Missing in Panama — A Mystery Deepens

Back in the Spring, I noted here the story of two Dutch students, Kris Kremers and Lisanne Froon, who came to my town of Boquete, Panama, and never made it home. One beautiful April day, they disappeared on a hike near the local volcano, leaving town without a guide and without saying precisely which trail they were taking.blue2 Their only companion was “Blue,” the Husky mix who belonged to the hostel where the students were staying. “Blue” returned to Boquete, but, ominously, the girls didn’t.

The disappearance was one which captured my attention on several planes. Like everyone else in Boquete, I was horrified thinking of what the girls must be enduring. There was also the fact that they disappeared from my own back yard, not an everyday occurrence. And then there was the mystery of it all. As a writer, I couldn’t help being pulled in by the story.

Early days — no one knew what resources they had. Food was important, water even more so, but possibly the most critical item was a GPS or even a simple compass. Lacking those, the sun would be their only reference point and the sun in Panama — like so many other things here — is not always what it seems to be.

Here’s why: The tiny, narrow country of Panama runs in an East-West direction, almost doubling back on itself, serpent-like. Owing to a peculiar optical illusion, the sun here appears to rise in the West, not the East.

The sun rising in the West as seen in this photo of Punta Paitilla, Panama City, Panama. Credit: The Panama News

The sun rising in the West as seen in this photo of Punta Paitilla, Panama City, Panama. Credit: The Panama News

If the women were not aware of this peculiarity, they would be pulled in the wrong direction, away from town, further into the jungle. This alone is a powerful, potentially tragic story element.

But this, like so much about their disappearance, is speculation.

Even the "Easy" trails in Boquete can be treacherous. One slip and...

Even the “Easy” trails in Boquete can be treacherous.

While most believed the girls had simply stepped off a trail and become lost, as others certainly have before them, Panama has also seen its share of terrible crimes, including human trafficking, gruesome serial murders, machete decapitations, and lots more to fuel the imagination.

On top of this, our particular locale suffers from a persistent, ugly urban legend that casts healthy young adults and children as victims of a vicious Central American organ harvesting scheme.

I’ve always maintained that by moving to Panama, I’ve happened upon a treasure-trove of potential plot lines. This is one time I didn’t want to think about all the different possibilities. Unfortunately, as news of the girls’ disappearance spread throughout our community, there were several awful “what if” scenarios that lent special energy to the developing hunt.

It didn’t take long for that hunt to come together, and, when it did, it was huge: Coordinating it was Panama’s Policia Nacional, along with the Directorate of Judicial Investigation and the National Civil Protection System, a mouthful collectively known as SINAPROC.sinaproc5

Even before officialdom mobilized, the Boquete Bomberos (fire department), had swung intogood searchers action. Swelled by eager Panamanian and gringo volunteers, the Bomberos hit the ground running, immediately targeting the most popular local trails. Simultaneously, in Holland, the families established a reward of $2500, and a compelling “Missing” poster flooded Panama. Within days, the reward jumped to $30,000.missingThe disappearance of the girls had become a major event not only in the life of our community but in Panama as a whole and, of course, in Holland.

As the investigation progressed, the Dutch sent their own contingent to scour as many trails as possible. They were joined by Panamanian and Costa Rican Red Cross volunteers. The Costa Rican group alone combed 19 kilometers of rugged, mountainous jungle terrain. Hikers in Boquete — including but not limited to the indefatigable Bomberos — raked over local paths ceaselessly. And through it all, the Panamanian authorities poured thousands of men and women into the jungles, looking for any speck, any clue that would lead them to the girls.

On the hunt for Lisanne Froon and Kris Kremers.

On the hunt for Lisanne Froon and Kris Kremers.

Panama mobilized across all parts of its armed forces in the search for Lisanne and Kris. These men are from SENAFRONT, the National Border Police.

Panama mobilized across all parts of its armed forces in the search for Lisanne and Kris. These men are from SENAFRONT, the National Border Police.

About six weeks into the investigation, the Dutch upped their participation, sending in a specially trained search team, along with ten rescue and cadaver dogs.

Dutch "sniffer dogs" and their handlers arrive in Panama. Credit -- BBC

Dutch “sniffer dogs” and their handlers arrive in Panama. Credit — BBC

The dogs, it was said, could track human remains as old as nine months, even if they were sitting at the bottom of a river in high Rainy Season.

Well, by then it was Rainy Season. Both dogs and humans spent nine sweltering days in the jungle, enduring relentless heat and incapacitating downpours. Despite the conditions, the dogs registered several “hits,” all excitedly marked by the team with GPS coordinates. The heady bubble of initial enthusiasm quickly burst, however, as further investigation stalled. All the “hit” areas, it seemed, had been visited by other searchers before, some multiple times. Ground was being covered — but much of it was old ground.

