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tv   Anderson Cooper 360  CNN  August 1, 2013 1:00am-2:01am PDT

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tonight, keeping them honest. clinic operators billing taxpayers, billing you for a bundle, in some cases for people that don't exist. does the nsa have your number and web history and e-mails just a keystroke away? new reporting says yes and reveals the classified software they use to access that and more. we're joined by a lawmaker who wants to remain in the agency. and is there a bellyache in this bag. investigators say they've traced an ugly stomach bug is linked to contaminated bugs of salad. why aren't they saying which brand to avoid? we'll investigate that. in rehab racket, we've been telling you this week what a year-long investigation for the center of investigative reporting reveals about a
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program that's costing us money, big money. the investigation documents how california's federally funded medicaid system, medi-cal paid out $94 million, again, your money, in the past two years to drug clinics that show signs of deception or questionable billing practices. among scams, billing for phony patients, drug treatments never provided or treatments the patient didn't need. in one case the patient was dead. it's truly staggering stuff. for weeks our investigative correspondent drew griffin tried to get answers from officials but no one would talk on camera. instead, they couldn't get away from the camera fast enough. two weeks before this investigation began airing, state officials announced action and agreed to sit down and talk. you might ask after seeing tonight's final installment, what took them so long and whether their promises to get tough actually add up. drew griffin tonight, keeping them honest.
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>> reporter: georgia luno shouldn't be in california's drug rehab business. you seem to be at the center of fraud allegations here. >> no, no, no. >> reporter: he's banned from billing medicaid since 2002 but it hasn't stopped him from billing the state of california. tim ajindu is accused of fraudulent practices at his drug rehab clinic, but it hasn't stopped him from billing the state of california either. mr. jindu -- >> yes. who are you? >> reporter: i just told you i'm drew griffin. your former employees say you are billing for the county services you're not providing, sir. and then there's this man, alexander firdman. convicted for running an organized crime ring in texas ripping off insurance companies. it hasn't stopped him from coming to california, setting up a drug rehab clinic and billing taxpayers even though felons are barred from running drug medi-cal centers. how can a guy with a record like
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you run a drug rehab clinic in california. you've been convicted of a major car crash scheme in texas. >> i was convicted, but it's not what it seems. >> reporter: in the last two fiscal years, taxpayers spent $186 million supposedly treating drug and alcohol abuse patients in california. our investigation with the center for investigative reporting found half of that money, or about $94 million, has gone to clinics that have shown questionable billing practices or signs of fraud. joy jarfers former supervisor says she complained to the state for years about all the obvious fraud. we found billing records for people in jail. one person dead. people who said they didn't need this kind of treatment. >> uh-huh. >> reporter: clinics closed on a certain day, billing for that certain day. none of this surprises you?
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>> not at all. we found all of those things. >> reporter: for more than a month, cnn has been asking for an explanation from the state of california. and for more than a month, we've gotten nowhere. >> i believe the interview was declined. >> reporter: can i ask from you why? >> that wasn't my decision. >> reporter: state health officials in one sacramento building after another refused to be questioned, including toby douglas who oversees drug medi-cal. will you make sure to provide a response as why this widespread fraud is allowed to continue? finally, weeks after calling the state's secretary of health and human service dianna duly and getting no for an answer, we decided to ask for a response in person. secretary duly, drew griffin with cnn. >> how do you do? >> reporter: we've been trying to reach you and talk about the
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widespread fraud in the medi-cal business but we're told nobody will talk to us about it. in an uncomfortable moment, the secretary at first refused to speak. secretary? do you know alex ferdman a convicted felon who apparently runs one of these clinics and bills the state of california for several years despite the fact there are complaints registered with the department about him? he's convicted of a major insurance fraud in the state of texas, but for somehow was able to get certified and has been billing. i'm just wondering if there is anybody in the state of california concerned about this fraud. then finally answered a question. >> the state of california takes fraud very seriously and there are many investigations underway. all allegations are given full and fair consideration and you've caught me running because
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i'm late for a meeting that i am chairing. >> reporter: i wonder if you would do one thing and ask toby douglas to sit down with us and explain with us -- >> if you want to give us a little bit of time -- >> reporter: we've been giving you a couple months. >> we have a budget we're completing and many priorities. information has been provided, answers have been provided. we have a very -- >> reporter: i understand. >> we have a very extensive fraud and investigation unit in medi-cal that's one of the best in the country. >> reporter: two questions -- >> that's all i have to say. >> reporter: are you concerned there is massive fraud because that's what we're finding out? and number two, as secretary of health, could you have toby douglas sit down and talk to us about our specific questions? >> excuse me. >> reporter: that is hardly the end of the story. >> would you get security. >> reporter: our confrontational exchange with california's secretary of health and human
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services may, in fact, have been the trigger for a major statewide crack down. one month later, nearly to the day the state sent out this news release, 16 drug medi-cal centers are under investigation and temporarily suspended. this week california announced that figure jumped to 29 rehab centers. and last week, california relented to cnn's interview request. chief deputy director of health care services karen johnson tried to explain why it has taken so long. >> we are going to review all of the drug medi-cal providers in the state of california. we'll also require that they re-enroll in our program so that they become recertified. >> reporter: based on that answer, i think it's fair to say that the oversight by the state of california up until now has been seriously lacking. agree?
