Peru: The Rights to Remain Silent and To Counsel and the Insanity Defense

The Peru Penal Code and the New Code of Penal Procedure address the rights of defendants and defense counsel, provide for the insanity defense and explain the procedure for taking statements during the investigation phase of the case. For those interested in the Joran Van der Sloot case in Peru, the details may prove interesting. (For those not interested, just scroll on by.)

The full penal code is here. The new code of penal procedure is here.

Peru provides many rights to the defendant, including the right to remain silent and the right to have a lawyer present during questioning.

I'm reprinting portions below that I think are relevant to Joran Van der Sloot, both as to the insanity defense, the right to remain silent and to have a lawyer present during questioning, and the proscription against coerced confessions. [More...]

Via Google translation (emphasis is by me):

Article 71 .- Rights of the accused

1. The accused may defend himself or through his counsel, the rights that the Constitution and laws granted since the beginning of the first steps in the investigation until the completion of the process.

2. Judges, Prosecutors and the National Police should be made known to the accused immediately and comprehensively, it is entitled to:

a) To know the charges against him and in case of detention, to express it the cause or reason for its action, delivering the warrant turned against them, where appropriate;

b) Designate the person or institution you should contact his arrest and that such disclosure is made immediately;

c) To be assisted from the initial acts of investigation by a lawyer;

d) To refrain from declaring, and if you agree to do so to his counsel is present in its statement and in all proceedings in which their presence is required;

e) not use coercive means against, threatening or contrary to their dignity, nor to be subjected to techniques or methods that induce or alter the free will or suffer a restriction is not authorized or permitted by law, and

f) Be examined by a medical examiner or alternatively by another health professional, where the state of health so requires.

3. The fulfillment of the requirements in the preceding paragraphs on record should be signed by the accused and the appropriate authority. If the accused refuses to sign the record shall indicate the abstention, and shall indicate the reason if we stated. When the refusal occurs in the first steps in the investigation, after intervention by the Prosecutor shall record such fact in the minutes.

4. If the accused believes that during the preliminary or preparatory research has not complied with these provisions, or that their rights are not respected, or is the subject of restrictive measures undue rights or illegal requirements, you can go on the way custody to the Justice of the preliminary investigation to rectify the omission or dictate corrective measures or protection that apply. The application of the accused will be solved immediately, after finding the facts and conducting a hearing with the participation of the parties.

There's also specific rights for defense counsel that address, among other things, the preliminary statement of the defendant:

Article 84 .- Rights of the defense attorney defense attorney has all the rights which the law gives to the exercise of their profession, especially the following:

....4. Participate in all proceedings, except to the testimony given during the investigation stage by the defendant who does not defend.
(I think this means the defense attorney doesn't have a right to be present if the defendant waives his presence, but I'm not sure.)

Article 86 Time and nature of the statement .-

1. In the course of the proceedings at all stages and in accordance with the provisions of this Code, the accused has the right to testify and larger, in order to pursue his defense and respond to the charges against him. Come reporting extensions if they are relevant and not appear only as a dilatory or malicious proceedings.

2. During the preliminary investigation the accused, subject it to the police with the provisions of this Code, will testify before the Prosecutor, with the necessary assistance of his counsel, at his orders or when the defendant's request.

3. During the trial the statement will be received at the time and manner provided for such act.

Article 87 .- Getting Started

1. Before the declaration of the accused, he shall detail the complaint made to the elements of proof and evidence, and criminal provisions that are deemed applicable. Similarly proceed when it comes to its extensions charges or the presence of new elements of proof or evidence. Governing the numeral 2) of Article 71.

2. Also, be warned that have the right to refrain from testifying and that decision may not be used against him. He was also instructed to have the right to the presence of counsel, and if you can not, appoint a public defender appointed. If the new attorney joins defense, the accused has the right to consult with him before starting the diligence and, where appropriate, to request the postponement of it. (This seems to me to be the violation that will be in the habeas petition. They gave Joran a public defender, he said he wanted private counsel, they sent another lawyer instead of continuing the process until Maximo Altez could be present.)

