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Iran's Nuclear Secret Revealed; Census Worker Death Mystery; Interview with Bill Clinton

Aired September 25, 2009 - 23:00   ET



ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Tonight, breaking news on the census worker found dead in Kentucky. Confirmation the word "Fed" was written on his body; a coroner confirms that. And the AP now reporting when he was found he was naked and bound with duct tape according to an eye witness.

They're gathering details. We'll have that story shortly.

Plus, tonight's big "360 Interview" with former President Bill Clinton on not sending more troops to Afghanistan and why he now says he was wrong about gay marriage and today's showdown with Iran.

And that's where we begin. A dramatic day and a showdown that at this hour is unresolved. President Obama and the leaders of France and Britain today accused Iran of building a secret underground nuclear plant and put Iran's leaders on notice, giving them two months to comply with inspections or face tougher sanctions.

Strong words but Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad insisted his country has done nothing wrong; that the plant at the second uranium- enrichment facility was not a secret. Iranian officials did notify the IAEA about the facility in a letter this week but only apparently after learning that it had been discovered.

U.S. and French intelligence officials have reportedly been tracking activity at the site for several months. Today, President Obama did not rule out a military response.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: With respect to the military, I've always said that we do not rule out any options when it comes to U.S. security interests. But I will also re-emphasize that my preferred course of action is to resolve this in a diplomatic fashion. It's up to the Iranians to respond.


COOPER: Well, we've been down this road before. This is not the first time Iran has defied international weapons inspections. I talked about the showdown with former President Bill Clinton.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) COOPER: President Obama today announced that Iran has a secret nuclear facility, one that they've been hiding from inspectors for years now. Does this change the situation? Does it change the way we should deal with Iran?

BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Well, that's a decision he's going to have to make. But I think that he and Prime Minister Brown and President Sarkozy did exactly the right thing to bring it out in the daylight.

And so Iran's got some explaining to do. Meanwhile, the United States and our allies will have to decide whether it makes sense to go forward with the plans to talk with them. It may be all the more urgent now that they have done this.

COOPER: They say this is the second or third time that they've been caught cheating though on nuclear issues.


COOPER: Can they be negotiated with?

CLINTON: Well, that depends on what the terms of the negotiations are. I think what they may want to do is talk to them one time anyway just to see now that they know what we know, it's just like Saddam Hussein when he was there. That you can negotiate with anybody if you can verify.

What was that line President Reagan used to have, trust but verify? Is if you -- if can you verify, you can make a deal with anybody. But what it means is there's basically no room for trust. There you can't believe what Ahmadinejad said.


COOPER: And just as all this was getting to break this morning, a group of "Time" magazine editors were sitting down to interview Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. "Time" senior editor Bobby Ghosh was in the room. He joins me now along with Peter Brooks, senior fellow for National Security Affairs at the Heritage Foundation.

Ahmadinejad seemed surprised when you brought this up during the interview. I just want to show the kind of the look on his face. It looked like some of his people started to scramble a little bit. It was very quick but you can kind of see this smirk when Richard Stengel asked him the question.

Do you think he caught him off guard with this?

BOBBY GHOSH, SENIOR EDITOR, TIME MAGAZINE: I think we certainly caught him off guard. He -- until that point, he was completely confident. He was giving answers that he's practiced many times over. But this one caught him completely off guard.

He didn't know exactly how to -- he bobbed and weaved a little bit. He got aggressive and he said it's not our business to tell the American administration about every facility we have and he got a little defensive. He said we have been cooperating with the IAEA and we've been doing everything by the book.

So he was not absolutely certain about how exactly to deal with this information.

COOPER: Peter, Iran says look, this nuclear facility is for peaceful civilian purposes. According to the U.S. government a document obtained by AP, intelligence officials believe it's on a military base, controlled by ...


COOPER: ... Iran's Revolutionary Guard and if that's true that complicates this already tense situation.

BROOKS: Yes. I mean it's very hard to say that this nuclear program doesn't have a military dimension which most security analysts say means nuclear weapons, if it's found on a military base. I mean this is a tremendous concern.

