Aruban investigators in the Netherlands again questioned a Dutch college student Friday in the Natalee Holloway disappearance as they sought a court order to detain him as a suspect based on a hidden-camera interview.
Police questioned Joran Van der Sloot for about two hours, and he again denied any role in the May 2005 disappearance of the American teen in the Dutch Caribbean island, the Aruban prosecutor’s office said in a statement. The 20-year-old Van der Sloot was detained previously in the case but was released for insufficient evidence.
Van der Sloot, who was accompanied by a lawyer, claimed he was under the influence of marijuana when he said in a secretly taped video that he was with Holloway when she died and that he had a friend dump her body at sea, the prosecutor’s office said.
He was not taken into custody.
Last week, a judge in Aruba denied a prosecution request to detain Van der Sloot based on his statements in the video, surreptitiously recorded in installments inside a Range Rover by a man working for a Dutch television crime reporter.
Aruban authorities appealed that ruling on Tuesday and expect a decision next week.
Holloway, an 18-year-old from Mountain Brook, Ala., was last seen leaving a bar in the Aruban capital Oranjestad with Van der Sloot and two Surinamese brothers on the final night of a high school graduation trip to the island. Extensive searches have found no trace of her.
Van der Sloot has denied to authorities any involvement in her death. But in the video — first broadcast on Dutch television — he says she collapsed on the beach after they left the bar and that he called a friend to dump her body at sea.
Aruba’s top prosecutor has called the video “impressive” and said he believes it is admissible in court. But Van der Sloot’s lawyers insist it was not a confession and their client told a Dutch news program that he lied on the videotape.
This developing story will be updated.