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Turkey Investigators Have Suspect's Fingerprints; Trump Responds to Kim Jong-Un's Threat; Trump Voices doubts on Russian Cyber Attacks; Israeli Prime Minister under Investigation; Series of ISIS Attacks since Mosul Offensive. Aired 12-1a ET

Aired January 3, 2017 - 00:00   ET



[00:00:10] MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR: This is CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles.

Ahead this hour: Turkish police want you to be on the lookout for that man. They say he is the prime suspect in the Istanbul nightclub attack.

Donald Trump sends a warning to Kim Jong-Un one day after North Korea's leader claimed he is testing a rocket that could reach the United States.

And rival drug gangs riot inside a prison in Brazil leaving dozens of people dead.

Hello everyone. Thanks for joining us. I'm Michael Holmes. NEWSROOM L.A. starts right now.

Thanks for your company, everyone.

Turkey says it has the fingerprints of the shooter who killed 39 people at a popular nightclub in Istanbul. We are told that this is the man that police are hunting.

This video matches the suspect's photo that police gave to Turkish media. It's unclear when the video itself was taken. At least eight people have been detained for questioning so far; ISIS claiming responsibility for the attack. Turkey believes it was retaliation for going after the terror group in Syria.

CNN's Ian Lee joins us now from Istanbul. Ian -- 48 hours after this attack, what is the latest on the manhunt and what is known about the attacker?

IAN LEE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Michael, what we're hearing from authorities is that, you know, they have the fingerprints. They have the picture. They believe those two elements are going to help them find out who this person is and also who was supporting him, the network that possibly could have helped him carry out this attack, where he got the gun -- all different little clues that they hope they can piece together. The deputy prime minister says they have hundreds of officers on this case. It is their number one priority to try to find him. But if he is an ISIS operative, as they claim, he could also try to go to Syria, back to the territory where the terror group holds.

So it could be a bit of a ticking clock for authorities to find him if he is trying to get back.

HOLMES: Now Ian, ISIS typically has refrained in the past, often anyway, from claiming responsibility for attacks in Turkey. Their view is that that helps create an environment of confusion and suspicion. Is this claim of responsibility being taken seriously?

LEE: I think right now, it is. We still, though, haven't had any evidence from ISIS that supports their claim. Yes, they made the statements but they haven't identified the person. They haven't given any other evidence that suggests that they were actually behind it although no other group has come out and claimed it.

The other militant group here that often carries out attacks, the Kurdish PKK, has denied that it carried out this attack and they even condemned it.

But for ISIS -- Turkey right now is in northern Syria. They are fighting ISIS as part of a Euphrates shield -- that operation. They're currently fighting over the city al-Bab. Turkey has pummeled them with artillery and airstrikes. And so in that statement, ISIS says this is retaliation for those strikes. So we could see a shift there in ISIS where they are starting to claim these mass casualty attacks.

HOLMES: Ian Lee in Istanbul -- our thanks.

Let's bring in CNN law enforcement contributor Steve Moore, also a retired supervisory special agent for the FBI. Good to see you -- Steve.

What is your take about how this was executed? How do you -- what do you learn from it? I mean he clearly knew how to handle a weapon, for a start.

STEVE MOORE, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT CONTRIBUTOR: Yes, he did know how to handle a weapon. And people say he was aiming tactically. He entered the location the same way that the Brussels killers did, by grabbing a taxi.

But one thing he did that is really concerning to me is he attempted to escape. Nobody else has done that before and that leads me to believe that he had help outside. And if he had help outside that indicates that he was part of a cell or some type of cross-border movement of ISIS.

HOLMES: It would appear that the Turks by releasing the photographs, by releasing the video, by the fact they got his fingerprints they know who they're dealing with. But do you think that this is the sort of attack that would require a cell? MOORE: I think that it may not require one but I think all the

indicators that I've seen just at this early point indicates that it was a cell; that there was casing of this location beforehand; that this person didn't just pick up a gun and fire it for the first time.

[00:05:08] It indicates that there was training, possibly in a camp south of the Turkish border in Syria. I think there's a lot to push in that direction.

HOLMES: So, when it comes to how the Turks would be trying to hunt this man down one of the problems, of course, as Ian Lee was saying, the border with Syria is porous. If this is a man who wanted to escape, he could well be in Syria. Now what sort of -- tactically what would the Turks be doing?

