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Pro-Russian Mob Seizes Ukrainian Naval Headquarters; The Search for MH 370; Prosecutor To Close Case On Monday In Oscar Pistorius Trial; New Lead In Madeleine McCann Disappearance

Aired March 19, 2014 - 16:00   ET


BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: And tonight, raising the stakes: tensions run high as armed men seize a naval base in Crimea whilst Ukraine gives the region's separatist leaders a deadline.

Also ahead, nearly seven years after Madeleine McCann vanished without a trace, police say they now have got a new lead. We'll speak to a criminologist into the investigation into the toddler's disappearance.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's it unless somebody offers me a kidney or unless a cadaver becomes available. This is what keeps me alive.


ANDERSON: As thousands around the world trade organs on the black market, we debate whether this multi-million dollar illegal industry should be made legal.

ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN London, this is Connect the World with Becky Anderson.

ANDERSON: A very good evening from London. First for you an update on the latest developments concerning Malaysia Flight MH 370. 12 days since the plane vanished and the families of the passengers on board are at breaking point. They want answers that no one at this stage has. We're going to have more on that frustration later in the show.

On the investigation front, Malaysia's transport minister says some data had been deleted from what was a flight simulator found in the captain's home. We don't know whether this is significant, but computer experts are trying to recover it. And the FBI also helping with that.

Background checks have been completed on all the passengers except those from Russia and Ukraine. The computer checks have turned up nothing suspicious. Also, Australian search teams are zeroing in on the southern section of the Indian ocean. They say it's based on work done by U.S. investigators concerning just how far the jet could have flown on its fuel reserves.

I say more on that coming up on the show.

We are also tonight following major new developments in Crimea. Hundreds of armed men seize the main naval headquarters in Sevastopol today without firing a shot, it's got to be said.

Pro-Russian forces took away Ukraine's naval chief for leading the acting Ukrainian president to deliver an ultimatum. He said if all hostages weren't released then all, quote, provocations halted by 9:00 pm local time, that was an hour ago, authorities in Kiev would take action.

Well, Ukraine's security chief meantime says Kiev is working on a plan to withdraw Ukrainian soldiers and their families in Crimea after Russia annexed the territory.

Well, Ukraine's president didn't specify what actions his government would take if his ultimatum wasn't met, but it's not believed to be military actions.

I said that deadline an hour ago.

Nick Paton Walsh live tonight in the Crimean capital of Simferapol.

What actions, if any, could they take? And have you seen or heard any indication as to what's going on at this point?

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, there's no indication at this point that Admiral Sergey Gaiduk, who is the head of the Ukrainian Navy held, it seems, by these protesters, pro-Russian militia who stormed that headquarters has been released.

We heard from the interim president Olek Turchynov that they would consider measures, quote, of a technical and technological nature. Now given the fact that the administration in Kiev has been quite clear it doesn't seek a military confrontation with Moscow, we suspect those probably refer to the utilities and infrastructure which Crimea is reliant upon from the Ukrainian mainland.

So that could involve water, gas, electricity perhaps being interfered with in some way. But it isn't entirely clear what they intend to do. And I have to say we're hearing a variety of different signals, some all at once from the new administration in Kiev. At the same time, they announced they'd like now to see Russians get visas before they come into Ukraine, that's a significant move for a populations that have been intermingling for -- ever since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

So certainly I think we're seeing a counter reaction from the Ukrainian government, but it doesn't really correspond to what's happening on the ground here in Crimea where we seem to hear every hour of a new instance at another base -- I've just spoken to some soldiers at one base in Bakhchysarai where we've regularly been to and they said that about an hour ago Russian soldiers came into the part of the base where 15 of them have been refusing to leave for the past week and at gunpoint told them to leave and marched them off the base.

They're trying to work out what to do next, but that really repeats a picture we're seeing across the Crimean peninsula.

Now where the pressure is on from pro-Russian protesters, often backed up by Russian troops telling these people to clear out.

And frankly, the noise we hear from Kiev, while this protest is going on, seems a little distant and divorced from that reality, because many of these Ukrainian soldiers, when you speak to them, feel pretty isolated -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Listen, Nick, some Crimeans, of course, have celebrated the region's annexation, many of them of course, others though are quite nervous and fearful. What kinds of concerns have those groups been voicing to you?

WALSH: Well, the pro-Ukrainian contingent here is pretty hard to find, really, very silent. So even outside one of the bases we spoke to there was a wife of one of the Ukrainian soldiers inside that base. She was open in saying how she felt her country had been taken hostage, or certainly the Crimean peninsula at this point.