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>> i wouldn't say that's not a fair characterization. any complaints that were referred to the department of justice and department of health care services was investigated. there are other complaints, those complaints were investigated. that is going to be part of the ongoing active investigation, and as i mentioned, we are looking at all of the cases and what is emerging is a much larger, bigger picture we need to address. >> reporter: a bigger picture of fraud? >> a bigger picture of problems. >> reporter: and only now two weeks before these two national news organizations are about to release a major study of what we found was extensive fraud, is the state of california doing this extensive review. coincidence? >> it's not a fair characterization. we've been investigating all along. >> reporter: my question is, why has it taken the state so long to catch up to this?
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>> look, there are bad people who want to scam this program. and we are going to do everything possible to investigate and deploy the necessary resources to improve and enhance our enforcement effort. >> reporter: so you feel the state of california has done enough? >> obviously, what has happened and what we see clearly, there is more that needs to be done. >> and drew griffin joins us now. i got to say this is awesome reporting. i mean, that -- the fact that they -- the state officials won't give you any interviews for weeks and weeks and weeks. >> right. >> and then are running into the ladies room to run away from you without even answering any questions is just stunning to me and it seems like they are trying to have it both ways. on the one hand we've been investigating this stuff all along and then all of a sudden,
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they just happen to announce this huge review in the wake of your reporting. >> yeah, i think it's pretty obvious. just before air we found out that now 36 of these clinics have been referred to for the california department of justice for possible prosecution. the clinics are being shut down. alexander ferdman, the man that we showed in the piece, his clinic shut down last week. georgia luna's clinic voluntarily shut down a month ago. they do want it both ways. we're on top of it but we're doing this big overhaul and review of the situation. >> and working on the budget so we can't bother to talk to you. >> the problem is, they did know and that's the crux of what you see. if you've been watching the last several nights, they knew the fraud was going on. they had records of it. their own investigators found it and little to nothing was done until now. >> and now, at least to you, california officials are saying the fraud is going to end or at least -- >> you know, we'll see, right? what they are saying is they will review all clinics, recertify all clinics and that should at least get away the
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felons running the clinics. >> the felons running the clinics -- >> who will oversee to see the clinics, oh, they're closed on wednesdays but billing on wednesdays. the clinics treating people that don't exist or are dead. we don't know the specifics of what their overhaul will look like. the state auditor, the state senator on your air last night. >> right. >> calling for an independent audit i think he's on to something. they have been the overseers and done a terrible job. >> the last three nights, every night i think it can't get worse or more incredible, but your reporting is great. quick reminder, if you have a tip for drew on this or another story, you can let him know at follow me @andersoncooper on twitter. coming up next, nsa leaker edward snowden's dad and a lawmaker battling to curb the national security agency on how easily they can access your
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online data. classified software that makes it as simple as point and click. and o.j. simpson learns if he's getting paroled. there's also a very big case. parole does not mean freedom. we'll be right back. you know who you are. you can part a crowd, without saying a word... if you have yet to master the quiet sneeze... you stash tissues like a squirrel stashes nuts... well muddlers, muddle no more. try zyrtec®. it gives you powerful allergy relief. and zyrtec® is different than claritin® because zyrtec® starts working at hour one on the first day you take it. claritin® doesn't start working until hour three. zyrtec®. love the air.