3. The accused will also be informed that you can request the performance of investigative or trial, to make the clarification that it considers appropriate in the diligence, and to make his statement during the preliminary investigation stage.

4. Only the defendant may urge to respond with clarity and precision the questions put to him. The judge or the prosecutor during the preliminary investigation, may make him see the legal benefits that cooperation can be obtained if the early clarification of the criminal acts.

Article 88 .- Development of the declaration

....4. During interrogation the questions are clear and precise, no questions may be submitted ambiguous, misleading or suggestive. During the due diligence may not coerced in any way the defendant, or induce or to testify against her will and no charges or reprimands will make efforts to obtain his confession.

.... 6. If the duration of the event will notice signs of fatigue or lack of serenity in the accused, the statement will be suspended until they disappear.

7. Preparatory Research for the record containing the statement of the accused reproduce, as faithfully as possible what happens in the proceedings. The accused is entitled to dictate answers. Diligence in this phase will end with the reading and signature or, where appropriate, digital printing, the act by all involved. If the accused refuses to testify, in whole or in part, shall be recorded in the minutes. If you refuse to sign it shall indicate the reason.

As to insanity, the Penal Code Article 20 provides:

Article 20 .- insanity

It is exempt from criminal liability:

1. The mental disorder which, severe disturbance of consciousness or suffer alterations in perception, which severely affects their concept of reality, does not have the power to understand the nature of his act or criminal act to be determined according to this understanding;

Article 21 .- Responsibility restricted In the cases of Article 20, if any one of the requirements to remove completely the responsibility (is not met), the court may reduce the penalty to prudently limits below the legal minimum.

As to the process, the criminal procedure code says:

Article 75 .- insanity of the accused

1. When there are serious reasons for considering the state of insanity of the accused at the time of the facts, the judge hearing the preliminary investigation or the criminal judge, college or a one, depending on the status of the case, will, on its own initiative or at the request of a party, practice of examination by a specialized expert.

2. Received an expert report, after hearing, involving the parties and the expert if the court finds a prima facie ground for estimating the state of insanity of the accused, will issue the relevant resolution urging the initiation of the security procedure in accordance with this Code.

Article 76 .- occurring mental abnormality

1. If after the crime was committed serious mental disorder befalls the accused, the Judge of the Research School or the criminal judge, college or a one, order, ex officio or at the request of a party, an examination by a specialized expert. Evacuated to the opinion, date and time will be brought to the realization of the hearing, with citation of the parties and experts.

2. If the analysis of the proceedings, the court noted that the defendant presents a serious mental disorder that prevents him from continuing with the case, the process is adjourned until treatment of the disease makes it possible to restart it. If necessary, order placement in a specialized hospital.

3. The suspension of the process prevent the statement of the accused or the trial, depending on when an order, without prejudice to proceed with the investigation of the act or continue the cause for the codefendants.

It seems it's not just enough for the defendant to know the difference between right and wrong in Peru. It also must be determined that he has the ability to act in accordance with that understanding. And if he only meets some, but not all, the elements of the insanity test, he can still get a reduced sentence.

These provisions don't just get lip service in Peru. In 2003, The Supreme Court of Peru vacated the convictions and sentences of two men convicted of raping and murdering a Peruvian nun, Lita Castillo. Because of evidence of mental impairment, their sentences (one got 10 years and one got 20 years) were vacated and a new trial was ordered.

As I wrote the other day when outlining the specific charges against Joran (murder with special circumstances and simple theft, not aggravated robbery), the Constitution of Peru also provides rights for the accused, including the presumption of innocence.

24 e) Every person is considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Joran Van der Sloot is not the only defendant in Peru to challenge the voluntariness of his confession or claim he was denied the right to have counsel present, to assert his innocence after making a confession, or to insist on the presumption of innocence. I wrote here about two other current murder defendants, also housed at Miguel Castro Castro prison awaiting trial, making the same arguments.

