Judge Dismisses Lawsuit in Disappearance of Natalee Holloway

AUGUST 4, 2006 - Posted at 7:55 a.m. CDT

NEW YORK, NY - A lawsuit filed in New York that claimed a Dutch college student was responsible for the disappearance of Natalee Holloway in Aruba last year has been dismissed.  A New York judge said yesterday it should not have been filed there.

Holloway's parents, who sought unspecified damages, claimed that if the suit were filed in Aruba, it would re-ignite a media frenzy that could interfere with the ongoing investigation.  In rejecting that argument, state Judge Barbara Kapnick cited an earlier ruling that found local taxpayers should not have to foot the bill for a complex case when their interest is extremely tenuous.

Holloway, then 18 years old, was visiting the Dutch Caribbean island with high school classmates when she vanished May 30, 2005.  Holloway, who lived in Alabama, has connections to Arkansas.  Her parents are originally from Arkansas and other relatives still live in the state, many in northeast Arkansas.  Holloway's father, Dave Holloway, is a graduate of Westside High School near Jonesboro, but now lives in Meridian, Mississippi.  A grandmother lives in Pine Bluff and an aunt in El Dorado.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)