Reporting Mike Hellgren
ORANJESTAD, Aruba (WJZ) — The Maryland man suspected in the disappearance of his friend is staying put in an Aruban prison for now. A panel of three judges denied Gary Giordano’s appeal for release Wednesday afternoon.
Mike Hellgren has more on what that means for Giordano and the case.
This was Giordano’s one shot to appeal a ruling last week that he be held for 60 more days on the island while police and prosecutors dig up evidence against him.
What was supposed to be a short vacation in paradise has turned into a month-long stay in an Aruban prison for Gary Giordano and he likely won’t be getting out for at least another two months.
Giordano is the man from Maryland who prosecutors believe is behind the suspicious disappearance of his friend Robyn Gardner, who’s also from Maryland.
He left court again Wednesday, covered in a shirt, after losing his latest appeal for release. His lawyer said Giordano was “sad and disappointed” and that he was being “detained improperly” and his “rights are being violated.”
Giordano claims Gardner disappeared while snorkeling. Police say he acted suspiciously during questioning and point to accusations of domestic abuse in his past. Giordano also reportedly tried to cash in a $1.5 million accidental death insurance policy in Gardner’s name just two days after she vanished.
But there’s no smoking gun. Despite several searches, investigators have found no evidence linking Giordano to any foul play involving Gardner.
“You need to find her dead or alive,” said legal analyst Beth Karas.
Gardner’s loved ones haven’t given up hope.
“Something happened at this person’s hand,” said Gardner’s boyfriend, Richard Forester.
Forester also posted this on Facebook: “We’re coming baby. I’ve got a few aces up my sleeve. We will find you and bring you home. Count on it! I’m missing you so much. I love you.”
Giordano has not been charged with any crime, but under the legal system in Aruba, he can still be detained.
Giordano’s attorney says he believes his client is only being held because of how sensitive the Aruban authorities are after the high-profile disappearance of Natalee Holloway in 2005. Her body was never found.