Lastly, I just want to repeat that my intention in posting all this stuff is to keep Peru's process and treatment of Joran as transparent as possible. Joran may or may not have killed Stephany Flores -- that's not my call to make and I presume him to be innocent, until a court fairly finds otherwise. Nor is it my call to say whether he's a candidate for the insanity defense. What I am determined to do is ensure this 22 year old, who has turned into the most hated man in the Western Hemisphere, largely because of an unresolved disappearance case in Aruba 5 years ago where the woman's family went on national media night after night accusing him of murder and cover-ups, at least has one person reporting the proceedings through the lens of the Constitution.

Joran will become a blip on the media's radar screen when he does not have a court hearing. And still confined to what we in this country would consider a "hell hole" of a prison. Peruvian officials are on good behavior now, because the whole world is watching. I intend to continue reporting on his case, because I want to keep it in the limelight, which in turn, will keep Peru on good behavior and hopefully, keep Joran safe from the physical and emotional harm that occurs in such prisons. And, to counter as best I can, the uniquely American notion that it's okay for trials to take place in living rooms instead of courtrooms, and be decided by people with zero or less knowledge of the facts or applicable law.

Guilt sells in America, while innocence results in calls for the tv channel changer. That's not something to be proud of, and in Joran's case, I'll do my part, as little as it is, to prevent it from spreading to other countries.

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    Wonderfuly informative article Jeralyn (none / 0) (#1)
    by AlohaMade on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 07:46:30 AM EST
    However I do have a few questions. I read article's about the psychological evaluation, while they do not say anything about Joran being a sociopath, or psychopath. They mention that he is inmature, has a lack of respect for women, and simple contradiction's can cause him to have fits of rage, that he could cause physical harm to someone. Do you think that in this evaluation, that they are saying, he knows right from wrong? And could this be a detriment to his case? Also I have read that his mother was schdueling to put him in a high security mental institution in the Netherlands, but Joran took off to Peru. My question is, if in fact she was going to put him in this sort of Hospital, he must have been evaluated in Aruba, by a Doctor there, so would they be able to use that psychological evaluation, as evidence in the Peruvian case? Assuming that one exists of course. One more then I am done. One of the Lawyers on NG said he felt they should have had a Dutch speaking Psychologist doing the evaluation, rather than a Peruvian Doctor, because terminology is worded differently. What is your take?
    Mahalo Nui Loa!

    Insanity Defense (none / 0) (#2)
    by Untold Story on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 10:54:49 AM EST
    Psychological evaluation indicates JvS as emotionally immature resulting in strong changes in behavior that can send him out of control.  If someone is out of control then clearly they are not capable of perceiving and evaluating reality, as they are acting in a state of blind rage wherein any and all understanding is absent.

    He may not show any psychopathological trauma but it is fair to assume he has suffered great emotional psychological trauma as a result of the Aruba case.  One of the many results of trauma can cause contradictory and fragmented stories about the event or events resulting in credibility issues.

    Think it only fair to also assume he has been trapped in a childish (teenage) mentality.  Teen years provide preparatory development for adulthood and his normal development was interrupted by the events five years ago which he has had to endure to this day.  

    The psychological trauma he suffered must have caused incredible pain, desperation and feelings of hopelessness. It would also seem from his travels(need to get away)that he is suffering through this trauma in the isolation of self.

    The psychological report (none / 0) (#3)
    by jbindc on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 11:39:29 AM EST
    Specifically says that although he is emotionally immature and has no respect for women,

    "He doesn't show any psychopathological trauma that impedes him from perceiving and evaluating reality."

    Someone can be immature but that doesn't mean they aren't living in reality and they can tell the difference between right and wrong.  If he is going to use some kind of insanity defense, this is not good news for his team - until they can get an expert that says otherwise.


    Out of control behavior (none / 0) (#5)
    by Untold Story on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 12:21:39 PM EST
    could impede his understanding of reality in the moment.

    Disrespect for women - again, there may well be cultural differences and necessitate development of specific standards of criteria as to social norms, rules and obligations.


    Cultural differences? (none / 0) (#22)
    by jbindc on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 08:17:25 AM EST
    He's Dutch, you know, the Netherlands - where they have some of the most socially liberal laws and policies.  You think if he has a "disrespect of women" it's because of cultural differences?