Again, the Dutch mobilized unique resources, this time a group of criminal investigators specializing in foreign disappearances. They duly investigated and made an electrifying public pronouncement:

The women could not have simply disappeared from one of the trails.

Fueled by the Dutch declaration, people here in Boquete, in Holland, and all over the world had cause to fear the worst. Nobody knew what the “worst” might be, but by then everyone was openly speculating about it. There were reports of sightings with shadowy young men, allusions to telling cell phone records, a mysterious anti-bug lotion in Boquete that could “impair judgment” and “cause odd behavior.” Even the hypothesis that an earthquake caused a landslide burying the students.

As a mystery writer, I could not have developed more compelling plot elements. As part of the Boquete community, I was horrified by the newest rumors and wild speculations.

The families of Lisanne and Kris came to Panama. And returned to Holland, full of sad possibilities, empty of concrete leads.

A solemn candlelight march and prayer vigil were held in Boquete, our little town feeling the students’ loss keenly.

A candlelight march through Boquete. Credit -- BBC.

Credit — BBC.

More commemorations took place in Holland. A Facebook page and website for the girls were created, a foundation was established to help fund the ongoing search and the efforts of private investigators newly hired by the families. Local and international internet sites swam with conjecture.

Just as one might expect in fiction, the Panamanian authorities eventually came in for criticism, even from themselves. SINAPROC charged the Policia Nacional with inappropriately undertaking “procedures” in the girls’ room at the hostel, actions normally assigned to criminalists. “Evidence Contamination” was the new bugaboo of the investigation.

Had the Panamanian government undertaken thermal imaging from a satellite? The Dutch would have, a man from Holland insisted on his blog, if the disappearance had occurred in his country.

Second-guessing, back-stabbing, and over it all the words of the Dutch investigators echoed in everyone’s ears:

The women could not have simply disappeared from one of the trails.

In a novel, a statement like this would demand high action by the authorities. In real life, the exhausted searchers pressed on with their hunt over the merciless terrain.

Then, about a month ago, an Indian man and his wife, members of the semi-nomadic Gnabe-Bugle tribe, were planting rice on the shores of a river-fed pool, a day’s walk from Boquete, far across the Continental Divide, deep in the jungle.gnabe bugle It was hot work, and, after a few hours, they decided on a swim to cool off. As they were bathing, the wife noticed something odd in the weeds, and they went over to investigate.

There, fifteen hours away from Boquete, from civilization, in a section of jungle teeming with big cats and alive with four deadly snake species including the lethal pit viper, there was a shiny aqua blue backpack in pristine condition. Within: $83, two cell phones, sunglasses, two bras — and Lisanne Froon’s passport.

If this occurred in a work of fiction, it might have a low believability quotient. But it happened in real life. And it rocked the investigation.

There’s much more to the mystery of Kris Kremers and Lisanne Froon, and I’ll continue the story in an upcoming installment. Sad as this is on one level and compelling on another, it can also be instructive for us as writers. I’ll try to be as respectful as possible while I tell you next time about the amazing new developments in the case, including five eyewitnesses who completely contradict each other (one says, excusing any possible errors, that all Europeans look alike); a timeline also at odds with itself; and the Boquete herbalist who’s been branded a possible serial killer.

As they say, truth is sometimes stranger than fiction.

~~ Britt Vasarhelyi

33 thoughts on “Missing in Panama — A Mystery Deepens

  1. Could you please tell me the name of the hostel and what happened to the girl. A friend of my daughter’s was staying at a hostel in boquete and was kidnapped and drugged. 8 months later and he still remains at home. He suffered memory loss which caused him to fear his father, and couldn’t come home for some time because of seizures. Others in the hospital he was at had been taken for human trafficking and he was taken by the same people. I’m interested because of the way his school (it was a school mission trip) and the travel company are portraying the situation, at least in the paper. If you can respond, could it please be to my email? Thank you.

    Barb

    • Hi Barb, I saw your message on the board ofMostly Mystery, and I would like to know more about what happened to the young man you were telling about in the post. My friend Cristiano Zeviani went missing in Dolega, close to Boquete, when he went to show property on May 10, 2016. He is now missing 25 days. The there is a UK young man that has vanished without a trace as well, in 2009. This time, he went missing form he Majagua Hostal, close to Dolega. Could there be a connection ? Too much coincidence for my taste.

  2. Hi, my daughter is friends with another girl from Holland who was on that same trip. Is there an update on the missing girls sice you wrote this? Such a sad story… My heart aches for the the families. Thank you. Linda from California.