MOORE: Well, the Turks would try to be -- would be trying to close that porous border although they're not going to have much luck. I mean if you look at al-Rakal (ph), where the Syrians -- where ISIS is they're stronghold, that's 64 miles from the nearest Turkish border crossing.

And the Turks know who this guy is I believe right down to a name. He probably left his weapon in the club and went out as -- faking as a victim and did it specifically to get back to ISIS-held territory.

HOLMES: You know, we saw the attack recently against the Russian ambassador and now this one. Do you think -- a lot of people think that, you know, ISIS is -- you know, lashing out at soft targets like this because they're doing badly on their home turf. Is that something you would subscribe to?

MOORE: Yes. I mean terrorism is described as asymmetrical warfare. If you have an army that can compete, or you are militarily not being defeated, there's no need for terrorism because you are symmetrical -- it is symmetrical warfare. The more they lose, the more they are inclined to go to terrorism as their one way of succeeding. And that's -- I think what you're seeing here.

HOLMES: And it really does speak to the difficulty with these, you know, quote-unquote, "soft targets". I mean Turkey and Istanbul in particular was a place under heightened security anyway. This was a venue that had a couple of guards out the front, a police officer was nearby and was one of the victims as well. I mean it's so hard to protect against something like this.

MOORE: It is. And what I'm seeing here, there's a little nuance in the targets that have been chosen between the shooting of the Russian ambassador and this shooting. They are not attacking Syrian government installations -- or I'm sorry -- Turkish government officials or facilities.

What they're doing is attacking foreign nationals, the Russian ambassador and now a club The Reina, known as a hangout for foreigners. This was pressuring the Turkish government to concede to their demands by external pressure, having other countries push on Syria. HOLMES: All right. I'll leave it there. CNN law enforcement

contributor Steve Moore -- thanks so much.

U.S. President-Elect Donald Trump has a pointed response to Kim Jong- Un following the North Korean leader's rather threatening New Year announcement. Trump tweeted this quote, "North Korea just stated that it is in the final stages of developing a nuclear weapon capable of reaching parts of the U.S. It won't happen."

CNN's Saima Mohsin joins us now from Seoul in South Korea. How ready are the North Koreans and what is known about their capabilities and what sort of threat they might be able to pose?


It's very important to separate rhetoric from reality as far as Kim Jong-Un's announcements and proclamations are concerned and how sure can President-Elect Trump be that it won't happen.

We don't really know what he meant by that either, do we? Does he mean that North Korea doesn't have these kinds of weapons capabilities? Is he privy to some kind of intelligence that we are not aware of or does he believe that the U.S. can protect itself?

We do know that North Korea has long been testing various missiles, mostly short and medium length missiles and intermediate as well. Experts believe that their tests of longer range missiles have largely been unsuccessful -- Michael. But they do point crucially to the launch of a satellite in February 2016 which many say could have been a guise, a cover, for the test of a long-range missile.

Now does North Korea, though, have an intercontinental ballistic missile which basically means a missile that can go beyond 5,500 kilometers way farther than that and in fact, as Kim Jong-Un said in April last year could reach their enemies including the United States?

[00:10:03] Well, Kim Jong-Un says he is well on his way to testing one. Now, just a few days before this speech a high level diplomatic defector speaking here in Seoul for the first time since he made his escape said Kim Jong-Un is on track to completing his nuclear ambitions by the end of 2017 and he wants to time that with President Donald Trump moving into the White House. He didn't, however, mention whether that included an intercontinental ballistic missile -- Michael.

HOLMES: Yes. I mean the technology required is enormous. You don't just fire it. You have got to make it reenter and you've got to make it be accurate. And if it's going to be nuclear you've got a miniaturized weapon. There's a whole lot of things in play.

Let's say that he does have it or he's is going to have it inside of a year. What sort of defenses are in play in the region were he to pull the trigger?

MOHSIN: Yes, as you say, there are many, many stages before an intercontinental ballistic missile can be launched and even reenter but for a long time there have been discussions between South Korea and the United States for the THAD-missile -- anti-missile system rather -- to be placed here in South Korea. And it hasn't come here yet. But there have been those discussions. But crucially, the THAD can only really deal with short, medium and intermediate range missiles.