The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps has a very strong hand in Iran's nuclear program and in their missile program so if it is indeed on a military base, it -- despite the fact they may be trying to keep it secret, it really muddies the waters in terms of their real purposes here.

COOPER: We're going to have more with our panelists just after a quick break.

Let us know what you think about Iran's secret nuclear plant. Are you surprised? Join the live chat happening now at

We're still gathering information on this breaking news. Disturbing details in the death of this Kentucky census worker found tied to a tree with a rope around his neck. The word "Fed" written on his body; that's now confirmed by the coroner.

Now new questions after a witness tells the AP he saw the victim was naked, bound with duct tape. Details ahead.

And later, the big "360 Interview:" President Bill Clinton on Afghanistan, politics, and his 180 on gay marriage. For the first time explaining why he has changed his mind.


CLINTON: I have all these gay friends and I have all these gay couple friends. And I was hung up about it. And I decided I was wrong.



COOPER: You're looking at several of Iran's suspected nuclear sites. And of course, it is impossible to know how many there are; more on today's showdown with Iran over revelations of a secret nuclear facility.

We're back with "Times" senior editor, Bobby Ghosh and Peter Brooks, senior fellow for National Security Affairs at the Heritage Foundation.

Bobby, Ahmadinejad is saying the stuff he always says which is look, we have comply with all the requirements. This is -- this was not a secret facility.

What can really be done now? I mean what -- there's talk of sanctions. But unless Russia and China are on board, sanctions are pretty ineffective.

GHOSH: Well, the Russians seem to now be amenable to something. Medvedev has said earlier this week that there are circumstances in which sanctions are the only course. The Chinese are still holding up.

But if President Obama can bring Russia on to his side, then the Chinese will be isolated and there may be room to get the Chinese to take a harder line.

There's a larger questions to be asked which is, will sanctions work at all? If Iran is maybe one year or a year and a half away from possession of the bomb, then sanctions may not work quickly enough for it to be effective.

There is opportunity. The site that we're talking about is not operational yet. It can be stopped. The process can be reversed. The question is at the meeting in Geneva next week when the Iranians are confronted with evidence of this effort to hide this, how are they going to respond?

Are they going to be abashed and ready to talk Turkey, to come to terms or are they going to go back to their traditional mode which is the aggressively deny, deny, deny until one day they say this one? This one, you're talking about this factory?

COOPER: Peter, what do you think is going to happen?

BROOKS: I'm very skeptical. I think Bobby makes a good point. I think time is on Iran's side. And I think when we meet with them next week, they're going to dissemble, they'll parse, they'll spin. The fact is, Anderson, is we have to take them at their word.

They have said they will not discuss or negotiate over the nuclear program. I mean how many times do they have to tell us this? I mean I understand what President Clinton said there about testing their diplomatic intentions so that you can try to bring people together.

But we've been negotiating with them through the EU and other means for six years now since their secret nuclear program was discovered in 2003; six years. Why do we think it's going to change now? I have no reason to believe that Iran is going to change course at all at this point. COOPER: But in terms, Bobby, of possible military strikes, it's not that easy. I mean this is not Iraq that Israel struck years ago when they were developing nuclear facilities. These are hardened sites, underground and heavily protected.

GHOSH: And they are widely dispersed as well. And we are not entirely certain where every last piece of this puzzle is. If Israel's own ability to strike now remains -- is now unclear. They can as well send planes over the territory of Iraq, for instance.

COOPER: For that, they would need U.S. permission?

GHOSH: They need U.S. permission and Iraqi permission. And it's far from certain that a military strike is sort of immediately possible which is why I think the Obama administration doesn't want to strike and try in engaging in a dialogue and using the military strike as the last resort.

COOPER: Peter, is a military strike an option? I mean is there another option besides just jets flying over and bombing?

BROOKS: Right.

Well, I mean there are more draconian economic sanctions, Anderson. For instance, Iran imports about 40 percent to 50 percent of its gasoline. You could have people do provide gasoline such as India and other countries cut that back. You could have the Saudis drop oil prices. You could do other things before a military strike.

But there aren't too many really good options. And if the Iranians are hell bent on a nuclear weapons program, they're not going to stop it. But in terms of a military strike it would be difficult to end the program but you're certainly could push it back.