  3. The fingerprints on record with the Panamanian police, indicating a previous criminal record and the 2 bras and pairs of sunglasses in the backpack that have never gotten wet. All too neat and tidy next to a human pelvis. It just doesn’t feel right to me. Also the first attempt to reach 911 and the Dutch emergency number only two hours down the trail on a sunny clear day and an easy trail is off as is the timeline for later calls and photos. Too much time passes unless they were held somewhere and then released with no trail to follow, It just doesn’t “feel” right. This experienced old psychic smells a skunk.

    • There is another person missing now. As of Tuesday May 10th, 2016 My friend Cristiano Zeviani who is originally from Italy, disappeared as he was supposedly going to show some of his land to a potential buyer. The land is in Dolega, Chiriqui Province and lies next to the fast running El Caño de Dolega, a watershed thats used for potable water. Cristiano was driving a black Mitsubishi L200, double cabin.
      Cristiano is 48 years old, bald, has brown eyes, is build normal, measures around 180 centimetres or 5.10 .
      We are now coordinating search parties and his mother and business partner are coming form Italy to put pressure on the search.
      Any information is very welcome. Cristianos family and friends want him back in good health!

      • Knowing what happend to Kris and Lisanne, I truely hope that Cristiano will be found safe and sound soon. His mother must be extremely worried. Hopefully, the Panamanian authorities will co-operate in a candid manner. And I truely hope that the Italian authorities won’t accept any “crap” from the Panamanian authorities (as the Dutch did).

    • The bra’s and shorts found, showed no traces of bodily fluids, indicatiing that they were not wearing them at the time of death. In spite of this, the Dutch authorities assume that they must have fallen from a ridge or so and that they got stuck somewhere.

      Faling from a cliff with no clothes on? I don’t buy that.

  4. And then there is something else: the 12 Dutch sniffer dogs never sniffed the spot where the last normal photo of Kris was taken, that is situated 1 hour beyond the mirador of the pianista trail. They followed the orders not to proceed beyond the mirador. The reason was that at that time, everybody assumed that the girls could never have crossed the Cordillera. So why search any further?

    Twelve Dutch dogs, 18 of their Dutch trainers, travelled all the way from Holland. But they only reached the mirador and then they turned back.

  5. 25 days since the disappearance of my friend Cristiano Zeviani in Chiriqui!
    Yes, 25 days and no trace of him!
    Last seen in the area of El Caño de Dolega, where he went to show a property to an unknown interested party. His car was found back far away in the desolate area of Respinga in Cerro Punta without the license plate and window sticker. Not a trace of Cristiano, and the authorities keep telling us they have great leads but can’t tell us anything. This has been going on now since the investigation has started.
    Did you know that the then 35 year old Brit Alex Humphrey disappeared from Majagua, close to Dolega, in 2009. Last seen at the hostal of Majagua, where the little waterfall is. Not a trace of him still, either.

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  9. Well, as a retired Military Police Officer, and formerly assigned in Panama, and being there in 2008/09, I PERSONALLY seen something that wasn’t right in Boquete, that very well could connect these murders and disappearances. A New York girl, same age, similar looks, was just murdered not far from where this backpack was found. Good luck Panama with stonewalling the FBI….. Not going to happen. If I have to go there, and on my own dime and time, I WILL!!! I have an idea who MIGHT be doing these atrocities. And I am actively getting involved. None of the said scenario’s are possible. ESPECIALLY since the girls had a DOG with them!!! Whoever is doing this, time is running out for you.

    • brian i have studied and researched this inside and out . all this time has passed i cant believe it myself , i do not agree with the girls getting lost senairio and i would also be interested in gong down to panama.have you fugured anything else out since your last post ? It seems this case is fading

    • I think it probably a mix of the two main hypotheses.

      One of them got injured on the other side of the divide and couldn’t walk back up to the Mirador, so they used the mobiles, no joy with them, so probably decided to hunker down for the night.

      Then someone found them, but, unfortunately, they weren’t there to help :-(

      The only thing I can’t ‘get’ is why they strayed from any path, given that off-path would be heck of a struggle through foliage and they had no bush knives, and over the coming days the searchers followed the paths (whether they were the right paths…)…the girls must have been in that locale because they still had no signal and tried several times to call 911…and I can’t see any criminal letting them keep their phones.