But the real fear, too, is the Tatar ethnic minority. About one in 10 of those people living on the Crimean peninsula are deeply concerned, because the day they heard the de facto Crimean government here suggest they may have to vacant lands, suggesting they're perhaps squatters on parts of the Crimean peninsula.

And we saw how at a funeral yesterday they are deeply nervous.


WALSH: Vladimir Putin said he annexed Crimea without a drop of blood, well, that may not be entirely true here at the funeral of Tatar activist Rejat Amatov (ph). Abducted two weeks ago, his corpse was found the day Crimeans voted in a referendum. He'd been handcuffed, his head bound in tape. The Tatars boycotted the vote and have pleaded with here to remain calm. But they are cornered.

A deeply nervous community here, this funeral beginning as Moscow declares Crimea now part of Russia.

The Tatars endured deportation by Stalin, Moscow now sees them as its subjects again, promising to protect their rights. But this violent death, they fear, is perhaps a bid to start something.

"They want to light a fire," he says. "It's been done, because it's useful for somebody. And we know who."

Rejat's (ph) widow told me he'd always fought for justice, but she's unlikely to see much of that soon.

Far north in windy Novorizornay (ph), the new Crimea is moving fast to oust the old. These Ukrainian troops face pro-Russian protesters who peacefully gather asking them to defect. This local official gives them a decree saying they have until 10:00 am to surrender.

But tempers are hot.

"There was a referendum," she shouts.

He tries to soothe the crowd.

In the back stands Tatiana (ph), whose husband Andrey (ph) is serving on the base.

"Armed people came here," she says, "and just seized us. It's the 21st Century and they took part of Ukraine because someone wanted it."

Suddenly, this truck arrives. Civilians mixed with the uniformed men who still -- even now Moscow calls this Russia -- don't admit they're Russian.

In the capital, another base is being stormed, but first Ukrainian soldier reported killed in Crimea.

Dusk is falling and the Russians move in as far away in Kiev these Ukrainian soldier's commander, the prime minister, says a military phase of the war is beginning.


WALSH: Now, at that base this morning a tractor was used by the pro- Russian protesters to smash open the gates. They didn't burst inside, but apparently they stayed at that entrance with Russian troops backing them up. A Russian flag raised alongside the Ukrainian flag over that base, fitting into a pattern we're seeing across the peninsula, Becky, the pressure really on and many Ukrainian soldiers have very little choice but to give up -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Nick Paton Walsh on the story for you tonight.

One of our iReporters is again stirring debate in a piece that she has done for us. Maya Mikaluk is a freelance photographer ins Kiev. She describes herself as a Russian speaking Ukrainian and is upfront about having been part of the anti-Yanukovych Maidan protests.

This time, Maya is taking issue with the idea that letting Crimea vote in its own future was the best solution as a warning about what may come next. Read what she has to say, see her striking photographs and leave your own thoughts

Still to come tonight, UN investigators say both sides in the Syrian civil war are terrorizing civilians while the world does little more than stand by and watch. We'll take a look at a new report. Details of the most recent alleged atrocities for you.

Nearly seven years after Madeleine McCann's disappearance in Portugal, police say they have a new lead. Could this be a game changer? More on that coming up.

And, with the focus on those missing, it can be easy to forget those left behind. 12 days into the search, we'll get a report from Kuala Lumpur where many of the passengers families of the Malaysia flight are staying.


ANDERSON: Welcome back.

A new UN report says the battlefield in Syria is becoming more complex as the civil war stretches into its fourth year. Investigators say hundreds, hundreds of armed groups are now operating in the country. They singled out one al Qaeda linked group accusing it of mass executions. Mohammed Jamjoom is following the story from Beirut tonight. And he joins us now.

Mohammed, what can you tell us about this group that's been singled out in this report? And what chance, if any, of a resolution at this point?

MOHAMMED JAMJOOM, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It doesn't look like there's much chance of a resolution, Becky. In fact, this report that we're talking about by the commission of inquiry on Syria, it's a very damning report. It paints a very grim picture of what's going on on the ground in Syria.

Now this report cites only what it calls the most egregious examples of human rights violations committed in the past three months, from January 20 until March 10. What it singles out is ISIS, that's the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. They say that they carried out hundreds of mass executions in the past few months. This is due to that war that's erupted within the boarder Syrian civil war between various rebel factions. ISIS, of course, is al Qaeda backed.