For instance in 1981 when the Israelis struck the Osirak reactor in Iraq they didn't end the Iraqi nuclear program; they pushed it back about ten years. If you went after the top four facilities in Iran and damage them enough, you would delay Iran becoming a nuclear weapons state. And that's, at this point, because it's been six years or more, 20 years really, your options are really limited.

COOPER: Well, we're going to have to leave it there.

Bobby Ghosh, it's good to have you in the program, thank you very much. Peter Brooks as well, thank you.

BROOKS: Thank you.

COOPER: You can read "Time's" entire interview with Ahmadinejad on our Web site at

Still ahead, the breaking news: new developments in the death of that Kentucky census worker. What the coroner is now confirming. The word "Fed" was written on his body. And what an alleged witness told the AP about the victim being bound with duct tape. And later the big "360 Interview" with former President Bill Clinton, we cover a lot of ground: Afghanistan, gay marriage, serious issues and some not so serious ones.


COOPER: I read a story that -- an interview you gave that Boris Yeltsin was found in his underwear trying to hail a cab late one night.


I don't remember the hailing the cab part but I do remember that he did go down and he tried to get a pizza...

COOPER: Late at night?

CLINTON: Yes. And not fully clothed.



COOPER: Still ahead, my one-on-one interview former president Bill Clinton, his candid comments on same sex marriage, today's explosive political climate and Boris Yeltsin's late night pizza run not fully clothed.

First, Erica Hill joins us with the "360 Bulletin" -- Erica.

ERICA HILL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo might not close by January. The White House acknowledging today thorny legal and logistical questions involved in closing the prison could, in fact, delay President Obama's self-imposed deadline.

A terror suspect accused of plotting to bomb a Dallas skyscraper appearing in federal court today. The 19-year-old Jordanian national is accused of trying to detonate a truck packed with explosives below a 60-story office tower. He was arrested yesterday by FBI agents posing as al Qaeda operatives.

Meantime, Colorado terror suspect, Najibullah Zazi arriving in New York City tonight where he faces charges of conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction. Zazi is accused of plotting to attack New York's commuter trains. That suspected attack apparently set for the September 11th anniversary.

A new audio tape believed to be from Osama bin Laden: the al Qaeda leader warns Europeans to distance themselves from the U.S. from the war in Afghanistan or face retaliation. Bin Laden also denounced civilian deaths caused by NATO air strikes threatening Europe will be held accountable unless they pull troops from the war.

On Capitol Hill, former Democratic Party Chairman Paul Kirk sworn in as the late Edward Kennedy senate replacement today; appointed by the Governor of Massachusetts, now Senator Kirk will serve in the interim position until voters pick a replacement for the late senator's seat in a January special election.

And as the group of 20 world leaders gathered in Pittsburgh today, first lady Michelle Obama treated their spouses to a whirlwind arts tour. It is her first major international meet and greet in the U.S. That tour included performances by world famous cellist Yo-Yo Ma and a trip to the Andy Warhol Museum -- Anderson.

COOPER: It should be interesting.

Still ahead, breaking news in the mysterious death of a Kentucky census worker; investigators will not say whether it was murder or suicide. But tonight, the witness who found the body offers new information that could answer that question.

David Mattingly has the latest.

And our "Prime Suspect" series continues. See how the hunt for one killer led to another when we come back.


COOPER: More now with our breaking news in a disturbing new report about a census worker found dead in Kentucky. The man was discovered with a rope around his neck. He was tied to a tree and his feet were on the ground. We've known that now for several days.

Today, the coroner confirmed that the word Fed was written on his body. Authorities do not know or won't say if it was a murder or a suicide. But tonight new information may answer that question.

David Mattingly is working this story for us. David, what do we know?

DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, the body of census worker Bill Sparkman was found on September 12th. There was a rope around his neck. He was tied to a tree limb. And tonight new details from the Associated Press indicate that what investigators found was much more disturbing than that.

The AP is reporting that Bill Sparkman's body was found naked, his hands and feet were bound with duct tape. There was duct tape over his eyes and neck. He was gagged and something that looked like an ID tag was taped to the side of his neck.

