New clips from the Oxygen docuseries The Disappearance of Natalee Holloway shows the efforts of her father, a private investigator, and a tipster who befriended a friend of the prime suspect to uncover clues about Holloway’s presumed murder.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, a man by the name of Gabriel met John Ludwick in Florida, and after getting to know him a bit began to suspect he had critical information about Holloway’s 2005 disappearance on a graduation trip to Aruba with girlfriends. Ludwick is believed to be a friend of Joran van der Sloot, the main person of interest in Natalee’s disappearance, who is behind bars for a 2010 murder of a woman in Peru.
Gabriel told CrimeOnline he launched an independent probe himself after learning of Ludwick’s connection to van der Sloot, and befriended the man in an attempt to gain his trust. Ludwick reportedly told Gabriel where van der Sloot disposed of Natalee’s body. Ludwick said van der Sloot claimed that Natalee choked on her own vomit and died after consuming a drink spiked with GHB, known as the “date rape drug.”
In the Oxygen clip, Gabriel and private investigator T.J. Ward discuss a plan for Gabriel to bring Ludwig to New Orleans, where Gabriel will attempt to get Ludwig to reveal all he knows about Natalee’s disappearance.
Gabriel told CrimeOnline that he brought John to Louisiana so that he could legally record their conversation without letting John now. Florida law requires that both parties must consent to be recorded.
“What we are doing is building a criminal case against him,” Ward says in the clip.
In a second clip, Ward and a woman who appears to be a member of the investigative team discuss Gabriel and Ludwick’s conversation. In the clip, the woman reveals that Ludwick changed his story to Gabriel, initially telling him that the body was found in the woods. But he then said the remains were at a residential property.
Gabriel told CrimeOnline that Ludwick led him to the remains in Aruba, which were indeed found buried behind a home. Natalee’s father Dave Holloway and Ward said in an appearance on the Today show last week that the remains have been identified as human, but they are still waiting for the results of a DNA test to determine if they belong to Natalee.
More questions than answers remain about what the Oxygen series is promoting as the first major break in the case in the 12 years since Natalee disappeared. Last week, Aruba Public Prosecutor Dorean Kardol told the Huffington Post that Holloway and Ward’s claims were untrue, and that the remains uncovered were not human.
“During an investigation by police in an area indicated by Mr. Holloway, we found remains, but they were found to be from animals,” Kardol said.
In response to that report, Gabriel told CrimeOnline that Aruba authorities were not to be trusted. But because of his reported non-disclosure agreement with Oxygen, Gabriel could not get into detail about why local law enforcement officials would want to cover up the possibility that Natalee’s remains had been found.
He said that after he contacted Aruba police to tell them he had found remains that may belong to Natalee, police asked him if he had taken any photographic or video evidence, or had told anyone else about it. Gabriel said he did in fact record evidence of his findings but kept that information from police, for reasons he has not yet specified.
He said he believes police are not aware of how much proof he has that Natalee’s remains were buried.
“Now they are trying to lie? When there is solid proof? I am just going to sit back with an ice tea and watch them dig a hole.”
Feature photo: Facebook