I'm not sure if it could really deal with an intercontinental ballistic missile. But they are making plans to deal with North Korea aggression by placing that here. However, that is incredibly controversial in the region because a lot of neighbors, crucially China, feel that that is further encroachment for militarization by the United States in the region. So we're even a long way off that kind of missile defense system -- Michael.

HOLMES: All right. Saima -- thanks so much. Saima Mohsin there in Seoul.

Well, intelligence officials say they have new evidence that traces the U.S. election hacking back to Russia but Donald Trump raising more questions about Russia's involvement. He claims to know things about hacking that others do not.

CNN's Jessica Schneider reports.


JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Donald Trump is ringing in the New Year, continuing to cast doubt on U.S. intelligence pointing to Russia as the culprit of campaign hacks during the election.

DONALD TRUMP (R), U.S. PRESIDENT-ELECT: I know a lot about hacking and hacking is a very hard thing to prove. So it could be somebody else. And I also know things that other people don't know and so they cannot be sure of this situation.

SCHNEIDER: Trump refusing to elaborate on what insider information he has, only promising to reveal more after his meeting later this week with intelligence officials.

Incoming press secretary Sean Spicer though tempering expectations about what the President-Elect might make public.

SEAN SPICER, INCOMING WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: He is going to talk about his conclusions and where he thinks things stand. So he's not going to reveal anything that was privileged or shared with him classified.

But one thing I think is missing from this discussions, Allison, is this report that everyone keeps talking about is not final. The current president of the United States hasn't seen a final report. The intelligence community is talking about wrapping it up later this week.

SCHNEIDER: Spicer also questioning whether the sanctions the Trump team previously called symbolic were overblown. The Obama administration expelled 35 diplomats and shuttered two Russian compounds on Long Island and in Maryland to retaliate against alleged Russian interference in the election.

SPICER: The question is, is the response of this administration, the sanctions they put on, proportional with the activities that have happened?

And number two, is it a political response to Russia or is it a diplomatic response?

SCHNEIDER: Candidate Trump certainly acknowledged and even seemed to egg on Russian hackers during the elections, inviting them to break in to Hillary Clinton's computers.

TRUMP: Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 e-mails that are missing. I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press. Let's see if that happens. That will be next.

SCHNEIDER: Hacked e-mails from the Democratic National Committee and Clinton campaign chair John Podesta trickled out throughout the campaign, exposing criticism against Clinton by her own staff and revealing some of the topics of her paid speeches to Wall Street bankers. Many Democrats blamed Russian hacking in part for Clinton's loss.

Donald Trump once again evoking the election closing out 2016 with this contentious tweet: "Happy New Year to all including to my many enemies and those who have fought me and lost so badly they just don't even know what do. Love."

But today Trump hardly turned over a new leaf starting the New Year with new boasts about the November elections tweeting, "Various media outlets and pundits say that I thought I was going to lose the election. Wrong. It all came together in the last week and I thought and felt I would win big, easily over the fabled 270 -- actually 306. When they cancelled fireworks they knew and so did I."

[00:15:02] Trump insisting over Twitter he always knew he was going to win but it was a different story when he addressed the crowd at a "thank you" rally in Wisconsin on December 13th. There, he recounted the story of how he actually rented out a small ballroom on election night because he was not so sure he was going to win and he also recounted how he told Melania that they worked have hard but Donald Trump said he told his wife "if we lose, we lose".

Jessica Schneider, CNN -- New York.


HOLMES: And joining me now Curtis Lee, national reporter for the "Los Angeles Times". Let's start with North Korea because it's the freshest of the tweets.


HOLMES: You know, it's a foreign policy in 140 characters by saying "it won't happen". Is the President-Elect backing himself in a corner? Is he painting a red line?

C. LEE: Well, this is something we saw Donald Trump do throughout the campaign, throughout the primary. He made a number of promises, you know, that he would win races; that he would, you know, make America great again.

And now we are seeing this, it's taken into another level now that Donald Trump is the President-Elect and we are just a couple weeks from him being inaugurated. It is in a way, he is kind of, you know, he is tweeting this out and the American people now look to their president and expect results from him.