Now these details are reportedly coming from an eyewitness who is among the people who found Sparkman's body. We attempted to contact that person tonight. But we were not successful. We were, however, able to reach the Kentucky state investigators who are still not willing to confirm any of these details.

It is explained to me that they do not want to put out any information that might affect their investigation. And tonight they are still saying they have not nailed down exactly how Bill Sparkman died.

They know that preliminary cause of death is asphyxiation, but they still won't say if it's murder. Of course, the option of suicide and this being an accident would seem very unlikely, Anderson, given these latest details from the AP.

COOPER: What about these reports that the word "Fed" was written on Sparkman's body?

MATTINGLY: We got confirmation of that today from the Clay County coroner. He said that the word "Fed" was written on the body in felt tip marker. But he would not go any further than that. He would not say where on the body, how large these letters were.

We were asking those kinds of questions because we want to know if someone perhaps was sending a message that they attacked Sparkman because he was a federal employee. But we did confirm that the word "Fed" was written somewhere on his body.

COOPER: We've been very careful over the last several days in our reporting on this not to jump to any conclusions or speculation. What is the FBI now saying?

MATTINGLY: Well, yesterday, they were cautioning not to jump to any conclusions on this because they have not confirmed that this was a murder. They have not confirmed that this man was attacked and killed because he was a federal employee.

That has to happen before the FBI will take over this investigation. So we're relying on what the Kentucky state investigators are telling us. And they are going by the book. They are not confirming any of this information. Only to say that this man -- that they're investigating this man's death and are not ruling out anything at this point.

COOPER: David Mattingly, I appreciate the details. Thanks.

Let's "Dig Deeper:" joining us now Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism in California State University in San Bernardino.

Brian, we don't know why somebody would have killed this man or exactly what happened to this man. What do you see now given the AP's report about duct tape and gags and the word "Fed" being scrawled on his body? What are the options in terms of what could have happened?

BRIAN LEVIN, DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR THE STUDY OF HATE AND EXTREMISM: Great question. And initially, look, we're looking at several things. Someone with just a severe violent disorder, could be just an amorphous anger.

An anti-government extremist -- that's another person that's looking more and more likely. But again, there's a lot that we don't know.

Third, it could be someone who's an illegal drug runner, pot farmer in the rural area who felt that this guy was somehow getting too close to their illegal operations.

And lastly, it could be someone with some personal animus against Mr. Sparkman who is trying to cover it up by suggesting a political motivation for it. So those are, you know, the four basic things we could look at. But at this point, this was such a symbolic and personal anger, that I'm led to lean towards someone who has severe anti-government feelings, perhaps someone who's seeking revenge. Maybe they were audited or had some problem with some kind of government official.

COOPER: Ok, to display the victim in this way seems, I mean, telling one way or another. I mean, there's clearly something to that.

LEVIN: A delusion, I mean, quite simply, it's a lynching. The issue is was this something that, you know, is a politically-motivated lynching? Or was there some other nefarious personal motive playing into this picture here? And, again, you could have someone who's an illegal operator of a pot farm who is also an anti-government extremist.

But again, I mean, this was a highly symbolic act. And if these facts that are alleged are true, it causes me to lean towards some kind of anti-government extremist. But, again, everything's on the table. We let the evidence take us where we're going, not the analyst.

COOPER: Brian Levin, I appreciate you being on.

There is a lot we do not know. We're being very cautious on what we're reporting on this and what we are saying. Brian, I appreciate your time, thank you.

You can join the live chat right now at, a disturbing story. Let us know what you think about it.

Coming up next, my interview with President Bill Clinton: why he changed his mind on same-sex marriage, his reactions to the tone of today's politics and some lighter stuff, answers to our lightning round of questions.


COOPER: You had lunch with President Obama. Did you give him any advice about turning gray gracefully?

CLINTON: Turning gray gracefully?


CLINTON: He's getting a little gray, isn't he?

COOPER: He's getting a little gray, yes.

CLINTON: I think he's happy about it. I think, you know, he knows he's young, hip and cool.



COOPER: I sat down with former President Bill Clinton today for the big "360 Interview." We spoke at the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting here in Manhattan. It's a wide-ranging talk full of surprising, pointed and some candid comments.