  10. I lived in Estado de Hererra, Panama for three years beginning in 1994. When I traveled around the country for my work or vacation I always traveled alone. At the time, I did not feel uncomfortable traveling alone in Panama, people were generally kind with me. I was 25, and I was a bird, very Naïve is more like it, (I am 49 now). I felt no concern traveling alone as a young, blonde, attractive, studious, scientific young woman from the United States. During the last 3 months of my 3 years work in Panama I decided to visit the beautiful mountain village of Bouquette. I had heard that there was a history of Polish women who entered the mountain village during WWII and I wanted to discover if this was factual. I was curious, because my family is Polish and I was told “I looked Polish” more than once when I was living in Panama. I would always ask the person what they knew about the Polish people in Panama and they would describe Bouquette.
    I was on another typically long, dangerous Panamanian bus ride for this trip to Bouquette. I was tired. When we arrived closer to Bouquette , we stopped in a bigger town with a bus station.I was on the bus sitting in the back waiting for the bus to continue on to Bouquette. I did not leave the bus at this stop.
    A man got on the bus, smiled right at me, walked toward me on the bus and then grabbed my breast. He began speaking to me in a dialect I did not understand. The local people on the bus were watching, silent. He was talking at me loudly. Then he signaled me to go with him. He was loud, pushy. I refused. He left the bus. An old lady looked at me and said in Spanish that he was a warning. I was so offended by his touch, I initally didn’t pay much attention to the dama’s words. I sat there as the bus continued on to Bouquette. When it became the ladies turn to get off the bus, she looked at my eyes directly and said again that he was a warning, I heard her say the word peligroso and then she left the bus. I listened to her words that time-they were certainly meant for me. When the bus arrived to Bouquette I checked into the most exspensive Inn in Bouquette and stayed in the room all night. I told the owner I was sick, and had food delivered to my room. I was freezing cold, absolutely frigid in the room all night. I was scared too, very scared. I felt threatened and not-safe.
    I felt very warned not to go out in Bouquette at all. That local lady made sure I understood that somehow I was in danger. I stayed in my room all night and left the very next day. At the time I felt embarrassed to myself, but now as a grown woman I know that was my intuition leading me to safety. Someone bad was watching me move toward Bouquette and someone good protected me from whatever evil was waiting for me. Never since my experience in Boquette have I felt such a strong warning come through. In retrospect, I truly believe that there was great potential for me to be harmed while in Bouquette if I walked in the mountains or enjoyed the river as a tourist and as I planned. I was warned. I was very Lucky, I am very Lucky. I have never spoke of this experience to anyone until I came across this information in these articles. My experience is small, my hope is that it could somehow help someone. I have never returned to Bouquette. Spooked.

    • Scary stuff!

      I guess it is a similar story worldwide, really, ‘foreigners’ come and go all the time, so if someone disappears not much is thought about it at first…look at this case, it seems some thought that they were at a party!

      I don’t think we’ll ever know the truth, but I do think whatever the reason the primary act that prevented them coming back was an injury to one of them, Kris is obviously in the vanguard and in some photos looks like she is waiting for Lisanne, and reading around the internet there is some thinking that Lisanne was a little ill at the time of the hike.

      It could just be that the dynamics between the two weren’t balanced and Kris hurried along into an accident, or Lisanne rushing to catch up hurt herself. Once either were hurt on the other side of the divide, the injured party may not have been able to make it back up the slopes to the Mirador, leaving her friend with the choice of carrying on and leaving her friend alone, or staying with her friend.

      What happens next is the question…

  11. If one of them was injured early on, it sure would’ve been easier to track back than how far they wound up from the Divide, miles away. They wouldn’t have made it that far injured. The injury must’ve come later on based on their eventual distance past the Divide.

  12. Looks to me like the Dyatlow Pass incident : lots of facts, lots of data, but nothing fits together :

    Time gap

    The problem is NOT that the pictures were taken at night or that they used a flashlight of the digital camera to threaten wild animals :

    If I got lost in the jungle I would use the flashlight to see what´s coming, that´s for sure : large snakes, spiders and cats. But I would do it the FIRST night. The girls used it only the SEVENTH night. Why that ? The first nights they were not scared at all ? The first night alone in a jungle would scare the shit out of me !
    And if I had to walk my way out of the jungle I would do it by NIGHT. Humidity and dehydration is a very serious problem in a jungle. If you cross a desert by foot, you´d definitely do it at night and not by day !

    What still puzzles me is the time gap between the pictures taken at the first day they got lost and the eleventh day. I just don´t get it ! Imagine the situation. They were in a very bad situation. But not one single picture, no audio recordings with the cell phones, no documentation about the situation whatsoever for seven days. NOTHING ! Are you kidding me ? Those kids grew up with all that electronic stuff. On the net you can see pictures of them playing cards with friends, swimming , partying etc.

    So from now on I have to speculate.
    What if there was no time gap. What if EVERYTHING happened the first night. What if a third party was involved and changed all the dates in the camera (and the cell phone logs) of the night pictures. All the night pictures (at least where you can see something) look to me like an ENCOUNTER with something or somebody.

    The official report mentions a lot of unknown fingerprints on the backpack, the camera and the cell phones that do not belong to the two girls. Well, of course, they could belong to the people who found all the stuff. This was not checked ? Are you kidding me ? And we all know by now that one crucial single picture is missing.

    In addition one has to remember : The only proof of use of their cell phones AFTER the first night is the cell phone log. There was no connection with any station that could serve as a REGISTERED proof that they really used their cell phones after the first night !