    MAY be due (none / 0) (#24)
    by Untold Story on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 08:30:56 AM EST
    I feel everything should be explored especially since different cultures are involved.  

    Also, Joran's view of women may be clouded by girls going wild in the casinos and bars of Aruba which he frequented from an early age.


    Typical (none / 0) (#25)
    by squeaky on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 08:33:15 AM EST
    You are arguing for the side of prosecution again. The psychological report is the governments report. And the cnn quote of the psychological report does not say he has no respect for women, that is your interpretation.

    And the cultural attitude of Peru regarding women versus the culture attitude of the Netherlands regarding women is surely different.

    As long as we are interpreting the "report" I would say that maybe Joran is not sexist. IOW he does not feel the need to open the door for a woman, pick up her handkerchief if dropped, or treat a woman any differently than he would treat a man.

    US is way more sexist than the Netherlands, and I imagine that Peru is way more sexist than the US.

    But it is true, I have never been to Peru, or South America, although I have had contact with many spanish speaking people in the US who come from south and central america. They treat women differently than we do in the US.


    You need to read agasin (none / 0) (#26)
    by jbindc on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 11:08:34 AM EST
    The report says:

    "He reflects a certain dominance over the opposite sex. He doesn't value the female role," the document states.

    Its adds, "he presents traits of an anti-social personality" and is "indifferent towards others' well being."

    And the point being made was that maybe we are interpreting Joran's behavior of not respecting women through our own lens and not the culture in which he was raised - so my point is valid.  He was not raised in a country that has women as second class citizens - say a Middle Eastern country.

    And just because my comment doesn't jive with the some of the pretzel logic around here and that some cannot even consider that he is guilty, doesn't mean I'm "arguing for the prosecution".

    What nonsense.


    I Read It (none / 0) (#27)
    by squeaky on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 11:18:24 AM EST
    You said:

    Specifically says that although he is emotionally immature and has no respect for women,

    That is your interpretation of the words used in the government's report:

    He doesn't value the female role

    Do you value the female role? BTW, what is the female role?

    The female role is culturally determined, that is a fact. It is clear that Joran's culture and the culture of Peru are quite different regarding how they see women's role in society aka the value of the female role.

    Untold Story's comment is right on the money, imo:

    ...there may well be cultural differences and necessitate development of specific standards of criteria as to social norms, rules and obligations.

    Your writing that off as nonsense, and mocking Untold Story's comment is really off base, imo.


    You sound racist (none / 0) (#28)
    by Untold Story on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 01:23:09 PM EST
    and generalizing in your comments about 'the Dutch' and the midde east!  Earlier in a post you mentioned 'Europeans' - so what gives?

    I presume him to be innocent, until..." (none / 0) (#4)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 11:58:16 AM EST
    I presume him to be innocent, until a court fairly finds otherwise
    [my bolds & italics]

    Quite a caveat, that.

    Anyway, it would seem JV's mom has been actively doing her part in laying the groundwork for the insanity defense.

    How? (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by waldenpond on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 12:37:05 PM EST
    I don't see her comments helpful at all.  She calls him a liar and states she won't visit him in prison.  Being a liar is not an insanity defense.  If she thought he was so ill, she should have had him involuntarily committed but it is obvious she had no grounds.

    "My son is sick in his head," (none / 0) (#7)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 12:44:27 PM EST
    "My son is sick in his head," De Telegraaf quoted Anita van der Sloot as saying in her first public comment since her son's latest arrest. [...] "I can't cry for Joran like I did for Paul. I hope that he gets psychological help."

    Personal animosity (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by waldenpond on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 01:31:40 PM EST
    She doesn't like him is obvious.  Sad.  I just don't see anything in his behavior that rises to the likelihood of an insanity defense.

    Makes friends easily, owned his own business, travels, likes to gamble and party.  He had money problems which could be enough stress to cause depression but that is not 'insanity' it's a manageable mental illness.


    Not being reported (none / 0) (#13)
    by Untold Story on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 07:24:02 PM EST
    accurately is my take.  

