Video: DNA testing for Aruba suspects

NBC News and news services
updated 7/20/2005 4:20:47 PM ET 2005-07-20T20:20:47

A suspect in the disappearance of an Alabama teenager and two men who had been held in the case were ordered Tuesday to undergo DNA testing, NBC News has learned.

The district attorney ordered the testing for Joran van der Sloot, the 17-year-old in custody, and Deepak and Satish Kalpoe, NBC's Sue Kroll reported. The court will release the reason for the testing Wednesday, Kroll has learned.

Investigators said Monday they would conduct DNA tests on blond hair attached to duct tape that was found along Aruba's coast to see if it came from Natalee Holloway in a possible break to the 6-week-old mystery.

A park ranger found the duct tape while collecting trash Sunday on rocks at Boca Tortuga, an inlet near a series of caves on Aruba's northeast coast, said National Park Ranger Service spokeswoman Dilma Arends.

Boca Tortuga is on the opposite side of Aruba from where the 18-year-old was last seen in public, and her father expressed little hope that the find would yield an important clue.

"We've had a lot of information that turned out false," David Holloway said as he prepared to leave Aruba and return home to Meridian, Miss.

Several strands of hair
The ranger who made the find, Mario Rasmijn, said there were several strands, each about 12 inches long, and that some were light blond and others were dark.

The hair will be sent to the Netherlands for DNA analysis, said police spokesman Edwin Comemencia. Aruba, a Dutch protectorate, doesn't have a lab to conduct the genetic testing.

A separate test will be conducted by the FBI at its lab in Quantico, Va., said FBI spokeswoman Judy Orihuela in Miami.

It was unknown when the results would be disclosed.

Searches by Dutch marines, Aruban police, and some 2,000 volunteers have found no trace of Holloway, of Mountain Brook, Ala., who was last seen in public in the early hours of May 30, at the end of a high school graduation trip to the Caribbean island.

A volunteer group from Dickinson, Texas, that had searched for three weeks left the island Sunday.

Van der Sloot, a Dutch resident of Aruba, has been detained in connection with Holloway's disappearance, but no charges have been filed. The Surinamese Kalpoe brothers — Deepak, 21, and Satish, 18 — had been arrested but were released July 5.

David Holloway said he tried to visit van der Sloot in jail Saturday because "I wanted Joran to meet with me and tell me face to face what happened."

Authorities did not allow the meeting, and Holloway ran into the detained youth's father, a judge in training on the island, outside the jail.

Father-to-father talk
Holloway said he gave the elder van der Sloot, Paul, three books to pass along to his son — the Bible and two Christian inspirational works. It was not immediately known if Joran received the material.

Paul van der Sloot was detained on June 23 for allegedly aiding his son, but released four days later by a judge who ruled there was not enough evidence to hold him.

Outside the jail, the two men exchanged a few words. "I said I was a forgiving person," and the Dutch father's eyes filled with tears, Holloway said.

"He said he understands my situation, that he's a father, too, and that he'll do anything for his son," Holloway said.

Authorities can hold van der Sloot until Sept. 4, when he must be charged or released. Six other men, including the Kalpoes, detained at various times during the investigation have been released.

Also over the weekend, the missing teen's family posted a new reward of $175,000 for her safe return in addition to the $50,000 already offered for a tip to her whereabouts.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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