We'll bring them to you tonight including his hysterical account of Boris Yeltsin's scantily-clad late night pizza run in Washington.

We begin however, with the rising political rhetoric we're hearing at Tea Party protest, town hall meetings and all across the country. Has it reached a level that Clinton has never seen before? You'll hear his opinion.

You'll also find out why for the first time he changed his stance over same-sex marriage. "Uncovering America" tonight, here is the former president.


COOPER: You said you recently changed your mind on same-sex marriage. I'm wondering what you mean by that. Do you now believe that gay people should have full rights to civil marriage nationwide?

CLINTON: I do. I think that well, let me get back to the last one.

You're last word -- I believe historically for 200 and something years, marriage has been a question left to the state and the religious institutions. I still think that's where it belongs.

That is, I was against the constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage nationwide and I still think that the American people should be able to play this out in debates.

I'm just telling you -- but leave Bill Clinton personally and I will change my position. I'm no longer opposed to that. I think if people want to make commitments that last a lifetime, they ought to be able to do it. I have long favored the right of gay couples to adopt children.

COOPER: What made you change your mind? Was there one thing?

CLINTON: I think what made me change my mind -- I looked up one day and I said look at all this stuff you're for. I've always believed that -- I've never supported all the movements of the few years ago to ban gay couples from adoption. Because there are always kids out there looking for a home. And the standard in all adoption cases is what is the best interest of the child?

And there are plenty of cases where the best interest of the child is to let the gay couple take them and give them a loving home.

So I said, you know, I realize that I was, you know, over 60 years old. I grew up in a different time. I was hung up about the word. And I had all these gay friends. I had all these gay couple friends. And I was hung up about it.

And I decided I was wrong. That if -- that our society has an interest in coherence and strength and commitment and mutually reinforcing loyalties. And if gay couples want to call their union marriage and a state agrees -- and several have now -- or a religious body will sanction it, and I don't think the state should be able to stop religious bodies from sanctioning it. I don't think the rest of us should get in the way of that. I think it's a good thing, not a bad thing.

COOPER: Do you think things are more polarized now? When you see the, for example, TEA party protests; when you see there are some of these raucous the town hall meetings. And you hear President Obama being called a Nazi, a socialist. Are things -- is the debate more just nastier now or -- I mean it was pretty tough against you when you were president. Is this just politics as usual?

CLINTON: This intense sort of brutal personal attacks began really in earnest in the mid to late '70s. And have pretty well characterized these things.

After my first two years in Congress, I saw some of the independent body studies that said that I'd actually received more support from the Democrats than President Johnson did in his first two years. But I had the most unanimous opposition from the Republicans of any president in modern history from the other 20 in Congress. So this thing's been building over 30 years.

I do think that it's broken in the people. I think it's different in the people. I think you saw that in the last election. The public is so tired of all this. They want to just get together and go forward with a solution.

The Congressional Republicans need to know that just saying no on everything and praying for the president to fail is not a good strategy.


COOPER: Up next, fighting human trafficking, modern-day slavery; kids and women being used and abused. Former President Bill Clinton and others trying to change that; we'll take you inside the fight when 360 continues.


COOPER: We learn today that five American service members were killed in Afghanistan. The deaths come as top military commander met to discuss bringing more troops into a war that most Americans want to end.

President Obama's under pressure from people, from the Pentagon about what to do next in Afghanistan. Today former President Bill Clinton shared his thoughts with me about the war, the options and what it may take to win.

Here's more of the big "360 Interview" with former President Clinton.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) COOPER: The generals are saying more troops. General McChrystal says more troops. He is going to put in a request very soon. Conservatives are saying President Obama looks weak. And he seems to be seriously reconsidering supporting General McChrystal's idea.

CLINTON: Well, I guess since -- given Hillary's position, I will start by saying I don't know anything. So I'm just telling what you I observe. Some of these things I go out of my way not to be privy to.

But here's what I think he's doing. General McChrystal is clearly right. That is in what he says if we want to prevail there, we need more military forces. But what the president knows is that if we put military resources in there to try to re-create an Afghanistan version of what the Iraqi surge was, it doesn't mean we will prevail. Ok?

