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Natalee Holloway Suspect`s Father Dies Suddenly in Aruba

Aired February 11, 2010 - 20:00:00   ET


NANCY GRACE, HOST: Breaking news tonight in the disappearance of Alabama beauty Natalee Holloway, missing off her high school senior trip, Aruba. Aruban police couldn`t or wouldn`t make a case against judge`s son Joran Van Der Sloot in the disappearance of Holloway, even after high-tech secret surveillance catches him describing the night the Alabama beauty was killed.

Bombshell tonight. Van Der Sloot`s father, long believed to have been key in the cover-up for his son, dead. Judge Paulus Van Der Sloot collapses dead on a tennis court at a swanky Aruban resort. Van Der Sloot escaped further police scrutiny even after a witness says he spots Van Der Sloot and daddy searching around a pond late the night Natalee goes missing, Joran Van Der Sloot soaking wet, missing a shoe. With a positive ID on the judge`s Jeep, still no arrest. But now, without Daddy pulling strings and thinking, even talking for him, is Joran Van Der Sloot such a loose cannon, the truth will finally win out?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Will the Holloway case be reopened now that Joran Van Der Sloot`s dad is dead?

DAVE HOLLOWAY, NATALEE`S FATHER: Paulus Van Der Sloot should have been a man. He should have stepped forward in the beginning. He should have talked to Joran that night. They should have admitted that something went wrong.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Could this be a major breakthrough in finding out what happened to Natalee?

DAVE HOLLOWAY: (INAUDIBLE) guy. He told his son and the other boys to keep quiet and don`t say anything. He indicated the -- No case, no body -- or no body, no case.

BETH HOLLOWAY, NATALEE`S MOTHER: Paul Van Der Sloot has changed his story. He admitted to us on the night of the 31st that he picked them up at 4:00 AM. And then when I was at his home one day, and he changed the time to 11:00 PM on the 29th. I mean, you just don`t do that. A grown man cannot keep changing the times if he has nothing to hide or no involvement.

DAVE HOLLOWAY: I remember the day I met with Paul at the prison. And the thing that stuck out in my mind was I asked him all the questions, why he hid from the news media. And the last question that I had was, was he involved, and he said no. He said, Dave, I can understand your position, but you`ve got to understand mine. Joran`s my son and I`ll do everything I can to protect him. And I believe it.


GRACE: Good evening. I`m Nancy Grace. I want to thank you for being with us. Bombshell tonight. Joran Van Der Sloot`s father, long believed to have been key in the cover-up for his son, dead. Now, without Daddy pulling strings, thinking, even talking for him, is Van Der Sloot such a loose cannon, the truth will finally win out?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was Joran Van Der Sloot`s biggest defender. Now Paulus Van Der Sloot has suddenly died in Aruba, potentially revving up the Natalee Holloway investigation.

BETH HOLLOWAY: I fully believe that he knows exactly where Natalee`s body is. I do know that Paul Van Der Sloot -- yes. Yes. I know he knows.

DAVE HOLLOWAY: Nothing was done right in the beginning on this thing, otherwise we`d have an answer.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Also, at the time Natalee Holloway went missing, Paulus Van Der Sloot was training as a judge and was reportedly influential within the Aruban establishment and legal community.

DAVE HOLLOWAY: ... meeting with the prosecutor, Did you search Paulus`s home? And she said no. And I said, Why? She said, Because he wouldn`t let us.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Paulus Van Der Sloot have many friends within the police department. He had many friends within the Department of Justice. And he had many friends -- and he was friendly with all the judges in Aruba.

BETH HOLLOWAY: It was kind of frightening to us to hear about his connections, with the father having control of the security cameras on the island because after all, the Holiday Inn security cameras were not working that night that the suspects took Natalee.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In a television interview, Joran Van Der Sloot says his father gave Aruban police $50,000 as a bribe to look the other way, a statement Joran Van Der Sloot has since said was a lie.

PAULUS VAN DER SLOOT, JORAN`S FATHER: I`m not hiding anything. I`m telling the whole truth, nothing but the truth. (INAUDIBLE) spoke all this to Joran to tell the truth.


GRACE: Of course, that`s Paulus Van Der Sloot, the judge, on CBS "Early Show" back in 2005, insisting his son, Joran, had nothing to do with Holloway`s disappearance. Second verse, same as the first.

We are taking your calls live. Straight out to Ellie Jostad, our chief editorial producer. Ellie, tell me the circumstances surrounding Van Der Sloot`s death.

ELLIE JOSTAD, NANCY GRACE PRODUCER: Well, Nancy, apparently, he was playing tennis just last night. As far as we know, no previous health problems, no other conditions that we`re aware of. He apparently had a heart attack, collapsed on the tennis courts. Emergency personnel were not able to revive him.