    Cliff

    The official version says : one of them fell down a steep cliff. It must have happened the first day when they called emergeny for the first time. It was mentioned in the official reports that the cliff is at least 30 metres high. Well, if you fell down a cliff so high and hit solid ground you´re DEAD. At least you suffer severe and heavy injuries that makes it impossible to go on for another seven days ! This is ridicoluos.
    But what happened then. The other one climbed down to help her friend ? If she could climb down why not up again to get help. At that point they were still on the trail. And it is highly improbable that both fell down simultaniously.
    There is one picture, taken at night (the 90 night pictures series) where you can see one of the girls STANDING in the dark. (enhanced, done by forensics). With heavy injuries you don´t get up and stand in the flashlight like this !

    Human remains

    Of course it makes perfect sense that a decomposing body in the jungle attracts wildlife. Big cats may have torn apart the bodies and/or dragged parts of it into the jungle. The rest was taken away by other animals or by running water. I do not have a problem with that. It explains why only small fragments of the bodies were found.
    But if all of this was true : The coroner could not find a single animal trace on the pelvis. It was like polished. No traces at all whatsoever. Are you kidding me ? Even if the pelvis was the part of the body that was not eaten and taken away by running water, it would have shown heavy signs of dragging over ground.

    Backpack

    The woman who found it said it had not been there the day before. So it suddenly appeared out of nowhere the right time the right place. And was in perfect condition. Come on, are you kidding me ?

    Other problems : Was the water bottle in the backpack empty or filled when it was found ? If it was filled, then they obviously didn´t have a problem with water shortage and dehydration. Maybe it was still the water they brought with them. If it was and not rain or water from the river, then the official story would have a BIG problem. This was not checked either ? Are you kidding me ?

    To summarize : I am not saying a third party was involved or that there was foul play. But the whole story smells, if not stinks

  13. Addition to my previous post :
    Yet other problems :

    -The dog was gone : Why ?
    The dog apparently found the way home. If they got lost, why not use the dog as a guide to find the way back home. Even if one of the girls was severely injured the other could have gone for help with the help of the dog (That was obviously the reason why the dog had been with them)
    Conclusion : the dog was gone when the two girls really needed its help. Why ? Did anybody check the state of the dog when it returned ?

    -The panties of Kremers found in the river :
    Maybe Kremers suffered from diarrhea and had to wash the panties in the river due to obvious reasons. In order to do that she had to take them off. Being sick, maybe she kept going in her underwear. But how did she lose them ? Of course, due to high humidity, the girls had want to wash themselves, if there was a possibility to do it. When found, the panties obviously were in good condition showing NO signs of body fluids and were not torn apart : If somebody´s got diarrhea it will be difficult to wash out all the dirt. Body fluids in clothing are difficult to treat, even with a detergent. Nevertheless it is hard to believe that a female in a hostile environment like a jungle will deliberately take off her panties without being forced to do so.

    -The picture that was taken when the human remains were found show TWO different kind of boots. How´s that ? I always thought only Kremers´ boot was found.
    REMARKABLE : Have you noticed the bootstraps on Kremers´ boot ? Like she did them yesterday ! Very Strange !

  14. A possible explanation why there was no documentation on the camera.

    Let´s assume the official timeline is true (i. e. the timeline that is set by the phone log data and the dates that go with the pictures). So we know there were no pictures on the camera documenting what was happening after day 1 to day 8 (the time gap).
    I have to admit I do not know how the Canon digital camera works. Let´s assume the flashlight ONLY operates when pictures are taken :
    The night pictures were taken with high probability at the monkey bridge in complete darkness and it was raining. Suppose one of the girls was injured or even wounded (one picture obviously supports this asumption). If she was bleeding, then they were in desperately need of a light source to check the wound. The only light source was the flashlight of the camera (the phones could have served the same purpose but they wanted to save battery power. Remember : with high probability there was only one phone left !).
    But to make the flash operate one has to take pictures. Assume the girls MADE a thorough documentation what happened to them the previous days (lots of pictures taken). But then the memory might have been full (How large was the memory of the Canon ? Does anybody have information on that ?). In order to get the flash working they HAD (in an active way !) to erase pictures from the camera (or even the whole memory). That would explain the complete absence of any pictures from the days before. It would of course not explain the absence of documentation from the cell phones (e.g possible audio recordings)

    My assumptions are :
    They were in DESPERATE need of a light source (for any reason whatsoever)
    The camera flash operates only when pictures are taken (I dont know. Is that true ?)
    The memory of the digital camera was (almost) full

    What could be crucial here is the chronological order the night pictures were taken :
    Were the first pictures taken in that night the ones where you can see something (and afterwards the dark pictures) ? Or the other way round ? Or mixed ? Does anybody have information on this ?

