money from Natalee Holloway’s mother on promises he would reveal the location of her daughter’s remains in Aruba.”
Jan. 11, 2012 – Van der Sloot pleads guilty to Flores’ murder
On Jan. 11, 2022, Van der Sloot plead guilty to the murder of Flores. At the time, Van der Sloot’s attorney claimed that Van der Sloot “killed Stephany Flores as a result of ‘extreme psychological trauma’ he suffered from the fallout of the 2005 disappearance on the Caribbean island of Aruba of Natalee Holloway.”
Jan. 12, 2012 – Judge declares Natalee legally dead
An Alabama judge signed an order declaring Natalee legally dead six years after her disappearance.
Jan. 13, 2012 – Van der Sloot sentenced on murder charge
Van der Sloot is sentenced to 28 years in prison for Flores’ murder. He will spend these years in Peru.
May 10, 2023 – Peru will allow Van der Sloot to be extradited to Alabama
In May 2023, Peru’s government decides to allow Van der Sloot to be extradited to the United States to face trial for the extortion and wire fraud charges he was indicted on in June of 2010.
June 3, 2023 – Van der Sloot transferred to separate prison while waiting on extradition
Van der Sloot left the prison he was at, the Challapalca prison, to a prison in Lima, Peru while he is waiting to be extradited to Birmingham, Ala.