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welcome back. new claims tonight about how much low-level government employees can find out about you with a few computer keystrokes. whether it's top officials in
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washington or the director of the national security agency at a convention in las vegas, people don't trust you. >> the office of the director of intelligence released a batch of classified documents on the intelligence gathering operations, material not scheduled for declassification until 2038. they included 2011 justice department briefing paper describing two programs for logging phone and e-mail data. it says, quote, only a tiny fraction of such records are ever viewed by nsa intelligence analysts, but the new information from edward snowden shows accessing such information is available to a wide range of analysts and simple and easy to get detailed extensively. the program is called ex key score, an nsa analyst requires
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no previous analyst. they have to fill in a box stating there is some kind of foreign connection. in audition, the article details how ex key score searches e-mail subject lines and addresses but also the body of the message itself. they main sane access to ex key score and other search tools is limiteded. justin amash is a skeptic. he tried and nearly succeeded last week in passing legislation to rein in the nsa and is backing a bipartisan effort to try again. congressman, this program revealed in the guardian today, ex key score, how concerned should people be? >> very concerned. we'll have a classified breaching tomorrow with keith alexander and i intend to ask questions. one thing we don't know is where is the content coming from? there is an array of content coming in, whether e-mails or other internet information, and i'd like to know, and my colleagues would like to know, where is this data coming from?
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>> did you know about this beforehand? because what the people in the intelligence community say is there is congressional oversight but there is only congressional oversight about what the nsa tells you about. >> yeah, we have these briefings and is it possible in some document somewhere when they hand you 200 pages and say can only look at it in a room that there's some line about this program? it's possible. i don't know. the problem we have when we go to these briefings is we have to ask exactly the right question to get the right answer. if we don't ask the precise question, we don't get an answer. >> well, even when the director of national intelligence james clapper testified before -- you know, testified on capitol hill recently, he was asked point blank whether or not they collect data on american citizens, and clapper said no, not wittingly and sort of later on said well, the definition of collecting is different than the common definition.
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did he lie in your opinion? >> yes, he did lie. he lied to congress. he lied to the american people. i've called for him to step down, and i think he should face the same consequences any american would face who came to congress and gave false testimony or did so in a court proceeding and any ordinary american might face prison time for doing that. so we have to be treating government officials the same way we treat anyone else. >> we've had a number of intelligence officials over the last couple months or weeks saying well, you know, some of these programs, these collecting of meta data, collecting of phone calls or phone numbers, it's stopped dozens of terrorist attacks. now senator patrick leahy said maybe it stopped or was involved in one, but when you look at the details of how it was used, it's not stopped nearly the number some intelligence officials have been claiming. >> yeah, they have been -- there are many of them who have been very careful to say under this
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program and other programs we have stopped 54 terrorist attacks. there are some members of congress who have not been very careful and i think have bordered on giving false testimony to the american people, and we should take a close look at that, but yeah, they -- i think those who are careful and cautious about what they say realize that it's not this particular collection of phone records, mass collection of phone records that is doing the work here. >> i spoke to glenn greenwald on this program last night. he pointed out people within the government, high level officials leak classified information all the time if it suits their political interest or, you know, whatever interest they may have, and nothing seems to happen to them and yet, people with no status, no political connections like bradley manning or edward snowden or lower level officials leak classified information and get hit with the full blunt of the u.s. justice system, certainly under the obama administration.