Why -- because the surge worked in addition to the skill of our troops because the local Iraqis were sick of the al Qaeda in Iraq.

COOPER: And Afghans are on the fence right now.

CLINTON: And Afghans are on the fence.

I think the president must be thinking well at least I need to wait until we see how this election plays out.

COOPER: So you think it's smart to wait on new troops?

CLINTON: I think -- if I were the president's position now, I might -- I might want a little time. Not because I don't think McChrystal is right. I think that what the military guys told you is right.

But it doesn't follow from what they told you that if you put them in there and we started to win war that -- we're prepared to sustain more casualties, make a bigger commitment that it would work. Unless we also had the kind of commitment you saw in Anbar with the uprising in Iraq.

COOPER: And we saw that on the ground in Helmand. We went out with the Marines. They went out with the local governor trying to get the locals to believe that, you know this governor is going to start to care about their interests.

And after they left, you ask them, you know, you ask these villagers, what do you think? They say, look, we're not supporting America, we're not supporting the Taliban. We're, you know, we're just watching this thing.

CLINTON: Yes. So I don't think that the president is being disrespectful or unheedful of General McChrystal. I think he, like General Petraeus before him, they've really -- these guys get this counterinsurgency. They know what to do. They know how to do it. And our people on the ground are extremely gifted. We can't succeed without them. But alone, it's not enough for success.

COOPER: With CGI -- a lot of people hear about it in the United States. They don't understand the basic fundamentals of how it works. What is the idea of what you're trying to do?

CLINTON: The idea here is that we bring in around the United Nations, we invite leaders from every continent to come here and meet with business leaders from America and around the world. We try to get way beyond the politics and just say if you wanted to change the reality on the ground in this or that way, how would you do it? And then people come in and promise to do it.

COOPER: You've raised tens of billions of dollars. Did you ever think that in your post presidential life you could have perhaps as big an impact as you had as president on tens of millions of lives of people around the world?

CLINTON: I think I'll have to live a very long time to do that. But I think that people -- I operate in a less static-filled environment now so that, you know, I don't have to -- I don't have to float (ph) the fights I had when I was president.

When you're out of office, you can ask yourself what do I care about that will have a big impact on the future? And I don't get derailed by the day's events in the newspaper because I don't have those responsibilities anymore.

So the precise answer to your question is like in this AIDS thing where our foundation provides medicine to half the people in the world and the other two-thirds of the kids get it (ph), that's a huge impact. You can have a huge impact in discreet areas.

But still, being president gives you a chance to shape the lives of hundreds of millions of people. That was an honor. I'll have to live a long time have as big an impact. Maybe I'll get lucky and do it.

COOPER: I know we're out of time. But just a quick lightning round. Last minute -- just some quick answers to quick questions. You still play the sax?

CLINTON: Yes, but not as much as I want to. I'm going to play more this year. One of my resolutions is this coming year I'm going to play more and maybe start taking lessons again.

COOPER: You wear a bracelet on your right hand. What is it?

CLINTON: Yes. It's a Colombian (INAUDIBLE) bracelet given to me by a group of children who sing for peace against the narco traffickers. And I have worn it now for more than seven years.

COOPER: Two last quick question. Rowdiest white house guest when you were president? I read a story that an interview you gave that Boris Yeltsin was found in his underwear trying to hail a cab late one night.

CLINTON: Yes. I don't remember the hailing the cab thing. I do remember that he did go down -- he tried to get a pizza.

COOPER: Late at night? CLINTON: Yes. And not fully clothed. But I also said, Yeltsin, everybody knows he drank too much from time to time. But he hated communism, he believed in freedom. He was the best leader Russia could have had at the time. I adored him.

Yes, he was a rambunctious guy. Yes, on occasion he said and did things he probably shouldn't have. But he -- he was the right man at the right time.

COOPER: Finally, I know you had lunch with President Obama. Did you give him any advice about turning gray gracefully?

CLINTON: Turning gray gracefully?


CLINTON: He's getting a little gray, isn't he?

COOPER: He's getting a little gray, yes.

CLINTON: You know, I think he's happy about it. You know, I think he knows he's young, hip and cool. I think, you know, I actually almost accused him of spraying the gray in there and trying to run this political (INAUDIBLE).