So they see him say hey, it's not going to happen on his watch, you see him say this. So, you know, the American electorate is going to expect this. So he is really kind of cornering himself in some ways by using Twitter and promises because we saw in the primary and in the general election. He made a number of promises that didn't work out the way that he tweeted.

HOLMES: We keep saying with Donald Trump, you know, this is not an ordinary President-Elect. This is also the time of social media. But what are the risks of basically conducting foreign policy or making foreign policy pronouncements via Twitter?

C. LEE: Well, he is going against -- I mean he is receiving intelligence briefings. So there could be a chance where he may deal some classified information with the Russian hacking. I mean he said this week he's going to reveal some additional information. We don't know, obviously we would not expect them to be classified.

But you know, he is saying, hey, I know more than the American electorate does and I'm going to reveal it possibly and he could have a slip up.

HOLMES: What about now the hacking? I mean he keeps saying, you know, the latest thing is, you know, I have got information that nobody else has. What could it be?

C. LEE: He clearly definitely does have information other people don't have. He is receiving intelligence briefings often as well as Vice President-Elect Mike Pence. And you know, he does have information so it's highly -- you know, him throwing things out there kind of cryptically saying, hey, I have more information. I know more than the public knows. Well, obviously a number of people expect the President-Elect to know more but it's kind of this teasing that he's doing with the American electorate.

HOLMES: That was the thing last week though when he said I'm going to get a briefing next week to find out what is going on with this. And a lot of people's initial reaction was -- you don't know already? Why not have the briefing last week?

C. LEE: Yes. And you see a lot, you know, Donald Trump sometimes talking off the cuff. But now as he's President-Elect he doesn't have other candidates to go after him or anything. So it's really just really him and his words and him saying certain things as the President-Elect. He is really going to be challenged on this.

HOLMES: And you've got this skepticism in the face of 17, you know, intelligence agencies who do believe it and in fact most Republicans, senior Republicans believe it. What are the dangers once he is president and he is dealing -- he's in charge of these intelligence agencies? Has he sort of created doubt about their abilities? He's going to work with them.

C. LEE: He is kind of casting doubt on, you know, intelligence that is key to this country. And he's casting doubt on them. And you see senior Republicans John McCain, Lindsey Graham -- those folks essentially out there saying hey, we want to continue investigating this Russian hacking that's gone on. The Obama administration has called on the incoming administration to continue on but Trump has, you know, really pushed back on this notion that hacking had anything to do with the election.

HOLMES: A lot of people thought that he would temper himself from the campaign to the office of President-Elect to the office of president. He's not tempering, is he?

C. LEE: Not right now, no. But I mean, we still have a couple of weeks until inauguration. And once he does go into the White House we'll see if he continues on. President-Elect Trump has said that he will continue to tweet. That's something he's not going to give up.

I mean he has millions of followers. He can get his message out to them, he said. So we'll really see after January 20th, kind of how he acts actually in the Oval Office by himself and he is the leader of the free world.

HOLMES: With us Curtis Lee, national reporter for the "Los Angeles Times" -- great to have you here.

C. LEE: Thank you so much -- Michael.

HOLMES: Thanks.

Although ISIS is losing ground in Iraq and Syria there is no let up in their terror attacks. We'll have the latest targets, coming up.

Also Israeli police question Benjamin Netanyahu for several hours on Monday. What the prime minister is suspected of.

That's also coming up.


HOLMES: The Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is under investigation for possible corruption. Police questioned him for several hours on Monday. It's not the first time either that Mr. Netanyahu has been investigated.

CNN's Oren Liebermann reports.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is officially a suspect in a criminal investigation in Israel. Police and the Attorney General saying he is suspected of having received gifts and benefits from businessmen. But they won't say too much more about the suspicions fearing the investigation may become biased one way or another if they revealed too many details.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeatedly denounced the allegations and the investigation against him. This is what he posted or part of what he posted on his Facebook page on New Year's Day. He said, "Unfortunately you'll have to be disappointed this time as well like you were disappointed on previous affairs. As usual there will not be anything because there is nothing. Try replacing the Prime Minister at the ballot box as is customary in a democracy."

There Netanyahu is referencing a previous criminal investigation into his affairs. That happened back in the late 90s during his first term as prime minister. It didn't lead to an indictment and didn't lead to any charges. Netanyahu predicting this current investigation won't lead to any charges as well.