GRACE: Ellie, we were just showing a shot -- there you go. There`s Paulus -- judge Paulus Van Der Sloot running, running from the camera, trying to get into his car.

Refresh our recollection, Ellie. Just take it from the top. What was his perceived, alleged involvement in a cover-up for his son, Joran Van Der Sloot, the former suspect in the disappearance of Alabama beauty Natalee Holloway?

JOSTAD: Well, Nancy, Paulus Van Der Sloot always claimed that his son, Joran Van Der Sloot, had nothing to do with Natalee Holloway`s disappearance. But police initially believed that he may have been involved in the cover-up. As a matter of fact, just about a month after Natalee Holloway went missing, Paulus Van Der Sloot was arrested, taken into custody. Three days later, he was released. They said there was no evidence.

He later actually sued the Aruban government, won a settlement of $30,000 for false arrest. But Joran Van Der Sloot himself said in interviews, which he later took back -- he`s always making statements, taking them back. But he did claim at one point that he told his father what really happened that night. He told his father that he had sold Natalee Holloway to a man on the beach who wanted a sex slave. He says that his father told him, Keep your mouth shut.

GRACE: Now, that was a public statement that he allegedly made -- well, he did make it on national television. And he was very, very detailed about selling Natalee Holloway and that his father told him, That`s a very, very serious crime and you`ve got to keep your mouth shut. Joran Van Der Sloot said that he told that story to his father, to his lawyers, and to a particular teacher that he trusted.

We are taking your calls. What, if anything, does this mean in the ongoing search for the truth in the disappearance of Alabama beauty Natalee Holloway?

Out to the lines. Heather in New York. Hi, Heather.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi, Nancy Grace. How are you?

GRACE: I am great. Thank you for asking. Although I was up all night with little Lucy. She`s been sick, but she`s on the mend today. What`s your question, dear?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, your babies are beautiful, let me just say that. Now that the father is dead, is the evidence that he once covered up going to be revealed? I mean, I know he actually said in a taped interview, No body, no case. And then we have the undercover cop, who found -- Joran said to him that she had a seizure and he just left her there, and then a friend picked her up. I mean, is this stuff going to be uncovered now that he`s passed on?

GRACE: That is an excellent question, and we will unleash the lawyers. In the meantime, Rosie, if you would, pull up the video that we have of Joran Van Der Sloot, the son, Joran Van Der Sloot, where he is in that vehicle. After months of secret surveillance by Dutch reporters, recall Joran Van Der Sloot finally in confidence told what he thought to be a fellow dope dealer what really happened that night. You`ve got it ready, Rosie? OK, let`s take a listen. Take a listen to Joran Van Der Sloot while he thinks no one is watching.


JORAN VAN DER SLOOT, SUSPECT IN NATALEE HOLLOWAY DISAPPEARANCE (through translator): I`m telling you honestly, I know what happened to that girl.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): What happened, then, Joran? Morta -- she`s dead, isn`t she.

JORAN VAN DER SLOOT (through translator): Of course. The ocean`s big, isn`t it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Of course, the sea is big, man.

JORAN VAN DER SLOOT (through translator): I just think that I`ve been incredibly lucky that she`s never been found because of they found that girl, I`d been in deep (EXPLETIVE DELETED)



UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): She`s just lying still?

JORAN VAN DER SLOOT (through translator): Still. Still. She`s not doing anything. He says -- he says, What happened? I said, I don`t know either, man.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Did you try to resuscitate her?

JORAN VAN DER SLOOT (through translator): Of course! I tried everything, man. I tried to shake her. I was shaking the bitch. I was, like -- I was, like, What`s wrong with you, man? I almost wanted to cry. Why does this (EXPLETIVE DELETED) have to happen to me? I said to him, This isn`t possible.


GRACE: Why does this have to happen to me? That video is from ABC`s "20/20," where Joran Van Der Sloot describes in his own words the night of the disappearance of Natalee Holloway.

Again, we are taking your calls, and we`re going to answer Heather`s question. But first, joining me right now from Meridien, Mississippi, is Dave Holloway. This is Natalee`s father. Dave, it`s great to talk to you again.

DAVE HOLLOWAY (via telephone): Good evening, Nancy.

GRACE: What`s your reaction to the news that daddy Van Der Sloot is dead, collapsing on a resort`s tennis court?

DAVE HOLLOWAY: You know, I really didn`t have any initial reaction, Nancy, other than the fact that, you know, it`s -- two sides of it. You know, you`ve got to feel for some of the innocent people that he has affected, you know, certainly, his immediate family, but a bunch of the other people on the island, as well as us. And you know, secondly, now that he`s not controlling the police investigation, leniency towards what the judges write (ph) and then his own son, you know, maybe there`s hope that someone will talk.

