ORANJESTAD, Aruba – In a conversation recorded by Aruban authorities last summer, three suspects in the disappearance of Natalee Holloway speak in terms that suggest they do not know whether the Alabama teenager is alive or dead.
A translated transcript of the conversation between Joran van der Sloot and the Kalpoe brothers — Deepak and Satish — was handed out to the media in Aruba on Wednesday by an independent American investigator who has done work for Dave Holloway, Natalee's father.
The taping of the conversation was supposed to be secret, but it is not known if the suspects, who were speaking while in custody in the back of a police car, knew the conversation was being taped. And since the actual audio tape was not made available, the authenticity of the translation could not immediately be verified.
In the transcript, the three suspects, who were jailed and later released in the case of the Alabama honors student who disappeared while on vacation in Aruba on May 30, 2005, talk about their fate. In more than one instance they speak as if they do not know if Natalee was alive or dead.
The suspects are identified by the first initial of their first names. One excerpt reads as follows:
J says to D: "I will laugh if they find the girl, f*** you. I know very well you are afraid that is if you did something bad with the girl and if they find the girl, then we will see."
It also appears from the transcript that there was developing friction between the Kalpoe brothers and van der Sloot.
Another excerpt with a translation that was questionable reads as follows:
D says to J: "They're going to give you 15 years if they find the girl."
J says to D: "For what, for what?"
D says to J: "The scholarship of yours, you can forget it."
J says to D: "You well know that you did bad, otherwise you wouldn't lie."
Meanwhile, the family of a 19-year-old arrested Saturday in the case said he had nothing to do with her disappearance.
The family of Geoffrey van Cromvoirt also said in a statement released by his lawyers Wednesday that he is not friends with any of the people previously detained in the Holloway investigation.
"The family van Cromvoirt distances itself completely from all expressions or statements which bring Geoffrey van Cromvoirt in connection with the disappearance of Natalee Holloway and any statements in which any role is attributed to him in this case," the statement said.
Aruban prosecutors, identifying Cromvoirt only by his initials, said he is suspected of "criminal offenses that may be related to the disappearance" of Holloway but have not provided details about why he was arrested.
Holloway, who was 18 when she disappeared, was last seen leaving a bar with van der Sloot and the Kalpoe brothers on the final night of her high school graduation trip to the Caribbean island.
The public prosecutor's office said a coast guard search using sonar and other equipment in an unspecified area off the Dutch-Caribbean island was continuing for a fifth straight day.
Island officials also said they were interviewing witnesses and were in contact with authorities in the Netherlands about tips received after the airing of a television program devoted to unsolved crimes.
FOX News' Julie Banderas and the Associated Press contributed to this report.