[00:25:00] Now this started about six months ago as an examination as the Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit looked into affairs relating to the Prime Minister. But the Attorney General said it wasn't until a month ago that he had the evidence to believe this would lead to a criminal investigation.

So what happens now? Well, Netanyahu doesn't have to do anything as long as this remains a criminal investigation without an indictment. Under Israeli law only when it becomes a conviction and that conviction is upheld at the highest levels in the Israeli high court then he would have to resign.

That being said, if this becomes an indictment with serious charges, he may face tremendous political pressure and public pressure to step down.

But we're not there yet. At the moment this is the beginning of a criminal investigation. Police investigators were at his house for about three hours on Monday night. This is just the first stage. It remains a criminal investigation. And that is where Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu predicts it will end.

Oren Liebermann, CNN -- Jerusalem.


HOLMES: Well, while Iraqi forces fight to retake Mosul, ISIS militants striking back in other areas. A car bomb kills at least 35 people in Baghdad's southern city district; four other attacks in the capital as well, they killed nine more people; and ISIS targeting two police stations in Samarra, killing at least six people.

Meanwhile the French President Francois Hollande says fighting terrorism in Iraq helps prevent terror attacks on French soil. He visited Iraq on Monday meeting with the country's president and prime minister. About 500 French troops are training and advising Iraqi forces.

Former Marine and Green Beret Chase Milsap is here with me in Los Angeles. He's also a board member of No One Left Behind -- a very important group that helps Afghan and Iraqi interpreters and others whose lives are still at risk to get out of country. That's a whole other segment we can do.

Let's start with this sort of asymmetrical warfare. This is a conscious tactic on a couple of fronts one imagines to distract Iraqi forces from the frontline, for starters.


And this is what we've seen before in Iraq, you know. When I was there in 2006-2007, that's exactly what al Qaeda then and now ISIS now is looking at saying take that focus off of the front lines, put terror in the rear, go after those population centers right in Baghdad and start really ticking away at the coalition.

We're talking about a Shia area today which was hit.

HOLMES: That's the other aspect, the sectarian aspect.

MILSAP: Absolutely. What they are really looking is that the coalition in Mosul made of the Kurds, the Shia militias, the Iraqi security forces and even the Sunni militias there is a very, very fragile coalition and it's built on trust.

HOLMES: Does it suggest that when they lose ground, literally lose ground, that this is a lashing out and trying to sort of fracture the front, to spread the battlefield?


MILSAP: In some ways, yes. I mean that's what we do when we're talking about asymmetric warfare. Terrain is a part of it. You absolutely have to control areas like Mosul.

But at the same time you've got to know that your enemy is smart. They're going to go under ground. They're desperate. And they're going to strike in areas where you're going to be weak and take that focus away.

And what is most important on the ground right now are those American advisers that are looking at this and saying is this coalition strong enough to weather the storm. Can we keep the focus on where the fight is right now in Mosul and make this desperate enemy even more desperate?

HOLMES: Well, phase two of the Mosul campaign is officially under way.

MILSAP: Right.

HOLMES: It began a week or two ago. What did you make tactically looking at phase one? I mean there was a lot of evidence that ISIS had moved a lot of their fighters from the east of the city across the river and to the west where tactically they're in better shape because of the layout of the city.

It's a lot more -- it's a lot more (inaudible). It favors the incumbent in an urban warfare situation. But then the Iraqis have gone in and they've had a hard time of it. They are only a handful of neighborhoods in from the East. They're not even close to the river. Would you have expected it to go a bit quicker?

MILSAP: Well, you know, this is an enemy that has been in the city for over a year. They've had time to prepare a defense. And anytime we look at this, in urban warfare we're talking street to street, very, very difficult fighting.

And so to see this, no, I'm not surprised that it has taken this long because we are talk about moving a coalition that hasn't worked together on this scale before through urban areas. And this is where the advisers, those who are on the ground, are really looking at this and saying is there communication there. Do we have the air support we need? Do we have the medical support we need? Are we ready to move in? And it's ok to take a tactical pause, hold that ground, reassess and then figure out how they're going to strike again.