GRACE: With me is Natalee`s father, Dave Holloway, who did everything in his power to try to find his daughter. Can you imagine your child going away on a senior trip, well chaperoned, a great bunch of kids, great chaperones, monitored, and then you get the word everybody came back but your daughter?

Dave Holloway, what do you believe judge Paulus Van Der Sloot`s involvement was in covering up for his son?

DAVE HOLLOWAY: My thought (INAUDIBLE) is that once Joran was taken into custody and gave his initial deposition, I think that`s where Paul Van Der Sloot came into action as far as changing up the statements and then doing what he had to do to get his son off.


DAVE HOLLOWAY: I just couldn`t believe what I was seeing, you know? You know, you almost -- as a father, you know, you just feel like jumping through the TV set. You know, you just can`t believe that a person would stoop this low and have no lack of respect or remorse. I mean, he`s -- he has literally destroyed that island. And to top it all off, he laughed and said he was going to cash in.




BETH HOLLOWAY: Paulus Van Der Sloot has changed his story.

DAVE HOLLOWAY: Something`s -- something`s wrong here.

BETH HOLLOWAY: When I hear how he`s placing all the blame on either myself or tourism being low, if that`s the case, how everything is Natalee`s fault...

DAVE HOLLOWAY: I think he was grasping for straws and trying to point the finger somewhere else.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Young people just don`t die from drinking too much.

GRACE: No history that she had used drugs that night, no history of epilepsy.

BETH HOLLOWAY: He has just totally, totally dragged us all through hell.

DAVE HOLLOWAY: He`s tried to avoid this justice system for a long time, and you know, it -- I`m afraid it`s going to come back and haunt him.

With a meeting with the prosecutor, Did you search Paulus`s home? And she said no. And I said, Why? She said, Because he wouldn`t let us. I`m going, I can`t -- he was a suspect. They brought him in for -- held him for two days. I just don`t understand it. That`s what I`m talking about. Nothing was done right.

BETH HOLLOWAY: We just have to, though, keep going because the only way we will get justice for Natalee is if we do keep going. I mean, if we give up, absolutely nothing will happen.

There was a time when I -- I just -- I felt like, How can I continue to do this? And where am I going and what am I -- what am I getting? I just felt like I wasn`t getting anywhere. But you know what? All that steady, constant, every-day steps that we took, each one was well worth it because look where we are today. I never thought I`d see this time come to where you and I would be sitting here with such absolutely amazing revelations and informations, you know, coming from Joran himself.


GRACE: We are taking your calls live. Let`s unleash the lawyers and answer Heather in New York`s question. Join us tonight, felony prosecutor out of the Atlanta jurisdiction Eleanor Odom, also with us. Also with us, defense attorney Eleanor -- Peter Odom, and Randy Kessler, well known in the Atlanta jurisdiction. Thank you for being with us.

Eleanor, Heather in New York`s question was, because of the death of Joran Van Der Sloot`s father, the sudden and unexpected death, what does that mean to the case?

ELEANOR ODOM, PROSECUTOR: What I`m hoping as a prosecutor is that maybe somebody who was scared to come out and speak earlier maybe will come forward now that he is dead and maybe isn`t influencing somebody.

GRACE: To you, Peter Odom. True, he may have taken secrets to the grave, as many people believe. But the fact that he has now passed away, there`s no more privilege with many of the things that he has said. Do you think it`s going to help or hurt the case?

PETER ODOM, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, frankly, Nancy, I don`t think it`s going to have any effect on the case. I don`t think that there was any privilege to begin with. There`s certainly no father-son privilege. This case was dead on arrival, so to speak, and has been for years.

GRACE: With the lawyers.

PETER ODOM: There`s never been any...

GRACE: With the lawyers. And also, he was a judge, Peter Odom.


GRACE: And many people believe that he pulled strings to get this case assigned to a friend that was also a judge.

PETER ODOM: That may be, but nobody is going to come forward and say, Hey, by the way, I acted corruptly in this case, let me now tell the truth. What`s done is done, and this case is not going to go anywhere, and it wouldn`t have anyway, Nancy.

GRACE: What about it, Randy Kessler?

RANDY KESSLER, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I think Paul did his job as a father, as a lawyer. He protected his son, kept him out of harm`s way for a long time. Time is on this defendant`s side. Memories fade, witnesses disappear, and there`s been no body. I think his father did a good job if he was protecting his son.

GRACE: Put Kessler up.

KESSLER: I didn`t say it was ethical. I didn`t say I agree with it.

GRACE: I don`t believe I asked you anything else. Randy, you have children, don`t you?

