Google Earth offers new clues, raises questions in Natalee Holloway case

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A possible new lead in the disappearance of Natalee Holloway? It's been almost 10 years to the day that she vanished in Aruba.

Jurriën de Jong says he is something the case has never had: an eyewitness. Actually de Jong isn't new -- he's been speaking out for years.

In 2008, he even called Natalee's father Dave Holloway and said, "'She's on land and I know where her body is hidden.'"  Dave Holloway said, "My initial thought was, 'This is another crazy.'"

De Jong has gone to the police numerous times, and has even given a sworn statement.

Here's his version: On the night Natalee Holloway vanished, de Jong says he was doing something illegal at a construction site, he won't say what, but around 2 a.m. he says he saw a young man, who he later identifies as Joran van der Sloot, chasing a young woman into the site.

"I thought first in a playful way like, 'Oh, I'm going to get you,'"de Jong said.

He says the couple disappeared into a small section of construction, "but after five minutes I'd say, he came out with her in his arms," de Jong said.

And it was what he saw the man do that told de Jong the woman was dead: "And you know he really slammed her...and then you don't start hiding this person in the crawl space."

Joran van der Sloot is serving 28 years in Peru for the murder of a young woman. He's never been charged in the Natalee Holloway case.

Now, de Jong's testimony seems to practically solve the mystery of what happened to Natalee, and nearly 10 years after she disappeared, authorities have finally got around to investigating it.

"I don't know if he's lying. I only say his statement can't be true," said Aruba prosecutor Eric Olthof.

That construction site in 2005 is now a 12-story hotel owned by Marriott.  The prosecutor says Marriott informed him at the time Natalee vanished there was no construction.

"When there's no construction, Natalee Holloway can't be buried in the crawl space under the foundation," Olthof said.

That certainly seems true, but Dave Holloway thinks that Marriott could possibly be wrong about those construction dates.

Holloway lead a number of searches for his daughter on Aruba and he remembers the place.

"I was there on June 1st and there was definitely construction in that area. June 1st 2005," Holloway said.

A Google Earth view from June 2005, a short time after Natalee vanished, appears to show a construction site and the fuzzy shapes of structures.

When asked for clarification, Marriott issued a statement making no mention of the building, saying only, "As we have done all along, we cooperate fully with authorities whenever they are conducting an official investigation."

"What he is describing in his story matches what's physically there at the time. I'm thinking this could be something and that's something that really needs to be looked at closer," Holloway said.

Holloway wants a search, but authorities say that's not going to happen.

"That's useless to search there with a cadaver dog or drilling or whatever. One thing will be sure: she's not lying there. She can't be lying there," Olthof said.

Because he said that would give false hope to both the family and the many people that have followed this story and he says she simply is not there.



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  • James Costas

    My wife and I vacationed in Aruba in March 2005. We stayed at the Marriott hotel and there WAS construction going on at that time. Marriott was building a vacation resort next to the hotel. This could be a true story. For the sake of Natalee Holoway’s family, someone needs to investigate this story not dismiss it!

  • April

    My Heart goes out to the Holloway family. Many years ago I had written online to a site that was asking help in locating Natalee. I gave them details of what i had seen yet nobody responded so I knew they thought I was just another crazed individual….I have never been overseas . Yet this investigation and the pain this family is going through reached deeply within my spirit. It still does… I in my efforts to seek answers have had visions of where Natalee lies undetected.. Iam not a Pschic.. nor am I a unstable individual..Iam a Child of God….. I just desire to help this family bring her home and to find closure .. It amazes me now 10 years later that when David was told recently, Natalee’s body was buried on land it brought back when i wrote they were looking in the wrong area.. she is not at sea…. that I in my horrible visions back in that time my instincts have once again revisit the visions I had saw.. Please Mr. Holloway.. I had visions of Natalee being thrown into an already Dug out grave site that another individual was to be buried in the following day ..or close to the next day.. It was prepared for another person.. Being it was prepared nobody would have noticed and looked down it prior to there service.. Why would they?? who would need to do that?? Her body in my strong visuals show me she lie underneath someone’s loved ones casket… in burial grounds close to the judges home.. or near where she was last seen…I have no clue if one exist near where he lived but I believe records could be found marking a 3 day period of another loved one’s demise and Natalee remains can be found… I also believe that the statement nobody will ever find a hair on her head holds true.. and this is exactly why…In my heart I once again can not sit here when Its so piercing and strong in My spirit…I do not know why … I don’t understand why God showed me these things………… Possibly because I felt all the pain … and felt helpless in comforting you and your family .. I don’t know.. .. I remember seeing a picture of your ex wife in Aruba way after i had written in.. she was standing near a grave site on a hillside.. a white cross behind her.. My Heart sank… I do not know how to reach you or I would have a long time ago..I just truly believed that my letter years ago would reach you and would not be blown off…but it went ignored…. Once again I need to Trust God that someone ..somehow will get this message to you. I know in my heart You will find your daughter… And bring her justice… and bring you and yours the closure you need in your life.. God is with you..

    • Michele Artman

      You know April it is ironic that I read your post as I too believe that Natalie is buried with someone else and I too had wrote a coment about it years ago suggesting that they should check and see who was buried around that time. I did not have a vision like you but there was a case around the same time where a funeral director had committed a murder and hid the body by putting it undeneath another body in a casket and buried it. I believe Joran’s father played a role in the cover-up because he had connections. I can only hope that one day Natalie’s family gets the answers they deserve. Joran is a psycho-path who takes pleasure in torturing her Mother Beth.

  • Angela

    natale was a promiscuous girl, always was, all through high school, I knew her through mutual friends and was not surprised one bit when she went off with a guy and ended up missing. She didn’t deserve to die, but if you live by the sword you die by the sword. She was into all sorts of things, she was not the perfect angel people are making her out to be. She always had risky behavior, always. Parties, going off with guys, her parents act like she was a saint, she was far from it.

    • Whitney

      Sinner or Saint, they should determine if Natalee is under that building. Her family needs closure, as would anyone else’s family that has experienced such a tragedy.

  • Lee

    no one knows where she is there or not, and the only way is to look. I feel this country is lacking what is needed in this situation, If it was one of there children I am sure they would knock that entire building to find there child. And the fact that google earth was able to prove there were some construction buildings etc in place, this man I feel saw something. And why not look? If there is nothing there prove there is nothing there. I travel and I will never go anywhere that doesn’t help you in this situation. In fact I would stay away from that place. Seems they only want money and don’t care about people that tour there country. Maybe because of there not wanting to do do a search, more people need to stay away from there

  • Cary

    I think the Marriot needs to get involved. It is their property. If it was my property I would want to know. We have a timeshare and we frequent that Marriott. And now I’m debating standing outside with picket signs next trip. So messed up this case is, so many secrets.

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