HOLMES: A lot of people are already worried about once ISIS is out of Mosul, and they will be at some time. It could take a year. But they will be out of Mosul, the "what then" in terms of the sectarian makeup. And you touched on it there. You have the Kurds, not all Kurds are on the same page. You've got the Hashd Al-Shaabi (ph), the Shiite paramilitary, Shiite-led paramilitary who are there. You've got the Sunni militias and then you've got Sunni tribes who also are involved and there's already talk of retribution among Sunnis.

Do you see what happens afterwards, that all of these groups that are fighting a common enemy now could end up --

MILSAP: Yes, can they keep that coalition together.

HOLMES: -- fighting each other.

MILSAP: Yes, absolutely.

[00:30:01] And you know, in the American military we always talk about this idea of end state. So it's what were you trying to achieve at the end, when mission success is there. And I know that they are starting to think about governance, economic stability. How do you bring a city that's been under ISIS control and heavy fighting --

[00:30:08] CHASE MILLSAP, FORMER MARINE AND GREEN BERET: And I know that they are starting to think about governance and economic stability. How do you bring a city that's been under ISIS control and heavy fighting back to a working, liveable city?

And that's something that we've got to start looking at now and those advisers are absolutely working on that trust so that when the fighting does stop, we have something we can get the lights back on, the water running and people can live there and feel protected again. MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR: And governance is vital.

MILLSAP: Absolutely.

HOLMES: And who does it?

MILLSAP: Exactly. And who is part of that coalition? Are we going to be able -- they've got elections coming up here in April. So these things that -- is this coalition strong enough? There's the trust there that once that phase of the conflict ends, we can move into our true governance and actually working together?

HOLMES: Yes. We're going to leave it there. Chase Millsap, thanks so much. Appreciate you coming in and chatting about this. I was there last month and there are a lot of challenges ahead.

MILLSAP: It's going to be a challenge.

HOLMES: Yes. No One Left Behind, Google it. Look it up. That's a whole other segment we'll do. A very important group with you and Matt Zeller.

MILLSAP: Yes, that's right.

HOLMES: I'm working it. So Google that, everyone.

All right, next up on CNN NEWSROOM, family members rushed the gates of a Brazilian prison after a deadly uprising. What sparked the riot, coming up?


HOLMES: You're watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles, I'm Michael Holmes. The headlines now.

Turkey says it has the fingerprints of the shooter who killed 39 people at a packed nightclub in Istanbul. Police put this photograph out of the suspect. At least eight people have been detained for questioning and ISIS is claiming responsibility. Turkey believes the shooting was in retaliation for attacking the terror group in Syria.

[00:35:07] Israeli police are investigating whether Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu illegally received gifts and benefits from businessmen. They questioned him for three hours on Monday, all part of a corruption probe. Mr. Netanyahu has repeatedly denied the allegations.

Donald Trump lashing out at North Korea after the country's leader made a threatening announcement on New Year's Day. Kim Jong-un said he is on the verge of testing a ballistic missile that could hit the United States. Trump's response? It won't happen.

Brazilian authorities are now investigating a lengthy prison riot that left at least 60 people dead. They say the death toll could rise as they get a better idea of what exactly happened.

CNN's Rafael Romo with the details.


RAFAEL ROMO, CNN SENIOR LATIN AFFAIRS EDITOR (on-camera): Brazilian officials say the riot lasted 17 hours from New Year's Day in the afternoon until Monday morning when prison guards were finally able to regain control.

(Voice-over): Family members of inmates desperate to find out about their loved one rushed the prison gates.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): I want to know how my son is. My son is in there.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): This is a bullet.

ROMO: Anguish is plain to see on their faces. Violence broke out Sunday in the prison complex in the heart of the Amazon near the city of Manaus. Officials told state run media that the bloody riot was sparked by a battle between rival drug gangs. Prison guards along with 74 prisoners were taken hostage during the 17-hour riot. The bodies of some of those killed were thrown over the prison walls, some of them decapitated.

SERGIO FONTES, HEAD OF SECURITY, AMAZONIAN STATE (through translator): There were deaths, unfortunately. We have some outside the prison who were thrown from the prison by the inmates themselves. There have been escapes. We don't yet know how many. We're already looking for the escapees in the forest and highways.

ROMO: Brazil has more than 600,000 people behind bars, the fourth largest prison population on earth. Prisons there have long been criticized for being overcrowded, violent and disease ridden.