KESSLER: Absolutely. Got a beautiful daughter.

GRACE: And in light of the fact that Dave Holloway is with us tonight, Natalee`s father -- I couldn`t see you when you said Paulus Van Der Sloot did a good job in covering up for his son. Do you want to rephrase that in any way?

KESSLER: Sure. If that`s what his intent was, was to protect his son and keep his son out of jail, then he accomplished that. I wasn`t making a judgment on it. I don`t think it was good and I certainly don`t like it and I don`t approve of it. But if that was his goal, he achieved his goal.

GRACE: Let`s go out to Sheryl McCollum, crime analyst and the director of the cold case squad, Pine Lake PD. Weigh in, Sheryl.

SHERYL MCCOLLUM, CRIME ANALYST: You know, Nancy, this case is just so aggravating to me. But here`s what I want to make very clear. It`s not just a few police officers that may or may not have gotten some payment. It`s not one judge. It is every single police officer on that island. It is every single judge at this point, and it`s every single DA on that island that won`t bring this case forward. Van Der Sloot has said he sold her in the sex trade. He said he threw her in the ocean. How many times does this person have to confess before something is done?

GRACE: You know, out to Jean Casarez, legal correspondent with In Session, joining us out of New York. Jean, especially in light of that undercover video we just showed of Joran Van Der Sloot essentially confessing he was there at the time of her death, how she was shaking at the time of her death, I still don`t understand how Aruban prosecutors did not proceed.

JEAN CASAREZ, IN SESSION: Well, so much has come out of the mouth of Joran, you`re right. But independent of that, the justice minister of Aruba had come out saying that he believed the early aspects of the investigation were tainted. They didn`t investigate. They didn`t interview Joran for over 10 days to protect Paul, that that was the basis of it all. Now that Paul is gone, that protection isn`t needed anymore.


DAVE HOLLOWAY: I think his pattern is the same pattern, (INAUDIBLE) and get his way out of it. I just hope that he comes clean. He`s got an account to settle, and I hope he settles it on this earth this time. If he doesn`t, you know, God bless him.




DAVE HOLLOWAY: I met him the night I got here. He`s sickening to me. He`s a chicken. If he has nothing to hide, why is he running to his car? He`s -- he makes my stomach turn.

BETH HOLLOWAY: Paulus Van Der Sloot has changed his story.

DAVE HOLLOWAY: I wanted to dig into -- into Paulus Van Der Sloot.

BETH HOLLOWAY: You just don`t do that. A grown man cannot keep changing the times if he has nothing to hide or no involvement.

DAVE HOLLOWAY: Paulus Van Der Sloot should have been a man. He should have stepped forward in the beginning. He should have talked to Joran that night. They should have admitted that something went wrong, and we could have gone on with our lives.


GRACE: Breaking news tonight in the search of Alabama beauty Natalee Holloway. At a swanky tennis resort, the father of Joran Van Der Sloot, judge Paulus Van Der Sloot, collapses and ties. So far throughout this investigation, he has done the thinking, even the talking for his son, Joran Van Der Sloot, known to be a loose cannon. But now without Daddy pulling the strings, will truth finally win out?

Speaking of Joran Van Der Sloot, where in the world is Joran Van Der Sloot? Last we knew, he was in Thailand. Where was he at the time of his father`s death? Well, this is the last we know of his whereabouts. Take a listen.


JORAN VAN DER SLOOT: Well, I mean, he offering you $15,000 to dance, and I understand you tell me that you have school that you have to finish. I understand. And you can tell me, OK, after your school, we talk about it again?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And how long I have to dance for? One hour, two hours?

JORAN VAN DER SLOOT: No, like a 10-hour day.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE) some money (INAUDIBLE) maybe we can do that, like $15,000 a month?

JORAN VAN DER SLOOT: OK, but -- but look what you have to do for that. For here, you have to shake your (EXPLETIVE DELETED). That`s all you have to do. I -- if I can shake my (EXPLETIVE DELETED) for $50,000, I`ll shake my (EXPLETIVE)!



GRACE: That`s from a Dutch TV investigative where Joran Van Der Sloot was secretly videotaped with a hidden camera trying to encourage Thai women, young women, to dance for money and more. Such a fine young man.

Out to you Bethany Marshall, psychoanalyst and author of "Deal Breakers." Weigh in, Bethany.

BETHANY MARSHALL, PSYCHOANALYST: Well, it seems for him that sexual excitement and exploiting women seem to go hand in hand. We saw it with Natalee Holloway, and we see it here.

