Court records filed on Friday reveal that Joran van der Sloot, the primary suspect in the 2005 disappearance of Natalee Holloway, intends to plead guilty in a federal case accusing him of attempting to extort money from the missing teen’s mother. A federal judge has scheduled a plea and sentencing hearing for van der Sloot on October 18 in Birmingham, Alabama. Previously, he had pleaded not guilty in the case.
Van der Sloot, currently serving a 28-year sentence in Peru after confessing to killing a Peruvian woman in 2010, was extradited to Alabama. Holloway went missing during a high school graduation trip to Aruba, where she was last seen leaving a bar with van der Sloot, who was a student at an international school on the island. Despite years of news coverage and true-crime podcasts, Holloway’s body has never been found.
According to U.S. prosecutors, in 2010, van der Sloot sought money from Beth Holloway in exchange for disclosing the location of her daughter’s body. He was indicted by a grand jury that same year.