(on-camera): In addition to overcrowding, the Brazilian security officials acknowledge that the two gangs were probably fighting each other because they each wanted to control drug trafficking inside the prison.

Rafael Romo, CNN.


HOLMES: Police in Germany allegedly targeted immigrants for security searches during New Year's Eve celebrations in Cologne. Authorities say they did not want a repeat of last year's event where sexual assaults and robberies numbered in the hundreds.

Chris Burns with the details.


CHRIS BURNS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on-camera): A debate over whether Cologne police were right in racially profiling on New Year's Eve. We were there. CNN was on the ground watching hundreds of youth of mainly immigrant origin coming out of trains into the square where authorities say that a year ago hundreds of women were sexually assaulted and others were robbed from what they believe were immigrant youth, causing a lot of backlash against the immigrants coming to Europe.

And this was an issue that the police were sensitive to and the police chief saying this is what they did to that crowd.


JUERGEN MATHIES, COLOGNE POLICE CHIEF: Overall, we checked the identities of 650 people of whom, based on police officer's assessments, around 98 to 99 percent almost all of them were from North Africa.


BURNS: Now as the police were acting on this, they sent out a tweet saying that they were rounding up hundreds of what they called Nafris and checking their documents.

A Nafri is seen by many as a derogatory term of North Africans. That cause a lot of backlash in political circles and on the Internet. The politicians likened the social democrats in saying that this was dehumanizing, the Greens saying that this was unacceptable. The CDU, conservative CDU saying that what these men were doing, the police were doing their job and don't forget about what happened a year ago.

This could continue as a debate in the run up to the regional elections in the spring and also national elections in the fall. How much security is too much? How much security is too little?

Chris Burns, CNN, Berlin.


HOLMES: Well, beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but authenticity, well, that's a whole different story. Spotting counterfeit art, that's next on NEWSROOM L.A.


[00:41:53] HOLMES: Well, the price of art has skyrocketed in recent years, attracting more criminals to produce counterfeits. And fakes have gotten so good that experts can't always spot them.

Nina Dos Santos with more on the rise of fine art forgery and what's being done to stop it.


NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN CORRESPPONDENT (voice-over): Old Masters and iconic art from Italy. Pictures like these have always been coveted by collectors. But in today's $63 billion art market, they've also become a lucrative target for forgers.


DOS SANTOS: To highlight the increasing incidence of fakery, curators at this London gallery once replaced one of their works with a $100 copy made in China.

DEJARDIN: The idea was we commissioned a copy by simple means. You can order them over the Internet.

We took the replica, put it in this frame. This beautiful painting by Frans Hals went into store temporarily, and we hung it on the walls and put the usual label on it.

DOS SANTOS: And they challenged visitors to spot it. Ticket sales doubled. And only 11 percent of viewers got it right.

DEJARDIN: The art world has always, always been plagued with forgers. It's not new. It's always there, and that's because of the art market. The value of paintings is so astronomical these days. I mean, it's kind of shot. And so obviously where there's big money involved, criminals, which is what it is, criminals will follow.

DOS SANTOS: But the value of fine art doubling over the past decade, the threat of forgery has also risen, netting some of the biggest names in the business, like Sotheby's, which had to reimburse a client $10 million after it sold a Frans Hals which wasn't what it first seemed.

So, while buyers used to rely on the eye of the expert, the eye of the x-ray now offers the ultimate guarantee. And that means big business for this authentication lab in south London.

FRANCIS EASTAUGH, GENERAL MANAGER, ART ANALYSIS & RESEARCH: What we do here using science and forensics to uncover these fakes and forgeries is not common in the art market, but it's becoming more so. And that just means inevitably a little more is coming out. You're finding these cases of forgeries.

We're really looking at the material that makes up these paintings. So, the paint, the stretcher, the canvas, all the different constituent parts.

DOS SANTOS: Fake or fortune, when it comes to buying, the age-old rules still apply.

DEJARDIN: Think twice. If you can't trace it back, think twice. Caveat emptor, buyer, beware.

DOS SANTOS: Nina dos Santos, CNN Money, London.


HOLMES: You're watching NEWSROOM L.A. I'm Michael Holmes. Thanks for being with us. "World Sport" after the break.