    We know that the first pictures were taken in rapid succession and then there was a time lap of several minutes with no pictures taken. But that could be explained by the full memory. The girl who took the pictures first had to erase the memory which took a while in order to continue. It would also explain why most of the night pictures were just black. They just needed the light of the flash. If my assumptions are wrong then we are back with the question : Why no documentation/pictures between day 1 and day 8

    What caused the bleeding wound or any other injury ? I cannot believe the girls were stupid enough to use the slippery monkey bridge to cross the river by night (unless, of course, they were forced do to it). And the very important question here is : Had they already crossed the river or were they still on the other side and about to cross the river ? On which side of the bridge were they when they took the pictures ? In the direction they were going or the direction they came from ? Is it visible on the night pictures ? If they hadn´t crossed the river, where did the head wound come from ? Any information on this ?

    I still have massive problems understanding the official timeline :
    The sources say that an (admittedly) experienced hiker needs 5-8 hours to get to the monkey bridge (from the place where the last „normal“ photos were taken on April 1st). If both girls were still well and in good condition they would have made it earlier to the bridge (in fact much earlier). If one or both were seriously injured (that would of course explain the first emergency calls), like a broken leg or foot, why the hell did they move on (if it was possible at all) and not stay where they were, waiting for help ? Or even try to go back the way the came ? The only explanation is that already in the first evening/night they had gone too far, crossing deep trenches and rivers several times. Going back with e.g. a broken leg/foot is hardly possible in this case. But that would mean that they got stuck in a rather SMALL area of the jungle for SEVEN days. It is hard to believe that a rescue team or the local indian people should not have spotted them.

  15. Most people have speculated that they called 112 or 911 because they got injured the first day.
    But that´s NOT a necessary conclusion : They walked into the jungle for hours and suddenly they realized they got lost. So they called emergency : Get us the hell out of here, we´re lost. They walked on (the circular path theory or some other strange psychological hypotheses). But then they should have made it to the monkey bridge MUCH earlier. To find the monkey bridge at all, they must have stayed somehow on or besides the path otherwise they would have found a needle in a haystack ! Very unlikely ! Again, as I have speculated, what if they made it to the bridge the same day (or night) ?
    Maybe there, by crossing the river at night an accident happened. But I just cannot believe they tried that bridge at night. They could have done it the other day by daylight and in a safe way. Of course an accident could have happened by daylight also. I personally assume there were no injuries/wounds etc. until the night of April 8th .
    Nevertheless, it would mean they were at the bridge for seven days (if the official timeline is true. I still doubt it !). And no one found them ? Come on ! A bridge like this means more or less regular thru traffic (other tourists, local indians). And it would explain why they didn´t move for seven days. Because they thought : „Hey, there´s a bridge, someone will pass the next hours or days.“ Makes a lot of sense to me. And they didn´t have the problem of dehydration with the river passing nearby. Additionally this scenario could explain, at least partially, why there were no pictures on the camera from April 1st to April 8th : They were unharmed and in relative good condition at the same spot in the jungle. There is then not that much to document.

    Then, if the official timeline is true, in the night from April 7th to April 8th, something DECISIVE and UNUSUAL SUDDENLY happened THERE (this is the only conclusion you can draw from the mere existence of the night pictures). From then on, the entire story is a black hole. And, to repeat myself, it stinks three miles against the wind. Open to any speculation. The bridge, the river and the surrounding area are the key to an understanding of the whole thing.

    Most people only mention the smart phone logs. How important they are. I think it is much more important to understand how the digital camera works. When, why and where the pictures were taken and in what order. To me, the night pictures look like an encounter with something or somebody (of course; hey, they are on a trail !). I stick to that. If „it“ had been friendly, the girls would have been saved and were still alive.

