Aruba's Justice Minister Rudy Croes confirmed on Thursday that Van der Straten delayed the start of investigations in order to protect his friend, Paulus van der Sloot, the father of Joran who is the main suspect in the case. Paulus was working for the Justice Ministry at the time.
Minister Croes made his public statement about the commissioner's dallying following critical remarks by Van der Straten about Aruba's police. Shortly after Natalee's disappearance in 2005, the Dutch police commissioner was overheard saying "I cannot do this to my friend Paul".
The Justice Minister says there were remarkably frequent phone conversations between Jan van der Straten and Paul van der Sloot in the first days after the American teenager went missing.