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Stocks Down on Wall Street; Snowden on the Run; Interview with Mark Zaid; U.S. POW's Dad Asks Taliban for Peace; LeBron on Heat Repeat

Aired June 24, 2013 - 09:30   ET



CAROL COSTELLO, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, thank you so much if being with me. I'm Carol Costello. Stories we're watching right now in NEWSROOM at 31 minutes past the hour. As the opening bell rings on Wall Street, investors are expecting another rough day. Let's head to New York stock exchange and Alison Kosik. It's a little better, huh?

ALISON KOSIK, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Just a little bit, but brace yourself. Wall Street looks like it's got a bad case of the Mondays. So much for shaking off last week's blues. We are watching the Dow fall about 95 points in the first moments of the trading day. Stocks here are following in the heels of overseas markets, which tanked overnight.

China is a big source of anxiety today. The People's Bank of China. That's the equivalent of the Federal Reserve here. It told the country's biggest banks to rein in risky loans and get their balance sheets under control. You see the fear is that a cash crunch will hurt the world's second biggest economy.

The big worry here continues to be about our own situation with our own central bank and when the fed could pull back on its millions of dollars it is pumping into the economy every month. You roll all that together and get ready for a long day of red arrows, Carol.

COSTELLO: You'll be busy. Alison Kosik, thanks so much.

Up next in NEWSROOM Edward Snowden on the run from the United States. But what happens if the U.S. catches him? Talk to a lawyer who specializes in such things, next.


COSTELLO: One week after the death of a friend of Aaron Hernandez, the New England Patriots tight end remains a focus in his murder investigation. Authorities searched Hernandez's home again on Saturday, for the second time since Odin Lloyd's body was found. The investigators left with brown paper evidence bags. CNN's Susan Candiotti is outside Hernandez's home in North Attleborough, Massachusetts. Good morning, Susan.

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Carol. No new documents have been filed at the courthouse in connection with the murder investigation. And so far, no police activity here today. But it was quite a different story on Saturday when investigators searched the home of Alex Hernandez (sic).


CANDIOTTI: Except for a quick backyard appearance be Saturday night, an embattled yet smiling Aaron Hernandez is keeping a very low profile. On Sunday, his SUV parked in the driveway eventually was moved into his garage. Others making food runs for him.

On Saturday, the same SUV got a once over from investigators, executing their second search in a week. While police aren't calling the popular tight end a suspect in the shooting death of his friend, semi pro player Odin Lloyd, Hernandez is under a microscope.

Authorities sweeping through his house. Taking away at least a dozen evidence bags. At one point, calling in a locksmith and bringing in police dogs. During the search, Hernandez spotted peeking out his front door window to get a look at the action.

The pressure is on. As part of the murder investigation, police also seizing surveillance videos from a strip club in nearby Providence, Rhode Island.

Back at the murder scene, less than a mile from the football player's home, the public's kept at a distance. The shooting victim's family is following every development.

What do you make of the police being out to Mr. Hernandez's house a second time to search?

SHIRLEY PHILIP, VICTIM'S COUSIN'S WIFE: Whatever it is they took out, I hope it is going to help us, and heal us, and put a closure to this. He was just left near that field like he was a piece of trash. Trash. Not even a human. That was my nephew. That was my nephew. Someone took his life. For what? I just want to understand.


CANDIOTTI: The attorney for Aaron Hernandez has had nothing to say and issued a statement last week adding that he will have no comment until the investigation of his client is over. Carol?

COSTELLO: Susan Candiotti reporting live for us this morning.

U.S. lawmakers are telling NSA spy Edward Snowden to turn himself in. What would happen if he actually did? We'll talk about that next.


COSTELLO: This morning, we're following Mr. Catch-me-if-you-can. Edward Snowden. In a word, he's disappeared, we think. He was supposed to leave Russia for Cuba, on his way to Ecuador, but he didn't get on the plane. Still in Moscow's airport? We think so. At this point, no one knows anything for sure. Lawmakers here urge Russia to turn him over. They urge Snowden to turn himself in and so far, no chance of that. Joining us now an attorney who specializes in national security issues. Mark Zaid is also the executive director of the James Madison Project, a watchdog group that focuses on intelligence gathering and government wrongdoing. Good morning.


COSTELLO: So American lawmakers say Snowden should turn himself in. Let's say he has a change of heart and he does that. He's charged with theft of government property and espionage. What would happen?

ZAID: He'd be taken over to the eastern district of Virginia, which is a courthouse right outside of D.C. that has historically been handling many of the espionage cases we've seen in the last few years and going back. He'll have a fair trial. He has three charges so far. They're very standard. They were certainly expected. He's going to, obviously, make it difficult for himself by his very candid admissions over the last few weeks that he was, obviously, responsible for these classified leaks.