But I think -- you keep using the words "loose cannon," and you`re absolutely right, Nancy. The way he`s a loose cannon is that he wants to brag about this crime. He confuses infamy with being famous. He thinks that this is exciting and that we want to hear his stories. Just like Scott Peterson used to go and look out over the bay where Laci was, there was a form of reliving the crime as if it was exciting. That`s what Joran is going to do, and that`s going to be his eventual undoing. He`s not just a liar, he`s a braggart.

GRACE: When we come back, joining us, Dave Holloway, Natalee`s father. We now learn that Joran Van Der Sloot`s father, Paulus Van Der Sloot, has collapsed dead.



UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: The Van Der Sloots are a family under fire. Son Joran Van Der Sloot -- he was a star student and athlete at Aruba`s international school and his father, Paul, deputy judge, arrested then released as part of the same investigation.

The Van Der Sloots are a middle class Dutch family, according to islanders, quiet and well respected. The wife and mother Anita was distraught after her husband was detained but was standing by her men.

ANITA VAN DER SLOOT, MOTHER OF JORAN VAN DER SLOOT: I believe in my husband. I believe in my son. I believe in my family. And I know it all comes right. It all will be fine.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: When police arrested Paul Van Der Sloot, prosecutors initially said they suspected he may have helped son Joran cover up what he was doing on the night Natalee disappeared.

Aruba`s chief prosecutor Karen Janssen spelled out what led them to pull Van Der Sloot.

KAREN JANSSEN, ARUBA CHIEF PROSECUTOR: They were speaking about the situation, that if you don`t have a body, there is no case.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: But under interrogation, say officials, he came up with an explanation.

JANSSEN: He said I was talking generally spoken.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Natalee`s family was left reeling.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, it was a devastating blow to us.


NANCY GRACE, HOST: We are taking your calls live. Breaking news in the search for Alabama beauty, honor student, Natalee Holloway, who went missing off her senior trip to Aruba.

The former suspect, Joran Van Der Sloot`s father, Paulus Van Der Sloot, the judge, allegedly had covered up for him from the very beginning. But with Paulus Van Der Sloot now dead at age 57, collapsing dead on a tennis court in an Aruban resort, will the truth finally come out?

Joran Van Der Sloot, known to talk about the night Natalee went missing, take a listen.


JORAN VAN DER SLOOT, FORMER SUSPECT IN THE DISAPPEARANCE OF NATALEE HOLLOWAY (Through Translator): I`m telling you, honestly, I know what happened to that girl.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (Through Translator): What happened then, Joran? Morta, she`s dead, isn`t she?

J. VAN DER SLOOT (Through Translator): Of course. The ocean`s big, isn`t it?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (Through Translator): Of course the sea is big, man.

J. VAN DER SLOOT (Through Translator): I just think that I`ve been incredibly lucky that she`s never been found, because if they found that girl, I`d be in deep (EXPLETIVE DELETED).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (Through Translator): She`s just lying still?

J. VAN DER SLOOT (Through Translator): Still, still. She`s not doing anything. He says, what happened? I said, I don`t know either, man?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (Through Translator): Did you try to resuscitate her?

J. VAN DER SLOOT (Through Translator): Of course, I tried everything, man. I tried to shake her. I was shaking the bitch. I was like, what`s wrong with you, man? I almost wanted to cry.

Why does this (EXPLETIVE DELETED) have to happen to me? I said to him, this is impossible.


GRACE: That is ABC "20/20" video where Van Der Sloot describes what he says to know about the disappearance of Natalee Holloway in shocking detail. When he thought no one was listening.

With me tonight, special guest, Natalee Holloway`s father, Dave Holloway.

Dave, without his daddy there to protect him anymore, to pull the string, get cases assigned to various judges, have a word with police as they are investigating the case, allegedly, we know Joran Van Der Sloot is prone to talk.

There he`s talking to a dope dealer. Then he pops up in Thailand to try and to convince young women to join the sex trade. We know that he gave a national TV interview where he claimed wrongdoing regarding Natalee.

Who`s there to protect him now and filter his stories?

DAVE HOLLOWAY, FATHER OF NATALEE HOLLOWAY (via phone): Well, Nancy, I think that his pattern is that he will continue talking, but will he eventually be arrested and convicted and placed in jail for what he says? And your pessimistic attorneys say no, but, you know, we -- they underestimate our perseverance in the initial few days when we arrived on the island.

And they made a decision to attempt to cover up the case. And if we had thrown our arms up and went on home, well, you know, they would have been successful. But, you know, we`re 4 1/2 years into it and none of us have given up and we`ll continue to seek out answers.

We`re a lot further along in the process than we were the first week. But whether we get the justice Natalee deserves, that`s the ultimate question. But we`re certainly not going to quit. And if I do quit, everyone else will quit. So that`s not the object.

GRACE: You know what Dave? It really is on you and Beth, of course. If you were to quit then everyone would quit.

