New police, FBI search launched for missing Alabama teen in Aruba

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

ORANJESTAD, Aruba -- Police joined by two FBI bloodhounds launched a new search on a beach near a Marriott Hotel on Tuesday for a missing Alabama teen after a former security guard alleged that one of three youths seen with her had lied to police.

Antonius "Mickey" John, who was released Monday, said he was detained in a cell adjacent to one of the young men and that the two talked.

John, 30, said Deepak Kalpoe told him that he, his younger brother and their Dutch friend never returned to the Holiday Inn the morning of May 30, the day Natalee Holloway disappeared.

"All three of those boys know what happened to her," Holloway's mother said Sunday.

On Tuesday police cordoned off several blocks in front of the Marriott and a swampy area beside it, and government spokesman Ruben Trapenberg confirmed it was another search for Holloway. A couple of the teen's family members arrived, and fire trucks began pumping water from the swampy area.

One murder and six rapes were recorded last year on Aruba. This year there have been two murders and three rapes.

"The whole beach area is a place where couples go," said Tourism Authority managing director Myrna Jansen-Feliciano. "It could be anybody's" panties and condoms.

Police declined comment on the finds.

After Holloway disappeared, U.S. authorities sent FBI agents and divers to help in the search.

The release from jail of John and another former hotel security guard, Abraham Jones, 28, came after the teen's mother, Betty Holloway Twitty, told The Associated Press she believed John and Jones were innocent but that the three other youths should be pressed to tell the truth.

"I knew from day one that I was innocent," John told The Associated Press after his release from detention that began June 5.

John and Jones were detained after the three young men said they dropped Holloway off and last saw her around 2 a.m. being approached in the parking lot of her hotel by a man in a security guard uniform.

John said Kalpoe told him that about an hour after dropping the couple off he received a cell phone text message from the boy, saying he would e-mail Kalpoe as soon as he got home.

Kalpoe said the Dutch boy never sent the promised message, John said.

Attorney General Caren Janssen refused comment on John's statements.

Holloway Twitty said if she did not see results soon, she might start to believe authorities were trying to protect the young men, who told police they took Holloway to a beach after an evening of dancing and drinking.

The Dutch boy is an honors student at Aruba International School and is the son of a high-ranking judicial official in Aruba.

"All three of those boys know what happened to her," Holloway Twitty said Sunday.

The Dutch Caribbean island is governed by a local parliament, and the Netherlands Antilles is responsible for foreign and defense affairs.

One murder and six rapes were recorded last year on the island of 97,000 people. This year there have been two murders and three rapes.

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