COSTELLO: I know the cases are different, but we know what happened to Bradley Manning, the army soldier who handed over thousands of documents to Wikileaks. He was held in solitary confinement without charge, I think for years. He said he was tortured and finally he goes to court and he faces life in prison. So, I'm sure Snowden has paid attention to that. Why would he turn himself in? Why would he expect to get a fair trial?

ZAID: Well, Manning, of course, is in the military system. Our military justice system is an excellent system but it is different from the civilian system. I mean, it's ironic, of course, that there are these concerns he might be tortured here when he's actually moving back and forth into countries who the United Nations held at times to actually conduct torture against dissidence and the others. So there is a sense of irony there.

Look, we have one of the best criminal justices systems in the world, especially for those where the case is strong against them. There are so many protections. Snowden will have various avenues and legal defenses, like I said, it will be a difficult case. But, if, in fact, he wants to be, as he seems to portray himself to be sort of this martyr and this individual who wants to disclose information, one of the best ways he can do it is to come back for trial and have a pedestal or podium to speak on.

COSTELLO: Don't you think he's kind of having fun with this. I mean the U.S. -- United States has now revoked his passport and they urged Russia to turn him over and Russia's not done that so far. They urged Hong Kong and China to turn him over and China just said, oh, bye, Mr. Snowden you can go and fly to Russia. It's okay. Representative Peter King just came out and said, where is the president in all of this? why can't we catch this one guy? We know where he is.

ZAID: Look, it's a very difficult situation. Extradition is all about politics. Politics in all of these different countries. And there's a lot of manipulation and banter that is going on between our various countries. Now, it's interesting that this actually could have all been avoided if Mr. Snowden had just gone to certain members of Congress, particularly in the Senate, like Senator Wyden or Senator Paul and disclosed all the information to them. Because they could --

COSTELLO: But we heard from -- we heard from other whistle blowers who said they went that route and they were punished for it.

ZAID: Right.

COSTELLO: And I'm sure Edward Snowden heard about them, too.

ZAID: Well, the difference is that if they had -- if he had disclosed the information to certain senators who have, obviously, made it very clear that they're concerned about this program and in fact, have somewhat applauded Edward Snowden, that they could have taken that information and read it into the congressional record from the senate floor. And they would have been protected by the speech and debate clause for operating on legislative activities and been immune.

That way Mr. Snowden wouldn't have been in trouble, the senators wouldn't have been in trouble. The public would know the same information. We could have the debate we're having today. And there wouldn't be any concern of prosecution. That happened in the Pentagon Papers case 40 years ago.

The question is, I would ask to some of the senators if they're that concerned about whistle blowers who have classified information, I've got a number of clients I can bring up there today to disclose information to them.

COSTELLO: Ok, but -- but all in all, hasn't this just become embarrassing for the United States? It's just embarrassing now, isn't it?

ZAID: Well look, from a foreign policy standpoint there is no question that Ecuador, Russia, China -- they're enjoying this. These are pokes in the eye to the United States, United Kingdom, some other countries with Mr. Assange, with Sweden as well since Ecuador is giving him shelter in their embassy in London and we're going to see that, Cuba, as well, obviously.

And that's why I say it's a political issue. It can change on a dime. So, even if Mr. Snowden goes to whether Ecuador or Cuba and gets asylum, as our relations with these countries improve over a period of time, we may very well see Mr. Snowden being handed over.

COSTELLO: We'll see, national security attorney, Mark Zaid thank you so much for joining us this morning.

ZAID: Thank you, Carol.

COSTELLO: Still ahead in the NEWSROOM how LeBron James spends his time off the court during the playoffs.


LEBRON JAMES, MIAMI HEAT: I read through 24 a few seasons of that, I watched a lot of the old Bulls finals games.


COSTELLO: Rachel Nichols' one-on-one exclusive interview with LeBron James, next.


COSTELLO: Checking our "Top Stories" at 50 minutes past the hour.

The father of kidnapped marine Bowe Bergdahl made an impassioned plea for his son's release.


ROBERT BERGDAHL, BOWE BERGDAHL'S FATHER: The people in Afghanistan -- (inaudible) may the peace of God and the blessings that come from God, be upon you. May we somehow after 12 long years find peace in Afghanistan so that our soldiers and our American personnel can come home.


COSTELLO: Robert Bergdahl was speaking at a rally for his son in Idaho. Bergdahl is the only American prisoner of war held in Afghanistan. Recently U.S. officials said discussions of a possible prisoner exchange with the Taliban might -- might take place in the coming days.

A transgender first grader has won the right to use the girl's restroom at her school. Coy Mathis was born a boy but identifies as a girl. Coy's parents took the case to the Colorado Rights Division after Eagle Side Elementary banned Coy from the girl's bathroom. Coy had been home schooled during the court proceedings he will now or she will now return to school.