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i'm not condoning the breaking of a law, but is the system unfair here? >> the system is unfair. we need a better way for those that want to blow the whistle on the government to do so. there is talk that edward snowden could go to, for example, a member of congress and tell them about the program, that it wasn't being applied in what he thought was a constitutional manner. that's not true. edward snowden couldn't come to me or most members of congress and talk about it. he had to go to superiors and might be able to talk to people on the intelligence committee. they don't have a lot of avenues and if you look at some of the intelligence committee members, it's pretty staffed in favor of people who support these programs with the exception of a few people like senator wyden and udall and others. >> appreciate your time. thank you. thanks so much. let's dig deeper with edward snowden's father and bruce fine. good to have you on the program. lon, what is your reaction to this newly published information that your son gave them, there
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is a program that allows the nsa to access anything a typical user does on the internet? >> i find it shocking. it's a matter of more truth coming forward. i've only been able to scan the new information, but i'm very interested in seeing the two intelligence committees now, specifically mike rogers and dianne feinstein, what they are going to have to say. is there going to be more misdirection? we talk about james clapper but i think the leadership of the two intelligent committees at this point is quite suspect. and congressman amash, i believe, alluded to it when he talked about how people answer questions. well, much of how you answer questions is framed by what questions are asked. so i would say that mike rogers, dutch rupsburger, peter king,
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dianne feinstein and those leaders that put them there need to take a hard look at that leadership. i believe it's deficient. in my prior career, when you have problems with oversight and there is a loss of confidence, you change the leadership. i believe it's time for that. >> i also would volunteer, it shows that sunshine is the best disinfectant. exactly why edward snowden's revolutions were so critical to the functioning of democracy. and one thing that was so apparent today, that everyone was eager to discuss ways to reform and to curtail the programs that edward snowden revealed, but it was like his name was taboo. no one would utter edward snowden's name because he showed they had been derelict in not disclosing and conducting the oversight that he did single handedly at 29 years old. >> lon, a lot of people don't realize, you talked about your prior career in the coast guard,
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as i understand it. do you believe when you hear intelligence officials say these programs, some of the programs that your son revealed, that they stopped dozens, more than 50 or involved with the prevention of more than 50 terrorist attacks. do you believe that? >> no, you have to focus on the language. anyone in government who is trying to preserve a program or gain support for a program, you are going to use the strongest possible language. and when we originally heard language from i believe general alexander giving testimonies, he was questioned by the house intelligence committee, the language they used was quote potential terrorist events end quote. that gets extrapolated to thwarted 50 terrorist attacks, but i would be very interested in seeing the actual number of prosecutions and more details on that. the bottom line is if you have to say 50 potential events, that's not very strong language.
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and -- but certainly again, i believe we need a strong intelligence community and they do good work and also a strong conventional defense. but it's a matter of priority, and i really believe if we pull this thread, we'll find a bigger issue here. the issue is money and power. there are many corporations who benefit from these programs, as well as employees, i should say appointed officials within the intelligence community who bounce back and forth between government and corporate service and it's a cash cow to be quite frank. we have other, i believe, issues that politicians are ignoring because there is concern about votes. again, i'll go back to the southern border. certain politicians do not want to talk about security there. i would love to hear from some particularly those retired, that have no fear of blowback, border officials that talk about how
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secure the border is. >> if i can interject, anderson, one deficiency in that number, it doesn't state whatever was failed couldn't have been foiled with measures consistent with the patriot act or section 214 in the fourth amendment. just to say we foiled something doesn't mean you have to go to that dragnet surveillance to discover what needed to be discovered. in fact, the testimony today there is a tiny, tiny fraction out of billions if not trillions of data gathered on americans that really is viewed as relevant. do you really need to gather the information? they asked maybe that's not what we need to do. we need to have a conversation. of course, none of them said the reason you're thinking about this is edward snowden. >> i want to ask you, lon, there are a couple things you said to "the washington post." i want to get more clarification on. you said the fbi asked you to travel to moscow to see your son awhile back. what -- you know, what did they expect you to do or hope you to do, and is that something you would still like to do at some point go there? >> i'm glad you asked that. i can't give you a date.