Dave Holloway is with us tonight, Natalee`s father.

Dave Holloway, how do you believe the cover-up took place?

HOLLOWAY: You know, when Beth arrived on the island, you know, Paulus is a judge in training. He knows all the rules and he`s a lawyer as well. And I think they made a decision, either that night or in the coming days to, you know, help their son out.

And you know I think he`s -- he believed his son had a promising career and he saw all that coming to an end and made that decision at that point in time to break the law and get this thing covered up.

Otherwise, if it would have been any other person, I believe, they would have went ahead and turned their son in and laid it all out on the table, but that`s not what happened.

GRACE: Dave Holloway, isn`t it true that in the day -- the immediate days after Natalee went missing, Joran Van Der Sloot and his father Paulus were already lawyered up with defense attorneys?

Nobody had even really pointed the finger at him yet. And his father had already arranged a slew of attorneys for him.

HOLLOWAY: They already had attorneys in place and were also practicing their drop-off story at the Holiday Inn. And they knew that arrests were imminent. And I always say this, if it hadn`t been for the news media pushing the fact that the two security guards that were initially arrested as a ploy for this cover-up, these guys may have gotten off scot-free.

You know they still haven`t served true justice, but they may have never been arrested so.

GRACE: You know, Dave, a lot of people forgot about that. That a lot of people were happy to sit back and let two security guards take the rap for Natalee`s disappearance, who were completely innocent.

And if you take a look at that, given what we know about Joran Van Der Sloot, not only avoiding the truth about Natalee, but allowing other people to take the fall is horrible.

Of course those were allegations. Joran Van Der Sloot, a former suspect in the case.

Joining me right now, a very special guest, managing director and publisher of "Diario" magazine, Jossy Mansur, joining us.

Josie, thank you for being with us. What can you tell us about the death of Paulus Van Der Sloot?

JOSSY MANSUR, MANAGING DIRECTOR AND PUBLISHER, DIARIO: Well, I think that it will open the case again. I think that it combines with a new government that we have. A new minister of justice. And everything seems to be pointing into the direction of the case will move forward from here on. Yes.

GRACE: But how will Paulus -- Judge Paulus Van Der Sloot`s death affect the case moving forward?

MANSUR: Well, not only the fact that it`s moving forward but he will have absolutely no more influence to guide whatever the investigation -- whatever the investigators are busy with. He has absolutely no contacts anymore with the judges that may again in the future with Joran`s family and before them in the tribunal.

And many things will change now with his death.

GRACE: Under the law there -- it`s a Dutch law -- practiced in Aruba, can Joran Van Der Sloot be taken back into custody if new and credible evidence arises?

MANSUR: Of course he can. Immediately.

GRACE: With me is Jossy Mansur, director and publisher of "Diario."

Jossy, what more do you know about his actual death? Where did he die?

MANSUR: He died on a tennis court in Piera del Sol (ph). That`s a very lush and exclusive section of the island where you have $1 million homes. The retired people -- I mean foreigners that own huge mansions there.

He was playing tennis there and apparently his heart gave up. He collapsed. They brought the ambulance. They rushed him to the hospital. They worked on him for quite a while, but there was nothing they could do anymore. He was dead.

GRACE: Everyone, we are taking your calls as soon as we get back, but as we go to break, tonight`s "N.G. Family Album." Now here are photos of the twins.

Now this was this past week. They have tricycles and mommy was trying to push both of them up a hill. That didn`t go very well. Here we are back at McDonald`s at the play station. Having fun.

And now to your photos. Here`s Tennessee friend, tiny crime fighter Brianna on her third birthday. She watches our show every night with mom, Christine. And each night, this little child Brianna says a prayer for our missing children.

Connecticut friends, 16-month-old Claire who has watched this show every night since her mommy was pregnant. Claire loves the show so much she will only speak during commercial breaks.


GRACE: Thank you, sweet little girl. And thank you, friends, for sharing your photos with us.



UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Breaking news in the Natalee Holloway investigation. Former suspect Joran Van Der Sloot`s father has died. Judge in training Paulus Van Der Sloot collapsed suddenly in Aruba while playing tennis. He was unable to be resuscitated.

His son Joran formerly suspected of being involved in the disappearance of Alabama teen Natalee Holloway who went missing on a school trip to Aruba. Questions about the investigations swirling.

HOLLOWAY: I want them to go back from the beginning. I want the statements from the two uniformed officers that were there with me that night that spent two hours with us, at least their written report that they had that night. And I want them to dig into Paulus Van Der Sloot. And he`s involved in this and I want them to dig and dig and find out more information.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: What secrets did Van Der Sloot know? What information will he take to the grave?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Joran and Paul have done this to themselves. They have -- they have -- they`ve done the lies all along. You know, if they would have just come forward from the beginning, never changed their story, you know, we wouldn`t have these suspicions.