But this report also lists perpetrators saying that they say are responsible for the violence in Syria and that should be according to the report prosecuted for war crimes and atrocities. Among the groups listed on this perpetrators list are the heads of various Syrian intelligence agencies, those in charge of detention facilities where torture occurs, officials at airports where barrel bombings are carried out, where they're executed and planned, and also heads of pro-government militias and heads of various rebel groups.

In short, this report has a lot of damning evidence that's spread out amongst various factions within the Syrian civil war, those fighting parties.

Now the report says that the international community hasn't done nearly enough, that compation can only go so far. They call upon the international community and amongst states that have influence, that have sway with those warring factions in Syria to redouble their efforts to make sure that some sort of political solution can be negotiated. They say until that time, nothing will get better in Syria, that the atrocities will continue to be committed. And they do say that war crimes should be prosecuted and that the international community should not stand idly by and let these happen with impunity -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Mohammed Jamjoom on the story for you. Mohammed, thank you.

To South Africa now. And a surprising day in Pretoria's high court. It often seems it's the state's own evidence and witness testimony that is working to bolster Oscar Pistorius's defense. The murder trial has reached what is an unexpected pause as the prosecution has announced it will rest its case next week.

Robyn Curnow has the details.


ROBYN CURNOW, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORREPSONDENT: Oscar Pistorius leaving week three of his murder trial sooner than expected.

GERRIE NEL, PROSECUTOR: Well, there is no option, but I respectfully request that we postpone this matter to Monday.

CURNOW: The judge granting the request. The prosecutor also telling the court he'll wrap up his case next week.

NEL: We also wish to place on record that we perceive that we'll call four or five more witnesses.

CURNOW: The surprise announcement on the heels of a morning that saw expert witness after expert witness take the stand. Most damning for Pistorius, who says he was shooting at a burglar, the ballistics expert.

CAPT. CHRISTIAN MANGENA, POLICE BALLISTICS EXPERT: Now I tried the position where she's seated on the toilet seat, but (inaudible) that, it's too low for that.

CURNOW: Facing Reeva Steenkamp in a defensive position when the Olympian shot and killed her.

But the same expert also corroborating key pieces of Pistorius's own version of events.

MANGENA: Shooting without the prosthesis, holding the firearm, this is the most (inaudible) position that he could have shot.

CURNOW: CNN's legal expert saying the onus is still on the state entering week four.

KELLY PHELPS, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: You have to remember the state has to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. And essentially right now my feeling this week is that while the state has putting forward an alternative to Pistorius' version of events, they are by no means ruling his version of events out.

CURNOW: Meanwhile, as the state wraps up its case early next week, it's expected one of the defense's first witnesses will be Oscar Pistorius.

Robyn Curnow, CNN, Pretoria, South Africa.


ANDERSON: Live from London, this is Connect the World. You're watching NCN. I'm Becky Anderson.

Coming up, after years of searching, British police, they finally have a new lead in the Madeleine McCann disappearance case. We're going to have an update on that.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A shortage of organs and a surplus of poor people...


ANDERSON: Why poverty is fueling the illegal trade of donor trafficking. What should be done about it?


ANDERSON: You're watching Connect the World live from London.

Now police in Britain are focusing on a new suspect in the Madeleine McCann case. She is the British toddler who went missing in 2007 in Portugal. Well, the new suspect who is thought to have committed a string of break-ins and sexual assaults not far from where Madeleine disappeared.


ANDERSON: A fresh lead with new hopes Madeleine McCann case. Seven years after she went missing from Prior de Lush (ph) in Portugal, Scotland Yard Wednesday released this photo. They say sweater belongs to a man who assaulted five British girls in the Algarve all aged 10 or less.

This all happened, they say, between 2004 and 2006, before Madeleine went missing and just a few kilometers away from where the then 3-year-old was last seen.

Described by his victims as being tanned with dark unkempt here, unshaven and smelling of tobacco and after shave, the attacker, like Madeleine's abductor, has never been found.

Detectives interviewed on a BBC crime watch program broadcast on Wednesday night say the similarities are uncanny.

DETECTIVE INSPECTOR TIM DOBSON, LONDON METROPOLITICAN POLICE: There are similarities -- young, white child in bed and a (inaudible) apartment on the western Algarve out of season.

ANDERSON: Last year, the UK and Portuguese police reopened the case into Madeleine's disappearance, but first Portuguese investigation closed in 2008 after her parents, Kate and Jerry McCann were removed as suspects.