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it was sometime ago and they called and ask if i would be willing to get on a flight and go to moscow to see my son. and i was at home, and it was a complete surprise. i had no attorney at the time. i had done nothing wrong and i was adamant i would not have an attorney. and i thought about it and i wanted to say yes. and then i asked, are you sure my son is in moscow? they said no. i said wait, i'm not going to get on a flight and go to moscow to sit on a tarmac to be an emotional tool for you to use against him. i want to first speak to my son. i said can you establish communications? at first they said i'm not sure i can. i have buddies who can set up communications any place on the planet, you know, all of the military services, within a very short period of time. so that was the prerequisite. i said if you can set up communications and i can talk to my son and there is value, i
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would like to go. the positive thing that came out of that, i thought maybe i should have legal counsel if i am going to get on an airplane and go to moscow. that's what led me through a trusted adviser to bruce fine and other attorneys, and that was a critical milestone for me. and i'm thankful for that. we tried to work with the fbi to set up communications. one of our requirements was going to be that attorney/client privilege was respected. i wanted to establish that for my son if he came back to u.s. soil, and that's on advice of bruce, which is wise counsel i wouldn't have considered. i don't want to get into specifics, but it just went downhill. at this point, i have no desire to get on an aircraft with the fbi to fly to moscow because i have lost faith in the overarching organizations, the
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justice department, that again, they are operating in good faith. >> you would actually tell your son, my understanding from what you said last week on this program, you would actually tell your son it's probably a good idea to stay in russia? is that true? >> no question. again, it's an evolution for me of watching, again, so many -- again, these folks on the intel committees, what i've seen from them and other comments from, again, the attorney general, the secretary of state at this point, absolutely i feel that it's in my son's best interest for personal safety and finding justice and which i hope he will be able to return to the united states and answer for this and the truth be told. in this climate i don't believe that's possible, so yes, i think russia is the best place for him. i think that's where he -- russia i believe has the strength and conviction to protect my son at this point. >> i want -- >> anderson -- >> before you jump in, i want to ask you one question i want you
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both to respond to. since last we talked, bradley manning was accused of leaking serious material and acquitted of aiding the enemy. still, he's facing a maximum 136 years in prison. lon, does that give you pause in term whafts it could mean for your son? >> certainly, it has implications but bradley manning was really a member of the military, as i was, for most of my life, subject to the uniform code of military justice, tried in a military court. but certainly, i know how he was treated and ultimately it's the government at the highest levels that was responsible for that. so at this point, i'm really concerned about my son's safety. i'm not even thinking about what would happen in terms of the trial. that's why we have attorneys, bruce, and access to many others and we're just not at that point now. i'm concerned about my son's immediate safety, security and health. >> bruce, go ahead.
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>> yeah, i think you can distinguish edward snowden's case from bradley manning with regard to the substance of what he disclosed. it would be a violation of the first amendment in my view for the government to punish the disclosure of wrongful government action. we have a right to petition for grievances under the first amendment. i did want to volunteer last evening i did have an opportunity to speak to edward snowden's attorney in russia and we had a pleasant conversation. he did reassure me that edward is in good health and there may be a time where it would be constructive to try to meet and see whether there can't be common ground that everyone agrees would advance the interest of the united states. mr. snowden, lon, his father and russia in trying to resolve this in a way that honors due process and the highest principles of fairness and civilization. >> bruce vine, lon snowden thank you very much. just ahead, breaking news
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tonight about ariel castro's sentencing hearing. what we've heard about who may speak tomorrow in court. it may surprise you. also o.j. simpson wins parole but not his freedom. jeffrey toobin and mark geragos will explain more on that ahead.
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more than 900 counts in a plea deal that took the death penalty off the table. he's expected to speak tomorrow in court. we have information about tomorrow's hearing. what can we expect tomorrow? what will happen? >> reporter: anderson, certainly a dramatic proceeding tomorrow. we'll see some evidence taken from ariel castro's home and pictures and witness testimony. and we're hearing from sources that one of the three victims will actually be making an impact statement tomorrow. and we're hearing from sources that that will likely be michelle knight. that could change between now and then. she could change her mind but as of now, we're hearing michelle knight will make an impact statement through video or in the courtroom with ariel castro sitting there. that may surprise some people because according to sources and police reports, michelle knight experienced the worst abuse over the last ten years. but this could be therapeutic and empowering for her, anderson, according to psychologists and also, she's been showing gratitude. she wrote a thank you letter to cleveland police who have been
