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Joran van der Sloot to be extradited to US to face charges in Holloway case

A Peruvian governmental decree indicates that once Joran van der Sloot completes his 28-year sentence for the 2010 killing of Stephanie Flores Ramirez, he will be extradited to the United States to face charges from an indictment handed down in the state of Alabama.

The Associated Press reported (via Yahoo News) March 10 that, according to a published decree in the South American nation's official gazette, van der Sloot will be sent to to the U. S. to face charges in a case where it is alleged that he defrauded the family of Natalee Holloway, a young woman who went missing on the island of Aruba in 2005 and whose body has to this day never been found. Long thought to have had something to do with her disappearance, exacerbated by van der Sloot's entitled attitude and various statements made by the young Dutchman after Holloway went missing, he apparently approached members of Holloway's family and offered to take them to the missing woman's place of burial -- for a sum of money. The money was paid, van der Sloot went to South America, and the location where Natalee Holloway was supposedly buried had turned out to hold nothing of interest.

Yet, even with the official decree, Joran van der Sloot will have to serve the 28-year sentence meted out to him as justice for his role in the death of Stephanie Ramirez before he can be extradited. His extradition will occur at the earliest in 2038.

Killed on the fifth anniversary of the disappearance of Natalee Holloway, Stephanie Ramirez, the daughter of a famed race car driver and a promising biology student, had befriended van der Sloot after his arrival in Peru. The two were seen in video footage gathered from a local casino, where Ramirez apparently won a good deal of money. After going to his Lima hotel room, police believe van der Sloot decided to kill Ramirez for the money she had won. In a confession he later retracted, van der Sloot said he had killed the young woman in a fit of rage when he discovered her on his laptop reading a story on the Natalee Holloway case. Days later, after an international warrant was issued for his arrest, van der Sloot was arrested in neighboring Chile and extradited to Peru.

He had been gambling in Chilean casinos. Authorities believe he used the cash winnings of Ramirez and her credit cards, taken from her lifeless body, to finance his gambling.

The incident galvanized Peru. Headlines concerning Joran van der Sloot and the killing swept the planet. The Natalee Holloway connection, not to mention the timing of the horrible killing of Stephanie Ramirez, became a common underlying theme in the media coverage. Van der Sloot returned to center stage in the media cycle, every movement and word a cause for study, speculation, parsing, and reporting -- much the same as had occurred when Natalee Holloway went missing and his role in the events of last known hours surrounding the teen's time of disappearance was revealed (most of which was a product of his own volition via testimonies, depositions, and interviews). She was last seen leaving an Aruba bar with him and he is believed to be the last person to have seen the Alabama teen alive.

Still, all speculation aside, van der Sloot was never tried with regard to Natalee Holloway.

Van der Sloot pleaded guilty to the murder of Stephanie Flores Ramirez on Jan. 11, 2012. He was sentenced on Jan. 13.

Holloway was declared dead by an Alabama court on Jan. 12, 2012.

Once extradited, future prosecutors will attempt to show that Van der Sloot accepted $25,000 in cash from Holloway's family in 2010 as an alleged payment for leading a lawyer representing the family to the teen's body. The body, of course, was not recovered -- nor was there even a body at the described location. Joran van der Sloot reportedly used some of the money to make his way to Peru where he was intent on gambling.

Natalee Holloway's body has never been found.

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