Thursday, May 26, 2011

Natalee Holloway - Prey Meets Predator in Paradise

In 2005, America was on tenterhooks searching for a girl named Natalee Holloway (pictured above) who, on her last night in Aruba where her class of 130+ students took a graduation trip, disappeared. She was last seen flirting and leaving a club with Joran van der Sloot, a Dutch national living in Aruba (a Caribbean country under the sovereign of the Netherlands). She was never found, and her disappearance caused a frantic media sensation that even involved the whole island declaring half-day holiday just to help find Natalee.

More than anything, this is a cautionary tale of appearances being not what they seem, of precaution and trust involved in international travel. After all, monsters don't always have scary fangs, blood-shot eyes, sharp claws and hideous faces. Sometimes, they come in the form of a gorgeous face - like Joran van der Sloot! Though Joran was never indicted for Natalee's disappearance or possible murder ("insufficient evidence"), he was later charged with the first-degree murder of a Peruvian business student (Joran was caught in Chile). He was also indicted for charges of extortion - against Natalee's mother, Beth Twitty, played in the film by Tracy Pollan.

This post is written to remind every girl (or boy) out there never to trust strangers with your drinks. You never know what they actually give you. Moreover, it's rather silly to get inside strangers' cars! You might not come home alive.

Joran van der Sloot

Amy Gumenick as Natalee as Jacques Strydom as Joran van der Sloot - Prey and Predator

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