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helping her. they posted this on their facebook page today and in the letter michelle night says you don't know how much i appreciate your time and work collecting cards and gifts from people for me and the other girls. i'm overwhelmed by the amount of thoughts, love and prayers expressed by complete strangers. it's comforting. life is tough but i'm tougher. when the caterpillar thought the world was over, she became the butterfly. thanks. god bless you. michelle knight. so we expect to hear the same tone from her, the same showing of gratitude tomorrow if she does end up making that impact statement. >> is ariel castro actually speaking tomorrow? >> reporter: his attorney is saying yes and he's saying that he's expected to be apologetic. it really could be the first time we see ariel castro being remorseful. i spoke to someone close to ariel castro today and she says he will be explaining a lot tomorrow. we could see another side of
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ariel castro in that he's not the monster everyone thinks he is. we have to wait and see what that is. >> that would be quite a statement if he's able to convince anybody of that. pam brown, thanks very much. coming up, o.j. simpson learns whether he's granted parole. and there's a twist to that. and later, a bagged salad mix made hundreds of people sick. the question is, why aren't they saying which brand is the culprit? we'll hear from sanjay gupta coming up. new roc® multi correxion has an exclusive 5 in 1 formula it's clinically proven to hydrate dryness, illuminate dullness lift sagging diminish the look of dark spots and smooth the appearance of wrinkles together these 5 elements create ageless looking skin roc® multi correxion 5 in 1 it's high performance skincare™ only from roc® i was having trouble getting out of bed in the i was having trouble morning because my back hurt so bad. the sleep number bed conforms to you. i wake up in the morning with no back pain. i can adjust it if i need to...if my back's a little
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well, today o.j. simpson was granted parole in his armed robbery case, but he won't get out of prison any time soon. he's been there for five years and will have to stay four more years because he's only granted parole on some charges and serving consecutive sentences. >> they told me what was expected of me here and i gave them my word i would try to be or would be the best prisoner they have ever had here and i think for the most part, i've kept my word on that. >> joining me now is jeffrey
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toobin and criminal defense attorney mark geragos. jeff, at least for this case, o.j. simpson really shouldn't have been convicted on this. >> well, you know, if there is any justice, o.j. simpson should be in prison for life for killing ron goldman and nicole brown. >> his wife. >> but he got acquitted, for better or worse, and this case is ridiculous. i mean, he -- he's accused of trying to steal his own stuff. >> memorabilia. >> and someone else had a gun and he's accused of knowing about the guy having the gun. the guy with the gun is out of prison. o.j. didn't have a gun. it just the most ridiculous form of payback and it's a bogus case. >> so you have no doubt payback was involved here? >> absolutely. it was involved in the decision to charge him, the jury's decision to convict him. the length of the sentence. it couldn't happen to be a nicer guy, as far as i'm concerned, but this is just an unjust situation. >> mark, i want to play one more
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clip from o.j.'s parole hearing last week. let's listen. >> i knew both of these guys who had my stuff. i was a little upset with them, and i think i wasn't as civil as i should have been. i brought some guys with me who i didn't really know and one i didn't trust, and that's on me. for that, i've been here for five years and all i can do about it since i've been here is be as respectful and as straightforward as i could be with the staff here at lovelock and do my time as best as i can do it. >> mark, do you agree with jeff this is basically pay back? >> yeah, this was a prosecution by proxy or prosecutorial payback. this case normally would have been what's called a da reject, which is when the cops take to the a prosecutor they would have rejected this case and said this is a civil matter.
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if you believe him and i think he made a compelling statement, not in this parole hearing today but the motion for the habeas motion maybe earlier, he consulted with yale and yale, his then lawyer told him, you know, as long as you didn't use force and that was okay to go do, it really is an outrageous sentence. i agree with jeff's shock oh shock it couldn't happen to a nicer guy, but the fact is is that we have a system and just because the prosecutors didn't get a conviction in l.a., doesn't mean that the prosecutors in nevada are supposed to pay him back because it didn't work in los angeles. i mean, when you think about the amount of time he got on this case and the fact that he's actually done five years, and, you know, the news today is doing four more years on this case, i mean, i've had clients
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who have shot and killed people who have done less time. >> wow. >> think about it, nine years for having a screaming fight in a hotel room over property that might well have been his? i mean, it's just an outrageous, outrageous case. again, i have no sympathy for this guy, but if you want to just look at the criminal justice system in action, it's just wrong. >> and yet, mark, he's not going to get -- he's not going to get freedom right now because these were consecutive, correct? >> correct and it's not going to happen on this proceeding -- >> he's fighting for a new trial? >> right, he's fighting for the new trial. it could very well happen on the new trial proceeding. so this is important for him legally because if he wins the new trial, he could arguably say at that point, make a bail application and get released on bail pending the trial. so this is significant for him. it's a big win for him, although, as jeff says, it
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doesn't do much. he's still facing four in these proceedings. >> jeff toobin, mark geragos, thanks very much. a research scientists accused of killing his wife with cyanide enters a plea. that's next. [ male announcer ] this one goes out to all the allergy muddlers. you know who you are. you can part a crowd, without saying a word... if you have yet to master the quiet sneeze... you stash tissues like a squirrel stashes nuts... well muddlers, muddle no more. try zyrtec®. it gives you powerful allergy relief. and zyrtec® is different than claritin® because zyrtec® starts working at hour one on the first day you take it. claritin® doesn't start working until hour three. zyrtec®. love the air.