Living paycheck to paycheck -- well you're not alone. says roughly 76 percent of Americans are in the same boat. Many have little to no emergency savings and the savings rate of Americans remains about the same as three years ago.

Minnesota is not in the clear just yet. The state could see more storms like the one this weekend that caused damage in Minneapolis. This morning about 72,000 Excel Energy customers are still without power. The utility hopes to have all power restored by Wednesday.

NEWSROOM continues in a minute.


COSTELLO: LeBron James is basking in the glow of back to back NBA titles and MVP finals awards, but amid the glory, he's also apologizing to our very own Rachel Nichols. Rachel --

RACHEL NICHOLS, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Carol, we hold people accountable here at CNN. We do not let things slide. COSTELLO: You're a tough woman Rachel.

NICHOLS: That's right. That's right I was able to sit down and interview LeBron in the days after his championship; always so much fun to spend time with athletes in that situation. And you know this is a guy who faces such intense scrutiny that he actually checks out of social media, gets himself off the Internet, gives away his phone to a family member during the playoffs so he doesn't see all the commentary around him because it can just mess with your head.

But the flip side of that intensity is that when you win, you win big. He is having a good time. Take a look.


JAMES: Last year you kind of -- the time went by so fast. You know and it's like, wow, did I really just -- it's gone. It's gone like that. So I want to make sure I take full advantage of this one.

NICHOLS: After you won your title last year, you said it was the toughest thing you had ever done. And then after you won the title this year you said you were going to go back and tell the guy from last year.

JAMES: Right.

NICHOLS: No, no, no, this is the toughest thing I've ever done. Why?

JAMES: Right so I guess, I want to say I apologize to you because I lied to you last year.

NICHOLS: You did, directly to my face.

JAMES: This one right here was definitely tougher. I'll tell you one thing, I love the feeling.

NICHOLS: I know that during the playoff you tried to tune out all that outside noise and that you get off social media. And that you turn in your phone and that kind of thing.

JAMES: Right, right.

NICHOLS: So what do you do?

JAMES: I watch a lot of old basketball finals games, some playoff games. I watch some TV series and some TV shows. I ripped through 24 a few seasons of that. I watched a lot of the old Bulls finals games.

NICHOLS: So Michael Jordan and Kiefer Sutherland got you through these playoffs?

JAMES: Got me through it. Got me through it, yes got me through it. That's pretty good.

NICHOLS: You're -- here is your high school sweet heart just to people who don't know that, you guys have two sons. You joked the night after, that you won the title that if you hadn't won, you're getting married this summer and you might have had to call off the wedding. I would like to know what your fiancee thought about that.

JAMES: She would -- she would have dragged me by my collar no matter how I looked to get up there and say I do. So she runs the house.

NICHOLS: You've been in the public eye since you were 16 years old. When you came down to Miami, it was the first time you had ever been away from home.

JAMES: Yes it was --

NICHOLS: I mean you know (inaudible) that kid that this man is getting married. It's a big change.

JAMES: Even though I played it for Cleveland for seven years, I still lived in my hometown of Akron. So I was in Akron for 25 straight years. And that's all I knew. All my friends, and my family. And I made that change it was very challenging for me. It's made me I guess grow and it's made me -- made me comfortable and playing the game of basketball at a high level.

NICHOLS: Being more of a grown up now, being more comfortable and being an adult, it can't be a coincidence that you feel that way off the court and professionally you're in the best time professionally of your life winning two championships.

JAMES: Right. Timing. Timing. I just try to take full advantage of it.


NICHOLS: You know, I thought that was so interesting Carol. Of course nothing against the state of Ohio or Akron where LeBron still has a very large home he spends his summers in. But when anybody is forced to leave home for the first time, whenever that is, and you're in your 20s and you try to make your way in the world and you deal with those challenges. Being in a new place with different rules and different people that you have to deal with and ask for, for things, you grow up and you change. And he has done that and the fact that it does coincide with his most success professionally, not a coincidence at all.

COSTELLO: You know, what's interesting, I'm from that part of Ohio -- I'm from northeast Ohio, so it hurt me when LeBron left. It really did. I think there was always an impression that he was such an old soul because frankly even at 16, he seemed mature to us.

NICHOLS: Yes. No question. And he was a mature kid. But he was a kid. And the decision certainly is something that he looks back on and says he regrets the way he handled it. He was 25 years old. There is a lot of people who have made some mistakes at 25 we might not want televised.

And here is the thing about people in Ohio to remember. LeBron does still spend his off-seasons there. He has an opt out of his contract with the Miami heat at the end of next season and there are rumors that he might want to go back to Cleveland. I did ask him about that, he's not ready to address those yet. But he did say that whatever he does at the end of next season, he's learned to handle it a little bit better this time.

COSTELLO: Ok. We'll take the Ravens, too. Rachel, thanks very much. The next hour of CNN NEWSROOM after a break.