    My impression - he did suffer greatly under the overbearing and relentless pressure of being tagged a murderer.  This obviously caused him psychological damage.  His mother is trying to address this issue and point to it as the start of a psychological decline in Joran.

    She feels guilt in sending him to Holland to study where he came 'undone'.  Rather, he should have received counseling and help in Aruba.  

    When she says she cannot 'embrace him', I feel she actually means she cannot condone his actions, if, in fact, he murdered someone.  


    What AVDS really meant. (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 01:20:03 AM EST
    Thank you (none / 0) (#29)
    by Untold Story on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 01:40:18 PM EST
    i still await (none / 0) (#9)
    by cpinva on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 03:22:36 PM EST
    the presentation, in court, of the prosecution's evidence.

    sad deal (none / 0) (#10)
    by pac on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 03:35:19 PM EST
    The mother is sort of damned if she does and damned if she doesn'..  

    Mrs. VDS had to have thought Joran was not rational when he began telling the various stories about the Holloway case and had no need to say anything. He appeared to have needed help to cope. I suspect, ? that it was more difficult for her to act once Joran was of age.

    If correct that Joran was staying with his mother in Aruba when he left a note and disappeared to Peru then she was living with him and probably trying to do the best that she could and add on a grief period.

    Her initial reaction is that she doesn't want to visit him and he will need to bear the consequences. Read online and learn how many accuse of of Joran's problems and call her an enabler, etc. She isn't the one who enabled Joran's trip to Peru and according to her she was in process of trying to take action in his benefit. Possibly there is the same as death and she will go through denial, "it stinks", anger "won't embrace will have to bear consequences" and then? who knows after she has a better understanding the end result. Just a guess.
    To "not know what is the truth or not anymore" sounds more like a distorted reality and maybe that is what she was trying to suggest rather than a liar.

    The girlfriend who said Joran started lying is probably truth but a teenage boy not ready to settle down that might sound fairly normal. Maybe he was lying about his whereabouts with other ladies. Just another guess. Wouldn't it be great if we could declare all guys lying about that circumstance insane and put them away?

    Response to Untold Story. I agree with your insight. Also, Joran must have suffered serious low self esteem as a result and possibly developed unusual coping mechanisms. For example, Joran's mother said he told the investigative reporter something to look "tough" I think she said? To look tough might be a cover up for being vulnerable.

    Yes, I agree that emotional immature could result from being stuck in time and maybe even suggest a immature and then a tough personality result but?  I am unqualified to know.

    What I do believe is that Joran problems than what I saw reported on CNN. Also, no previous reports of a pattern where Joran appears with such disregard for females but? and no stories told by females to back up that finding that I have read so far. The girlfriend didn't not portray him in that respect.

    On the other hand, it is more difficult to evaluate the Holloway case in hindsight after the recent.Natalee's brother believes that she had seizures story rather than graduating to a more violent possibilty so something to be said for that I suppose.


    respond (none / 0) (#11)
    by pac on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 06:43:26 PM EST
    Response to diogenes: The whacking off of hair can be a sign of a nervous breakdown. Think of Brittney shaving her head.

    The fact that Joran was again mixed up in odd circumstances involving the Holloway case, which money was used for jet set, tells me he was not thinking rationally. The best I am aware, Joran told a story to the investigative reporter and felt better to "get it off his head" without extorting money which showed a need to explain. We don't know all of the circumstances involving Joran and the alleged extortion. If true, Mr. Kelly met once with Joran alone in a hotel room. What was said?  The "jet set" took place during the anniversary of Natalee's disappearance and in the midst of talks about those circumstances, all of which the stress of could have added to whatever other mental baggage. Oh, and the loss of his dad, the state of his mother, and so on. The jet set could have been an escape from reality?