GRACE: Breaking news tonight in the search for Alabama beauty and honor student, Natalee Holloway, who went missing on her high school senior trip. Great group of children, great group of chaperons, plenty of chaperons to go around. She was the only one that didn`t come back from Aruba. She has never been seen since.

By his own admission to authorities, Joran Van Der Sloot, the last one to be with her there on the beach, he says he left her on the beach. He tells an entirely different story on secret surveillance video describing how she died.

Then on a national TV interview, he says that he sold her into the sex trade. But now without daddy there to protect him any longer, will the truth finally come out?

To criminal profiler Pat Brown, author of "Killing for Sport," weigh in, Pat Brown.

PAT BROWN, CRIMINAL PROFILER, AUTHOR OF "KILLING FOR SPORT": Well, Nancy, I think the problem is Joran has told a lot of stories. And none of them are true. Because a guy like this is not going to tell the real stories.

He`s going to tell stories that are slightly less awful than the real truth, which is likely that he was raping her and she smothered in the sand. My guess is that then he called daddy and daddy helped him cover it up.

Daddy is gone, so there goes your second guy who knows what`s going on. So there`s only one left. I think they`re going to have trouble unless they can find that body. And the only way they`re going to find something to do with that body is if the body is buried on the property or some remnants of the body are on the property.

And that`s my hope, is maybe there`s some access to the property they didn`t have before that they can go back and look for it.

GRACE: To Dr. Joshua Perper, renown in his field, the chief medical examiner of Broward County, author of "When to Call the Doctor."

Dr. Perper, as always, it is our honor to have you on with us.


GRACE: Following up on what Pat Brown, the criminal profiler has just told us, at this juncture, with the many, many months that have passed, what would you expect to find as far as remains if they had been buried?

PERPER: If the body had been buried, then there would be skeletal remains. If the body was thrown in the ocean, then the likelihood of recovering the remain of bone, it`s virtually nil.

GRACE: To Tammy in Georgia, hi, Tammy.

TAMMY, CALLER FROM GEORGIA: Hi, Nancy. I think you`re a wonderful mother first.

GRACE: Thank you.

TAMMY: And -- you`re welcome. Second of all, I want to know, do you think Joran will finally now mess up now that he doesn`t have daddy to tell him what to say or to do?

GRACE: Tammy in Georgia, I absolutely believe he will. I think that his father has mostly likely kept him out of sight, out of mind. All this time. But Joran Van Der Sloot can`t help but yak and gab and seek attention.

Speaking of where is Joran Van Der Sloot, Jean Casarez, legal correspondent with "In Session," what do you know, Jean?

JEAN CASAREZ, CORRESPONDENT, "IN SESSION": Well, Nancy, I did find out some things today, a source close to the Van Der Sloot family tells me that Joran is in the Netherlands right now and he will be coming back to Aruba for services.

So he will be back to that jurisdiction, Nancy.

GRACE: And unleash the lawyers. Joining us tonight, Eleanor Odom out of Atlanta, Randy Kessler and Peter Odom, as well, all joining us.

Eleanor Odom, it is not beyond the realm of imagination to expect authorities to make some type of move if Joran Van Der Sloot comes home for the funeral.

ELEANOR ODOM, PROSECUTOR: No, not at all, Nancy. And you`ve got to remember, not only do we have his statement, he was placed with Natalee Holloway by other people before her disappearance and her probable death, as well as the Kalpoe brothers who were also in with him, too, in this whole disappearance of Natalee Holloway.

So I think there`s some good evidence to corroborate his statement.

GRACE: Peter Odom, funerals and memorials are tried and true. In fact, the feds are well known for rigging up microphones, hidden surveillance cameras, you name it, at funerals, memorials, grave sites. What do you think?

PETER ODOM, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes. And Joran Van Der Sloot has already told four or five different stories about what happened. So what if he comes and tells a sixth story?

It`s true that you can`t prosecute a case without a body, but you can`t prosecute a case based on admissions and confessions alone. That`s all they`ve got against Joran Van Der Sloot.

GRACE: Hold on, hold on.

P. ODOM: And even his --

GRACE: Hold on.

P. ODOM: Yes.

GRACE: Peter. Peter. Peter. You`re absolutely correct. In the United States. I don`t know if that`s exactly correct in the Netherlands.

Randy Kessler, he`s talking about the fact that if all you have is the confession by the defendant, that`s not enough to go on. But there is some other evidence. There are the Kalpoe brothers. There is video, video of him, Joran Van Der Sloot, leaving a bar with Natalee just before she goes missing. That could be deemed corroboration, Randy Kessler.