  16. Suppose there was no crime. Death either by accident or by wildlife (irrespective of what follows)
    Sources say, there are various kind of lethal snakes in the jungle. Suppose one of the girls got bitten the night April 8th early in the morning. This would explain the desperate need of a light source that night. With snakes like that death occurs rapidly.
    So there is one dead body ON THE ROCKS/RIVER BANKS at the wire bridge were the last pictures were taken. What happens next ? The surviving girl either moves the body (why should she do that ?) or leaves it where it is. Now they are one week in the jungle without food. The remaining girl must have been rather weak and under normal circumstances the girls weight is approx. 50-70 Kgs. She leaves the body where it is. Does she move on or does she stay ? Well, they were very close friends. And she is weak, maybe sick, and desperate. She stays until the end (last phone activation 3 days later !). Even if she went on (most likely downstream the river) the following discussion is not touched by it.
    What happened to the bodie(s) ?
    Scenario 1 : The bodies are washed into the river. Even if this was the case (Imagine : the bodies are rather heavy. I doubt that heavy rain can do it), the bodies would have been found as a whole and not broken up into tiny pieces. (even when decomposition had already reduced the weight of the bodies). Very unlikely ! I
    Scenario 2 : Wildlife (big cats) is attracted by the decomposing bodies.
    The bodies are dragged into the jungle (not far but far enough). But then it is highly unlikely that ANYTHING of the bodies is found downstream in the river. I am not quite sure of this but I guess the rescue teams searched the area and found nothing
    The bodies stay on the rocks/river banks, the (loosely connected) remains are washed into the river (obviously there was nothing at the bridge). But for a big wild cat it would be a rather unusual behaviour. If this was true much of the skeleton had to be found somewhere along the river (downstream) and not just a few pieces. Especially the skulls and heavy bones would have been found somewhere, and of course the remains would have been scattered with animal signs all over
    What happened to the backpack ?
    Scenario 1 : the surviving girl stayed with her dead friend until the end
    The backpack was not found at the bridge but downstream. The only (NATURAL) way to get there was by floating down the river. It was nevertheless in perfect condition when found. The cell phones and the sunglasses did not have a broken glass (!!!) and the camera was working, no electronic elements inside were harmed. As I have already mentioned earlier, this assumption is nothing but ridiculous !
    Scenario 2 : The surviving girl went downstream the river (the remains were found there, so this assumption makes sense). But she must have been died somewhere along that path. Because the area where the remains were finally found was searched extensively and no complete corpse was found, she must have died somewhere in between. But again : In this case the backpack also had to float down the river to get to the place where it was finally found. Without any harm in perfect condition.
    All the scenarios I mentioned seem rather unlikely. And it doesn´t matter if it was a lethal accident or wildlife. Everything brings us back to the crime scenario.
    But : There are no bodies. No bodies, no crime. That´s what „it“ intended.

    Admittedly there is one point which strongly supports the scenarios I described above. A lot of phone checks (switch on and off) were made after that night (April 7th -April 10th ). Of course : One girl dead, one in a very bad condition, trying desperately seeking help (remember : an emergency call is always possible without a pin !). So these data in the cell phone log make perfect sense. If there was a crime against the girls in that night, why all these phone checks for three days.
    Maybe „it“ was looking for any proof on that phone that would have revealed its existence. But „it“ had no pin. So „it“ would have checked the phones maybe two or three times without success and then would have stopped. But so many checks ?
    NEVERTHELESS, all the scenarios above do not answer the fundamental questions everybody had from the very beginning. I have added some more.
    Studying the case for so many days, I am again back at the point where I started days ago.

  17. The cell phone usage after April 7th
    Sources say that Kremers´ phone was switched on and off a lot of times after April 7th and several attempts of a wrong pin were recorded. (How many ? Any information on this ?)

    I am not familiar with all that new electronic stuff, so correct me if I´m wrong :

    when switched on you get a message „no signal“ on the diplay of the phone if there is no signal (i.e. you definitely know if you are connected to a net or not)
    if you do not enter a pin you get a message on the display that nevertheless emergency calls are possible (which means the girls KNEW it)

    Why do I want to discuss this ? Some people said the reason the wrong pin was entered was that Kremers was dead or unable and that Froon did not know the pin of her cell phone (it was Kremers´ phone that was used after April 7th ). But from the above said this makes little sense. The first attempts to call emergency were made with entering the pin. But I gess this was done by them automatically : switch phone on, enter pin and then go on. They did it a thousand times before without being in need to call emergency. But after April 7th the situation is completely different. Why should Froon want to enter a pin at all : she didn´t know it and there was no need to do it (if she just wanted to make an emergency call). Obviously Kremers would have entered the correct pin. And : there was no signal . This makes it even stranger ! Nevertheless recordings show that somebody tried to do it. Why ? One conclusion that can be drawn is that not one of the girls but a third party used the phone to try to check what´s on it (i.e. not to make any calls).
    BUT maybe she just wanted to make an audio recording for her parents (she was dying !). If she only wanted to take pictures she could have used the camera. Nevertheless this explanation does NOT fit into the scheme of the official timeline : No documentation on the camera /cell phones for seven days.

  18. John DeSouza interview

    Listened to the interview he gave some years ago yesterday (you can find it on youtube).
    Very interesting. He strongly advocates the crime hypotheses. His central argument was the time gap. He was VERY determined regarding that point. I got the impression that he knew more than he was willing to talk about in the public.