    Sorry, I can't "admit" to Joran "almost certainly killed" Natalee in Aruba without proof. She could be alive, she could have died accidentally... How can you do more than speculate without evidence? Considering Joran's background, at that time, and no reports of physical threat or harm to other females, a murder seemed much less likely than other possibilities. Due to the recent there is more to indicate a capability but also a possibility the disappearance situation and handling of it ended in a meltdown. There is no proof yet what happened to Natalee other than the fact she disappeared after leaving with Joran and two other boys. I think the changes in story, drop at hotel, left at beach, buried in foundation or just the lack of a consistent story an alert but whether or not due to disappear, accident, murder, trauma, disintegration of a personality or ??????? who knows? The fact that Joran kept adding to his problems was obviously self destructive. I don't know if Joran showed such self destructive behavior before Natalee's disappearance or what so much self destruction means psychologically?

    Escape from reality (none / 0) (#14)
    by Untold Story on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 07:44:06 PM EST
    Yes - no reports of physical threats or harm to other females -
    prior to NH disappearance.

    My guess has always been NH overdosed on drugs and booze from seniors gone wild week in Aruba.

    What actually happened to her body is a mystery.

    However, if Joran's father made a poor judgement call that night, then it also could be reason for Joran to want to escape from the reality of it all.  Perhaps, he saw his father's decision as wrong and, perhaps, even a betrayal.  

    Since, according to the mother, Joran felt so much remorse upon the death of his father it would seem there are unresolved father/son issues festering at the core of this young man.  It also means he is not a sociopath.


    please don't change the topic (none / 0) (#18)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 11:32:06 PM EST
    to a discussion of the Holloway case. This is about Joran, Peru and Stephany Flores. Thank you.

    Anita Van der Sloot (none / 0) (#12)
    by AlohaMade on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 07:03:52 PM EST
    I wrote in another thread here on TL about my theory of Anita, you see I am thinking that she was a subserviant wife, this is why nothing was done about Joran's need for psychological help, until after Paulus' death. She had no control over Joran's life until recently. I think that Anita believed what her husband told her, and what he said to do. I think all along she may have wanted to help Joran, but, when Paulus say's there is nothing wrong the boy, well that is that. If we are discussing a "Nature vs. Nurture" issue here then, as I interpret the psych. evaluation Joran problems seem more Nurture than Nature. I really don't see "insanity" coming from that. Also I had written earlier with some questions for Jeralyn to answer, but I would also love to hear from the rest of you as well. Come on pac, you haven't let me down yet!
    Mahalo Nui Loa!

    respond (none / 0) (#15)
    by pac on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 09:51:44 PM EST
    In Joran's younger pictures he is smiling, has his arm around people, etc. The visual aspect, without being around him, appears someone who would most likely fall into a situation, such as, unintentionally in comparison to a stalker type who tried to lure uninterested girls...  The Joran Mr. Kelly described, looked like "ice" "psychopath" ??  So, if Mr. Kelly observations are accurate, how to explain? If so, Mr. Kelly wouldn't have been dealing with the same Joran who was hanging over his dad's coffin or appearing traumatized and depressed which his mother observed? If Joran looked like a cold as ice psychopath then everyone would have been noticing that for a long time? Is Mr. Kelly full of it or did he see a development designed to deal with the people, such as Mr. Kelly, who Joran, vulnerable, was unable to find a solution otherwise?

    I didn't notice anything obvious or negative about Mrs. VDS to report. During the Holloway investigation she cried openly and spoke for herself. Regarding legal matters she should have considered her husband the authority. The Holloway situation involved legal and personal issues that could have been difficult to navigate individually.

    Possibly the VDS felt they could support and help Joran cope with the trauma. They also had their own reputations and problems as a result and two other children. Possibly when Joran remained with his family and support he did better than when he went to the Netherlands to attend college. His mother mentioned that idea she felt was a mistake. By the time they recognized the mistake and his inability to cope Joran was older and may have refused help, just as she stated.

    There could have been a legal difficulty involved with emotional help for Joran at an earlier date. I don't know the legal requirements that mental health providers are required to report regarding crime? such as if Joran confessed to the disposal of a body or the use of illegal drugs or whatever. A person having a doctor patient confidential relationship might not include failing to report something illegal? Possibly it was considered unwise to include others due to legal worries or an attempt not to add to the problems by including additional people and paper trail.

