Van der Sloot remains behind bars in Peru

POSTED: 08/21/11 4:00 PM

LIMA – It is highly unlikely that Dutch murder suspect Joran van der Sloot will be released from prison before he stands trial, Peruvian legal expert Mario Amoretti says.
Van der Sloot is suspected of the murder of Stephany Flores, a 21-year-old student who was found dead in his hotel room in Lima over a year ago. He was arrested in June 2010 and has been in custody since. Under Peruvian law, preventive custody is limited to 18 months.
The Flores family’s lawyer Edward Alvarez had complained that no indictment against Van der Sloot had yet been formulated. He warned that the delay could lead to the suspect being released to await the start of the trial in freedom in Peru.
The Peruvian justice authorities have confirmed that Van der Sloot’s custody can be extended as Amoretti says, but stress that this is not necessary yet. The Public Prosecutor received the file in July and is currently dealing with the case.
Van der Sloot is still suspected of involvement in the disappearance of US teenager Natalee Holloway on 30 May 2005 in Aruba, but he has never been charged, due to lack of evidence. The Flores murder occurred exactly five years after Holloway disappeared.

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