    If it was a crime, the killer („it“) would have had to major problems : To get rid of the bodies and to make it look like an accident. Some sort of „Girls went into the jungle, girls got lost, girls died, girls were eaten by the tigers“ – stuff
    Why not put the bodies into the jungle and let the jungle handle the problem ?
    Well : The girls were abused, maybe tortured and that of course leaves marks on their bodies. There is a small probability but nevertheless a probability that somebody might have found the (complete) bodies. „It“ cannot take the risk. And imagine : The get rid of the bodies by putting them to a remote place of the jungle you have to GO there (maybe several miles, ESPECIALLY if they were hold captive on a ranch). There is always a probabilty that you meet somebody along the way or that somebody watches you.
    You do not have such problems if you dismember/dissolve the bodies and then just take a few remainig pieces to the jungle as „proof“ for the accident hypotheses. Putting the backpack somewhere is also no problem because, of course, you can put the backpack/belongings of the girls into another backpack. On those trails in the jungle a guy with a backpack is quite common.

    The night pictures

    Why such a situation (night, rain) ? Well : to create the impression that the girls were in a very bad situation (desperate, waiting for help, slowly dying : the night („uhh“), the rain, the markers, the paper, Kremers´ hair etc). That was just a big show for the public, a fake. Kremers´ shorts and her EMPTY boot. So she undressed before she died ? Come on !
    You always have to remember (a point DeSouza stresses several times in his interview. I, more than ever, think it is THE crucial point and the key to an understanding of the whole case) :
    After the first day there is NO documentation/pictures for 11 days, except the night pictures. On that pictures there are NO girls/persons. There is NOT A SINGLE proof that the girls were in the jungle AT ALL or that they took those night pictures ! Anybody could have taken those pictures ! The cell phone logs are not a proof either. Anybody could have switched them on and off from time to time.
    Even if a pin was entered : „it“ might have forced the girls to do it. There was no risk for „it“ because there was no signal.

    EVERYTHING had to look like a jungle accident. If the girls had disappeared without a trace, everybody would have suspected foul play from the very beginning.

    Some people have complained about dismembering the bodies, treating it with some chemical and getting rid of the remains would have been too much of an effort to hide the killer´s existence. What stupid argument is that ? A possible killer would have made ANY effort to make it look like an accident : Kidnapping, rape, torture and murder. It got as nasty as that ! And maybe „it“ already had exercise in doing so.

    I think DeSouza is right. The crime hypotheses is the only hypotheses where you do not get stuck with all those questions/contradictions you have when considering an accident hypotheses. Always take the simplest hypotheses that fits the data. And, come on, he is a retired FBI agent, those people a very well trained professionals with a lot of experience. I would listen to his arguments.

  19. The first emergency calls on April 1st

    Sources say that on the first day of their hike at around 5 p.m. local time the first emergency calls were made. What I found rather strange is that they tried to call emergency, but they just did it ONCE. ONE try, no signal, that´s it ! No further attempts. Just ONCE. If I were in such a situation I would have tried to change location, looking for a signal/connectivity of my cell phone and definitely would have tried SEVERAL attempts to make a call, not just once. I have never bought the argument about saving battery power. Not in such a situation (there obviously must have been a reason for that calls, how bad whatsoever). I just cannot believe the girls went „O.K. , no signal, let´s save battery power. Unfortuately, then, we have to spent the night alone in a pitch black jungle with a lot of bad things around us. Let´s make another try tomorrow“. And maybe „Lets send the dog away to get help“. If I had to spent the night in a hostile environment like a jungle I definitely would not send the dog away. When it returned home there was no message with the dog.

    The more I think about the official timeline, the more ridiculous it gets.

  20. I feel like there is never enough commentary on the evidence that the girls were trying to attract attention — like the SOS written in toilet paper and the mirror in the middle; or even the two red bags on the branch. They were hoping that helicopters would be out searching for them. And THIS is why they flashed the camera so many times — because perhaps they thought they heard a helicopter in the night, and they wanted to attract attention. Did any helicopters even go out looking for them? Anyway, they were never found and they died. I do think that one of them was injured and died first (hence the pin attempts – the other girl trying the deceased friend’s phone). It could also be that they took some pictures to show where they were and thought they could text those images to someone to help find them. But the camera flashes seems clearly an attempt to be seen.

  21. I have posted my theory on https://www.websleuths.com/forums/threads/the-tragic-story-of-lisanne-froon-by-local-dutch-channel-bnn.306659/page-4

    I think with high chance they both were eaten by the same jaguar.
    The idea came after learning the scale of the “marker” twig, the red plastic beeing grocery bags i think it was a stick to scare/fend off animals.

    Cause why photograph your own marker, at night.

    Some things supporting this theory could be the jaguar release program in the area.

    If there was a wound the back of kris head, well that seems in line with pictures from documented jaguar attacks on humans.

    Sure jaguar attacks on humans are rare, it’s also rare for humans to camp in it’s territory without protection.

    On videos of jaguars hunting capybara or cayman they are able to appear suddenly out of nowhere and quickly deliver kill with crush off skulll

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