COOPER: Mr. President, thank you very much.

CLINTON: Thanks.

COOPER: Thanks so much.


COOPER: We posted some behind-the-scenes photos of my interview with former President Clinton. Check them out at

He's being called the flying stalker; a pilot accused of using his plane to harass his target on the ground; the story of that coming up.

And explosive video surfacing in the trial two of men accused of extorting millions of dollars from actor John Travolta after his son's death.

Details when 360 continues.


COOPER: Let's get caught up in some other stories. Erica Hill joins us again with the "360 Bulletin" -- Erica.

HILL: Anderson, a new video reportedly shows two people accused of trying to extort millions from actor John Travolta asking the actor's attorney for $25 million. In exchange, for the form that Travolta signed to stop the ambulance from taking his dying son to a hospital so he could be, instead, flown to Florida. Those details on the video coming from "People" magazine which has watched the tape. The defendants eventually agreed to a $15 million exchange.

Now a month later Travolta filed a complaint with the cops that led to the trial which is now under way in the Bahamas. The defendants have pleaded not guilty.

Police in California are arresting this pilot who they say stalked his ex-girlfriend by repeatedly flying his plane low over her house. His girlfriend filed for a restraining order last year. He was not served with it, however, until he was arrested after landing a single engine plane.

And a woman who had the wrong embryo implanted gave birth to a baby boy today according to a statement from the couple. The couple said a fertility clinic implanted another couple's embryo into Carolyn Savage's uterus. Now in essence, she became an unwitting surrogate for another family. After learning of the mix-up, the Savages decided to carry the baby through to term and to give him to the genetic parents.

And a "360 Follow" for you, Charles Manson follower Susan Atkins has died in a California prison. She admitted to killing actress Sharon Tate 40 years ago. Atkins had been battling brain cancer. She lost her final bid for parole earlier this month. Susan Atkins was 61.

COOPER: Our "Prime Suspect" series concludes tonight with a search for a serial killer; a mad man who terrorized Los Angeles for decades.

We're going to introduce you to the detective who spent years on his trail. We'll also show you the stunning twist in the investigation; a surprise that nobody was prepared for. It's an extraordinary story with an unbelievable ending.

Kara Finnstrom has more in tonight's "Prime Suspect."


KARA FINNSTROM, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This man, LAPD detective Dennis Kilcoyne is it hunting for a phantom. For more than 24 years on the streets, a serial killer has come and gone, then he came back to kill again.

Police say he murdered Barbara Ware; she is one of his 12 victims. All killed here in south Los Angeles; all but one black women, some working as prostitutes.

DET. DENNIS KILCOYNE, LAPD: He would spot them and does spot them, victimize them and then just discards their body in alleys like they're trash.

He is a monster.

FINNSTROM: He's nicknamed "The Grim Sleeper" because the killings suddenly stopped as if he was asleep for 13 years.

But in 2007, police think he struck again. The files on him are thick. And the cops do have the killer's DNA. KILCOYNE: We've got this beautiful DNA profile, all these dashes and dots and this and that but there's no name and address or face to go with it.

FINNSTROM: They've searched all the federal and state data bases and could not make a match. So Kilcoyne brought in Detective Diane Webb. Webb monitors the 5,200 registered sex offenders in L.A. And though DNA had gotten them nowhere, she still thought it might be the key.

DET. DIANE WEBB, LAPD: You can't escape your DNA. It means you've been there.

FINNSTROM: So Webb had an idea. Data bases have gaping holes and she knew she did not have a DNA sample from all the sex offenders in her registry.

O-C: The detectives' trail then led to local police stations like this one where sex offenders or 290s, as officers call them, have to register. The idea was to get all 90 something of those sex offenders on Webb's database to provide a saliva sample through a DNA kit and to maybe get their match and their man.

(voice-over): the samples go to the crime lab in Sacramento, then detectives wait. It's a long shot. And even today, everyone is still stunned by how this would turn out.

WEBB: I didn't think we'd get lucky enough but we got lucky in another way.