These developments are the strongest lead investigators have had in a long time. But the man in the burgundy top is not the only suspect investigators are pursuing. There are six images of individuals police want to speak to in connection with the case.

DETECTIVE CHIEF INSPECTOR ANDY REDWOOD, LONDON METROPOLITICAN POLICE: These matters are very serious. It's very important primarily for us to understand and identify who this offender is, firstly, because fearing nobody been prosecuted for these horrible offenses against these young people. And secondly, once we've identified this offender, we need to be able to prove or disprove whether these offenses and that offender is connected to the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

ANDERSON: A new lead in a case which has been plagued with false starts and false hopes.


ANDERSON: Well, to find out how this latest turn in the investigation may play out and what it may mean, I'm joined by criminologist and child protection experts Mark Williams Thomas.

Just how significant is this?

MARK WILLIAMS THOMAS, CHILD PROTECTION EXPERT: Well, it's a real focus. The Metropolitan Police have now said that they are after an individual. They've specified and narrowed it down in relation to a potential identity of the individual. Although it's fairly wide. If anybody knew who this person was, I think they'd be able to come forward. And that is where their focus is.

It's more about eliminating rather than necessarily saying this person is the person responsible for the disappearance of Madeleine. That's all major investigations, it's about eliminating individuals. And once you've eliminated the individuals, you then create suspects.

ANDERSON: Mark, let me just get our viewers a reminder of the sort of timeline of what happened, because this is some time ago. We're talking seven years ago now. And the -- one assumes it was a guy -- they're talking about here, potentially even further back than that.

Let's just remind our viewers, though, it was may 2007 when Madeleine McCann, of course, disappeared, sparking one of the most high profile missing child cases in history.

Her parents say they left their three children in a Portuguese holiday villa while they went to a restaurant just 50 meters away. And then when they returned she was gone.

Well, take a look at the known timeline of events.

At 8:30 pm, Madeleine's parents leave the apartment and go for dinner with seven friends. AT 9:05, Jerry McCann leaves to check on the children. And then returns to the restaurant.

Just under half an hour later, friend Matthew Oldfield checks McCann's apartment. He returns. When he hears no noise from the children's room, assuming, of course, that all is well.

Finally at 10:00, Kate returns to the apartment and finds Madeleine gone and the children's bedroom window is open.

38 people of interest in relation to Madelein's disappearance as well as trying to find out more about 530 known sex offenders across Europe. That has been the extent of this investigation over seven years. Now we seem to have somebody that at least is on the police -- was in the police's zone if not somebody they actually have identified.

I mean, should the McCann's be feeling hopeful at this point?

THOMAS: Well, they're always hopeful. Jerry and Kate will live to the hope that one day they'll find out. They will never give up that search. They will never give up hoping that one day that they'll get some positive news.

They are very aware that the reality and the likelihood, of course, as the years go on and we're now seven years, you know, after that disappears.

The problem is with this investigation, it is a Portuguese police investigation. The British police have now been brought on board and to start to look at this investigation. The problem is is the relationship between both Portuguese and the British police is one that is at best difficult, because there is not a communication level that is really open.

ANDERSON: And just how tough is that for the McCanns given that, you know, their child is still missing and there's absolutely no closure on this, don't know whether she is dead or alive.

THOMAS: By and large we know further forward now that we were in 2007. We know nothing more. And so it's incredibly difficult for them.

The problem with the police is that there is a -- the only people that will solve this will be the people in Portugal. The problem with the British appeal today is that it's out in the UK. They are paying, I understand, for adverts on social media to take place in Portugal, but this is not something that's being instigated or being promoted in Portugal.

So we have an offense that takes place in Portugal where the potential witnesses are in Portugal, where the media by and large is being done in the UK, and obviously you're covering it, but in Portugal where the most important element is, they are not covering this big.

ANDERSON: When you look at the scene again, when you hear what the police have released today, what goes through your mind?

THOMAS: Well, I've been out there numerous times. In fact, I was out there a couple of days after she was reported missing. And I think what is very clear is that there was a clear failing to preserve the scene to secure the evidence in the early stages. And that's really just about experience form the Portuguese police.

But we then move forward to a position whereby they really didn't build the foundations, they didn't look at what was close to them. They didn't eliminate all the people. and the problem is it's a very transient community there. It's a holiday village, so people will come and stay and then they'll disappear quite quickly.

