LIMA – Hoping to secure a shorter prison sentence, Dutch citizen Joran van der Sloot pleaded guilty here Wednesday to murdering a Peruvian woman, Stephany Flores, in 2010.
The defendant, who became famous as the chief suspect in the 2005 disappearance of 18-year-old U.S. student Natalee Holloway in Aruba, told the judges that he considered himself to be guilty and that he felt “very bad” when he was asked if he accepted all the terms of the prosecutors’ indictment.
Prosecutors asked for 30 years in prison for Van der Sloot for the death of Flores, whom he had met in a casino in the Lima tourist district of Miraflores and later took to his hotel room where she was found dead.
By confessing, Van der Sloot could receive a reduction in the sentence that will depend on the evaluation of the aggravating circumstances by the three-judge panel.
Van der Sloot’s attorney, Jose Luis Jimenez, told the court that his client was making a sincere confession, but that that did not mean that he agreed with the punishment demanded by prosecutors or the proposed monetary judgment of 200,000 soles ($74,000).
Jimenez said that his client was 21 when he murdered Flores and was “at war with the world” as a result of the Holloway case.
In addition, the lawyer said that Van der Sloot was suffering from post-traumatic stress from the February 2010 death of his father.
The attorney representing the Flores family, Edward Alvarez, said that the defendant was a “psychopath” and announced that he will appeal the sentence if it proves to be for less than the 30 years in prison asked for by the prosecution. EFE