FINNSTROM: it would be months before the lab called. There was a match. They were faxing it in. The new DNA samples led to this man, 73-year-old John Floyd Thomas Jr. He is not "The Grim Sleeper." But his DNA match makes him the prime suspect in a string of other murders.

KILCOYNE: Lo and behold, he is another serial killer and it just snowballs. He's responsible for many, many murders. And they hit the jackpot.

FINNSTROM (on camera): detectives believe Thomas is the so-called "Westside Strangler," a serial killer who terrorized neighborhoods in West Los Angeles in the '70s and '80s. Thomas is now charged with raping and murdering seven elderly women. He pleaded not guilty at his arraignment this week.

Detective Rick Jackson had been looking for him for a long time.

DET. RICK JACKSON, LAPD: It's a great feeling to be able to tell a family member news that we have closed out a case.

FINNSTROM (voice-over): But Detective Kilcoyne worries there may be no DNA trail leading him to his guy, "The Grim Sleeper."

KILCOYNE: We're probably going to find that this guy is somebody who has a family and home. He has a regular job and just every once in a while he, for whatever reason, he wanders off and becomes the devil. FINNSTROM: They have not heard from "The Grim Sleeper" in two years. But the last time he disappeared for 13 years. So they assume he is still out there.

Kara Finnstrom for CNN, Los Angeles.


COOPER: Bizarre. On Monday, Drew Griffin from our special investigations unit brings us an exclusive report.

At the time this fire on Bell Mountain (ph) was the most destructive act of environmental sabotage in U.S. history. But there would be more fires, far more damage (INAUDIBLE) compromising message: don't mess with the trees, the air or the water or they'll come after you.


DREW GRIFFIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: At the time were you considering yourself, "Hey, this is a terror cell?"

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think pretty much we considered ourselves being at war, you know, with the government.


COOPER: On Monday, the story of how those guys were finally shut down.

Coming up next, our "Shot of the Day:" an attempt to sink the world's longest basketball shot. What happens? We'll show you and try to figure out if it's real or not.


COOPER: Erica, time for tonight's "Shot." We actually have a double "Shot" tonight. First one, an astounding basketball shot that begs the question, is it real or fake? Obviously that will the alternate thing -- is it real? Check it out. Student at Texas A&M, throws a basketball from the top tier of Aggie Football Stadium...

HILL: Third deck there.

COOPER: ... straight into a basket.




COOPER: Let's see it from the different angle.

HILL: There's another angle that's better. Here we go. It's wild. They swear that this is not fake; that there was no fancy editing. On their Web site, these guys called "Dude Perfect." It's six guys. They swear it's all real.

COOPER: Well, I don't know. I don't know what to believe. They seem excited.

HILL: I would be excited, too, if I made that shot.

COOPER: It's amazing. If it's true, it's pretty cool.

HILL: It is very cool. They have a number of these videos that are pretty cool.

And then there's one of them that they did, this summer camp edition that they're actually raising money to send kids to summer camp.

They're doing something good with all these crazy basketball shots.

COOPER: Our favorite shot of the week, at least mine was this.




HILL: It doesn't get old, does it.

COOPER: No. I like when he starts to lift his legs. How cute is that.

HILL: He's itching to go. Did you make note of these moves for the next time you go see Ellen DeGeneres?

COOPER: I know so I made note. I literally was like bouncing around like this baby after I saw this video for a couple of days.

HILL: I did hear the music coming from your office, Beyonce on a loop.

COOPER: Yes. Yes.

HILL: That's a good one.

Do we still have the crew doing their dance?

COOPER: Do we?

HILL: Their Beyonce? "Single Ladies." I don't know, they're giving that baby a run for his money. Look at Bob.

COOPER: There we go.

HILL: Yes.

I think the first time we did this, Jerry, who's on the right of your screen...

COOPER: There we go.

HILL: I think he might have got a date out of that.

COOPER: I like it. I like the split screen.

HILL: Yes.

You're making him cough again.

COOPER: Don't get me coughing. Wow. I never saw this part of it.

I love Bob's -- and his hand thing that he made.

HILL: He made a full cuff out of foil. It's amazing. It was really well done.

COOPER: Hey, that does it for "360." Thanks for watching.

"LARRY KING" starts right now.