    I think someone could develop a problem having nothing to do with their mom dad or genetic but caused by outside factors. Just as people can go to war and end traumatized.  


    ps (none / 0) (#16)
    by pac on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 10:00:05 PM EST
    Oh, meant to say that whether or not there could have alredy pre exist Holloway case a difference in Joran, such as the look Mr. Kelly claims to have observed, I don't know but haven't seen anything reported from earlier history to suggest.

    I woldn't take anything (none / 0) (#17)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Jun 22, 2010 at 11:16:25 PM EST
    anybody in the Holloway camp says about their impressions of Joran seriously.  They focused on him early as the villain, for understandable reasons, and he's tortured them and played them for fools all along, so their hostility and focus on him, while understandable, makes them totally unreliable observers, just as much as his own mother is an unreliable observer.

    We had this in a branch of my family, where a young family member disappeared, her body eventually found years later, and no good evidence of the perpetrator.  The case will never be solved.  But most of the family focused in on one possible suspect and 20 years later still clings to his villainy with great passion.  Their idea of what "the look in his eyes" shows is completely unreliable.


    respond and questions (none / 0) (#19)
    by pac on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 01:15:07 AM EST
    Respond gryfalcon:  I see what you mean about careful to place emphasis on what Mr. Kelly claimed to have observed, but ? I think Mrs. VDS, although "shocked" and obviously "unable to fathom" would still likely be able to offer a lot of insight about Joran.

    I don't know if Joran was torturing the Holloways. He wasn't torturing the investigative reporter but appeared to have a desire to explain. Although Joran was inadvertantly torturing, I am unsure if that was the actual goal?

    Without the findings of information on Joran's computer compared to statements in his confession it is also difficult to deteremine what happened that led to Stephany's death?

    Also, how to understand that there was no firm extortion case before Joran left for Peru but that there is one now?

    Mental State (none / 0) (#21)
    by mellyrel on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 04:05:18 AM EST
    the translation 'sick in his head' is much more inflammatory than 'suffering from mental illness' or 'depressed' which wouldn't sound so bad- and since so many people suffer from mental illness, would be much more acceptable.Also mental illnes does not make one a murdering psychopath.The media know this and spin it as badly as possible.
    The CNN article will not name its source which questions its authenticity.However, the issues it says Joran has, are the same problems someone with Adult ADD has-issues with lying, gambling, impulsivity, unable to admit to lying and elaborating on lies when trapped, explosive temper (not killing people, but maybe throwing things when angry)
    Plus after the way he has been treated in the last 5 years, no wonder he went off the rails.He is not even a suspect in Aruba now but everyone around the world thinks he is a murderer, it scares me reading even good news sites that all journalists seem to be doing little research and using historical comments made by beth twitty & co as factual base to discuss Joran.Lazy journalism!

    And again (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by jbindc on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 08:19:02 AM EST
    She's his mother.  I would expect nothing less than a mother to say and do whatever it takes to protect her son.  We cannot take her word that he's "sick in the head" - maybe he is.  But what do you expect his mother to say?

    insanity defense (none / 0) (#30)
    by diogenes on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 08:10:01 PM EST
    If his mother wants to use the insanity defense then I guess she thinks that he did it.  So much for the Elton Garcia defense.

    diogenes (none / 0) (#31)
    by pac on Wed Jun 23, 2010 at 11:33:54 PM EST
    "Sick in the head" I interpret as compared to physical illness. Stress and trauma can people to become sick in various areas and she is being specific.

    diogenes: Just because Joran's mother thinks he is "sick in the head" and could have killed Stephany doesn't rule out a set up.

    Joran could be "sick in the head" and set up.

    the language (none / 0) (#32)
    by Untold Story on Thu Jun 24, 2010 at 08:26:14 AM EST
    'sick in the head' seems to me to be a literal translation.  It sounds harsh and, in my opinion, does not reflect what the mother meant to say when translated into English in such a raw form.

    Literal translation does not show the intent of the speaker in my opinion.  


    mentally ill (none / 0) (#33)
    by diogenes on Thu Jun 24, 2010 at 03:47:20 PM EST
    In English, sick in the head translates as "mentally ill", using more Latin than anglo-saxon words.