(Photo : Reuters)
Joran van der Sloot, a key suspect in the disappearance and death of Alabama teen Natalee Holloway, and the convicted killer of a young Peruvian woman, is preparing to wed in the Peruvian prison where he is serving a 28-year sentence for murder.
Maximo Altez, van der Sloot's lawyer, has confirmed his client's plans to marry his girlfriend Leydi Figueroa Uceda in June. The couple are waiting on Peru's National Penitentiary Institute (INPE) to grant permission for the ceremony as they finish up paperwork related to the nuptials, according to the Herald Sun.
Van der Sloot, 25, and Uceda, 23, would be married in a simple service held within the walls of the Piedras Gordas maximum security prison, located just outside of Lima.
The couple allegedly met when Uceda was visiting another inmate at the prison. She began visiting van der Sloot regularly and they struck up a romantic relationship. It was rumored in October that Uceda was pregnant with van der Sloot's child, but this rumor was never confirmed.
Van der Sloot's current prison sentence in Peru stems from an incident that occurred five years to the day after Holloway's disappearance. In 2010, van der Sloot met 21-year-old Peruvian Stephany Flores in a casino where the two were playing poker. Flores was later found dead in a hotel room registered under van der Sloot's name, according to various media reports.
Van der Sloot plead guilty to the "cruel and savage" murder of Flores and was sentenced to 28 years. He was also ordered to pay approximately $74,000 in damages to the Flores family, the Herald Sun reports.
In 2005, van der Sloot became the prime suspect in the disappearance of 18-year-old Natalee Holloway in his native country of Aruba, where Holloway was vacationing on a trip with her high school. Van der Sloot and two other men, brothers Deepak and Satish Kalpoe, were the last people to see Holloway alive when the three of them left a nightclub with the girl in the early hours of May 30.
Van der Sloot was arrested twice in connection with Holloway's disappearance but was never formally charged. Holloway was declared officially dead by a judge in 2012 and van der Sloot remains the chief suspect.
Van der Sloot traveled to Peru in 2010, the year that he killed Flores, to play poker in a tournament and funded the trip with $25,000 of the $250,000 that he attempted to extort from Holloway's parents in exchange for information on where the girl's body could be found, according to CNN.
The information he gave turned out to be false and a federal grand jury in Alabama indicted him on alleged extortion charges.
According to various media reports, van der Sloot is scheduled to be extradited to the United States to face the extortion charges. AL.com reports that Peru's Supreme Court ruled that van der Sloot can be extradited to face a possible 25-year extortion sentence once he has finished serving his current sentence.
There has been much speculation in both the Peruvian and American media that by marrying Uceda, a Peruvian citizen, van der Sloot could avoid the extradition to the United States. His attorney denies these allegations, according to a report from the Huffington Post.