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hundreds battling nasty
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stomach bug and officials won't tell everything they know. i'll ask dr. sanjay gupta why.
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welcome back. you probably heard about the nasty stomach bug that sickened more than 400 people. tonight health officials believe they know the source, bagged salad contaminated with a parasite. good news they figured out what made so many people sick but what they aren't saying got our
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attention. they aren't naming the specific brand of salad. this is the first thing people want to know so they can avoid getting sick. our chief medical correspondent dr. sanjay gupta joins me now. it seems the name is something they need to know. >> walking around the building today that is what everyone is asking. >> exactly. >> a couple things going on. they don't know yet. this is more complicated sort of investigation than people realize in part because this is mixed salad. you have salad, you have iceberg, romaine, carrots and red cabbage. they were sold in grocery stores and restaurants which means they could have gotten the components from different places and combined them. that's part of the issue. also, you have this notion that these illnesses started to happen in mid-june. so whatever it was, it's probably -- that was a perishable item so it's probably off the shelves by now so it may not make a difference to release a brand.
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you won't throw anything away. >> do they know how the parasite got into the salad? >> they are sort of working with two main theories. they believe it happened before it got into the bag. they don't think it was a contamination from the bags, for example. so really, maybe the irrigation water for the vegetables themselves or during the prewashing process. these are called prewash. they wash them once and put them in the bag. at one of those two steps. if it is irrigation water, it poses a possible concern. is it still irrigating and contaminating more vegetables? >> can people still get sick or is it off the shelves? >> i think for this particular episode, this particular outbreak, it is off the shelves. starting in mid-june, just because of the nature of the food supply it would be out of the grocery stores and out of people's refrigerators by now. if it's not out of your refrigerator, it should be given it's been a month and a half. it can take a long time to get sick after you get the parasite in your body. it could take weeks.
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it's possible to see new cases of this but probably still related to the initial outbreak. >> we have a digital dashboard question. could the ability of these parasites that make people ill have been eliminated if you washed it first? >> it's hard to wash the parasites completely off the vegetables. presumably, they were prewashed. if that wasn't contaminated water, it should have done the job. obviously, it didn't here completely. one thing i will say is you can wash these vegetables again, but the biggest concern is cross-contamination from your kitchen. so you have to literally hold them under the faucet. let the water run over it and then dry the vegetables as well because you can develop a residue as part of the washing process that you almost literally need to clean off. sounds like a lot of work to do but that's what is necessary for this parricide. >> incredible stuff. thanks. >> you got it. thank you.
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>> cyclospora is the name of the parasite. let's get caught up on some of the other stories we're following. isha joins us with the "360 bulletin." the university of pittsburgh research professor accused of killing his wife with cyanide pleaded not guilty today. he was extradited after a nationwide man haunt. she died in april. she was heard of neurology at the university of pittsburgh medical center. usaid department calls it a despeckable pr stunt. bashar al assad joining instagram. the pictures show him and his wife meeting officials, visiting syrians in the hospital and attending political rallies. there are no pictures of syria's bloody war. in seattle, a seal gave birth at a marina right on the dock. the harbor master said mama and her pup stayed on dry ground for a couple of hours before diving back into the water.
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ran out of time for the ridiculous. that does it for us. "early start begins right now. have a great day. teams of torture. new details revealed how ariel castro tortured imprisoned three women in cleveland. this, as he gets ready to speak before a judge and face one of his victims in court. big brother is watching. new information detailing the government's once-secret spying program and how closely the nsa can monitor you without a warrant. game over for a-rod? the yankees slugger reportedly negotiating a settlement. how long he could be forced to sit out. >> long, long. >> long time. good morning, everyone. welcome to