RANDY KESSLER, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Right. And you can have 1 percent corroboration. All you need is somewhat -- something to corroborate it. And that`s all it is. And when you -- have that confessions, if any of those confessions come in or him admitting it, that tape gets in front of any jury.

I can`t imagine a jury not giving that severe weight and possibly convicting. I think he`s going to -- he`s going to step in it sooner or later. O.J. stepped in it. Other people stepped in it. He`s going to pay the price sooner or later.

GRACE: Jennifer in California, hi, Jennifer.


GRACE: Yes, you`re on right now, dear. What`s your question? OK, to Francine in New Jersey. Hi, Francine.


GRACE: Hi, dear. What`s your question?

FRANCINE: We love you here in New Jersey and we love the twins.

GRACE: Thank you.

FRANCINE: And please get well soon, Lucy. My question is, do you think Joran Van Der Sloot was given preferential treatment? And what is the usual practice on a missing cases -- missing persons case in Aruba under the law?

I understand he was not taking -- after 10 days, not picked up for 10 days?

GRACE: We`re going to answer your question when we get back. We`re hard against a break and as I go to break, I want to remind you, the Joan Gaeta Lung Cancer Foundation, fighting the number one cancer killer in the world, lung cancer, claiming more lives than breast, colon, prostate, melanoma and kidney cancer combined.

You don`t have to smoke to get lung cancer.

Joan Gaeta, beloved wife, mother of five, teacher, lost her battle with lung cancer, and in her honor, the third annual Dancing for Joan fundraiser for lung cancer research Saturday, Feb. 20, Marietta, Georgia.

For info or to make a donation, go to

And tonight, happy 20th to Georgia friend, Lydia Nelly. A sophomore (INAUDIBLE) majoring in criminology.

Happy birthday, Lydia.



HOLLOWAY: I`m a father, too. And no matter what my -- you know, and I love my son to death, but if he did something wrong, I would stand up to it and we`ll just have to deal with it.


GRACE: To Jossy Mansur, director of "Diario" magazine. How, in answer to the question, Francine in New Jersey, how was Joran Van Der Sloot treated differently than a normal suspect would have been treated?

MANSUR: Well, I can give you one classic example is that his father, Paulus Van Der Sloot, was allowed to sit in on various interrogations. He was allowed to look at the transcripts of his declarations and to make corrections in his own handwriting.

No one else that I know of has ever been granted that kind of a privilege.

GRACE: What about it, Jean Casarez with "In Session"?

CASAREZ: Well, the fact is, in addition to that, and Francine was exactly right from New Jersey, it took 10 days before there was any initial interviews with Joran Van Der Sloot.

Nancy, look at the cases you cover. The initial days are critical. And word spread very quickly that Joran Van Der Sloot was the last person to have seen Natalee Holloway.

GRACE: Not to speak ill of the dead, all right? But let`s just get down to it, Sheryl McCollum, that is B.S., and you know that Judge Paulus Van Der Sloot had something to do with his son not being questioned for 10 days.

SHERYL MCCOLLUM, CRIME ANALYST, DIR. OF COLD CASE SQUAD AT PINE LAKE P.D.: No question. The first 72 hours is critical. They deliberately wait 10 days. All kind of leads have gone at that point.

GRACE: To you, Bethany Marshall. What do you make of Joran Van Der Sloot`s disposition and how will be that be affected by his father`s sudden death?

BETHANY MARSHALL, PSYCHOANALYST, AUTHOR OF "DEALBREAKERS": I think we have to remember that there`s a little kernel of truth in every lie a pathological liar tells.

When Casey Anthony said Caylee was close by, she was. In a body bag. And when Joran says that he sold -- Natalee to the sex trade, he sold her up the river for sex. So we follow the lies. They`re not just tall tales. In the lies are going to be a kernel of truth.

He can`t help himself. He wants to brag to the world.

GRACE: Breaking news tonight in the search for missing Alabama teen Natalee Holloway. The son, Joran Van Der Sloot, the former suspect in this case, headed to Aruba as we speak. His father, Judge Paulus Van Der Sloot, dead at 57.

What will it mean to the case?

Let`s stop and remember Marine Lance Corporal William Spencer, 20, Paris, Tennessee, killed Iraq. Awarded the Silver Star, gave his life, rescuing his commanding officer.

Left studies at Mary State to enlist. Loved fishing, rescuing stray animals, dreamed of playing football at Ohio State, and being a marine biologist. Leaves behind parents Dave and Julia, stepmother Dawn, two brothers, two sisters.

William Spencer, American hero.

Thanks to our guests, but especially to you for being with us. I`ll see you tomorrow night, 8:00 sharp Eastern. And until then, good night, friend.