LIMA, Peru – Joran van der Sloot ‘s confession in the murder of a 21-year-old woman — allegedly smashing her face and strangling her — was so complete that police decided there was no need to take him to the crime scene for a walkthrough, according to Peru’s criminal police chief.

The case against the young Dutchman, who also remains the lone suspect in the Natalee Holloway missing-teenager case, was to go to prosecutors Thursday so they can file formal charges, said the official, Gen. Cesar Guardia.

“We’ve practically closed the case,” Guardia said. “He’s confessed with a wealth of details that have been corroborated through criminal investigative rigor.”

Guardia denied any suggestion that Van der Sloot’s confession was forced. He said a translator assigned by the Dutch Embassy was present, as was a state-appointed defense attorney.

If tried and convicted on murder charges, Van der Sloot would face from 15 to 35 years in prison.

What remains unresolved is the May 30, 2005 disappearance of Holloway on the Caribbean island of Aruba.

Efforts by the FBI to try to resolve it may have inadvertently helped fund the travel that enabled the murder — exactly five years to the day after the Alabama teenager vanished — of Lima business student Stephany Flores.

Believing it was closing in on Van der Sloot, the FBI videotaped and paid him $25,000 in a sting operation in Aruba last month, investigators said. But it held off on arresting him, and he took the money and flew to Peru.

Peruvian interrogators restricted their questioning of Van der Sloot to the case of Flores, the daughter of a circus promoter and former race car driver whom he met playing poker at a casino, Guardia said.

He said the 6-foot-3 Van der Sloot, 22, impressed investigators with both his intelligence and brutality.

“He grabbed her and smashed her with an elbow,” Guardia said, pointing to his own nose. “A lot of blood spewed out … Then he strangles her and throws her to the floor.”

“He is irascible. He has no self-control,” Guardia said.

Guardia said Van der Sloot attested in his confession to killing Flores because she found out about the Aruba case by using his laptop without his permission.

But he said police didn’t necessarily believe him and think he may have killed Flores before going out and returning to the room with two cups of coffee and rolls.


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