So it was really important to circulate that through the national media.

What we didn't get is a clear strategy, certainly as far as the media goes, in those very early days. We didn't know until the Thursday after her disappearance after the weekend what she was even wearing, what an even potential timeline was. And of course, those valuable hours are really important.

ANDERSON: Smart. Let's hope that this is significant and this is a really good lead for the sake of the McCanns.

THOMAS: Absolutely. We can but hope.

ANDERSON: Thank you, Mark.

The latest world news headlines are ahead here on CNN. Plus, the agony of the unknown, families of the passengers of missing Malaysia Airlines flight protest the lack of any information about their loved ones. We'll report from Kuala Lumpur.

Plus, all eyes on Moyes as Manchester United fight to remain in the Champion's League. Stay with us.


ANDERSON: Australia says it's zeroing in on the southern section of the Indian Ocean as the search for Malaysia Flight MH370 continues. That's done on work -- based on work done by the US investigators involved concerning just how far the jet could have flown on its fuel reserves.

Well, Ukraine's acting president issued an ultimatum today after pro- Russian forces seized a naval headquarters in Crimea and detained the commander. Oleksandr Turchynov said if all hostages weren't released and all provocations halted, authorities in Kiev would take action of a technical nature. The deadline for that passed an hour and a half ago.

Janet Yellen has wrapped up her first policy-making meeting as head of the US Federal Reserve. She said the bank will continue easing back on its economic stimulus plan but announced no change in interest rates for the time being.

And British police are focusing on a new suspect in the case of Madeleine McCann, who went missing in 2007. The man is suspected in a string of break-ins and sexual assaults in Portugal in the same area and the time frame as in the McCann disappearance.

It has now been 12 days since the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, nearly two weeks of what has been an agonizing wait for the families of the passengers on the plane. Earlier today, their frustration over the lack of any tangible new developments boiled over into what was a melee of sadness and commotion. Kyung Lah was there and has the story.



KYUNG LAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): One woman's desperate protest. She wails, "My son, Li Li, was on the plane!" As cameras rolled, police and the Malaysian military move in.


LAH: Through a crush of reporters, police forcibly carry her away from the cameras to another room. We were all here for the government's daily news conference.


LAH: Two other Chinese women hold up a protest sign, crying out to the cameras. "We need the truth," she says, "and want the international media to help get information from the Malaysian government." But police move in again.

LAH (on camera): What are you doing? What are you doing?

LAH (voice-over): Pushing us, forcing us out of the way.

LAH (on camera): Back off! Back off!

LAH (voice-over): I'm yelling because we're getting crushed. Police also carried those women away.

LAH (on camera): That's just one sense of the frustration that's mounting here, not just in Malaysia, but also in Beijing. Families extremely distraught. They just don't know what happened to their family members.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Excuse me, you were in the room with them. What happened, sir? What happened?

LAH (voice-over): Back inside the conference room, the government started its news briefing on time, referring to the women's protests only briefly.

HISHAMUDDIN HUSSEIN, ACTING MALAYSIAN TRANSPORT MINISTER: I fully understand what they are going through. Emotions are high.

LAH: Back outside in the hallway, the door opens and closes for the police and officials.

LAH (on camera): But where did you take the family?

LAH (voice-over): Ignoring our questions until finally --


LAH: Once again, blocked by police, officials refusing to talk to us.



LAH: Li Li's mother was taken away from the building by police. We don't know where, but could see that she was still sobbing.

Kyung Lah, CNN, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.


ANDERSON: Well, as Kyung Lah's report shows, this is much more than an aviation story, it is a human story about 239 people and their families. People like Muktesh Mukherjee and Xiaomo Bai, a couple who left their two young boys with Bai's mum in Beijing while they went on holiday in Vietnam.

Or New Zealander Paul Weeks, who was en route to Mongolia, where he worked for a mining company. And IBM executive Philip Wood, who had a love for motorcycles and was known to have a great sense of music.

To find out how the families for these passengers must be coping with the situation -- or not, as the case may be -- I'm joined tonight by Dr. James Thompson, who is a psychologist. This sense of dealing with the unknown surely is just excruciating.

JAMES THOMPSON, PSYCHOLOGIST: Yes. I think to mourn someone when you don't have their body is hard enough. But here what we have is something worse, which is a long time in which you can build up hope.

The extraordinary thing is that many people cannot believe their loved one has died until they have actually seen the corpse, and I use that word advisedly. It really is the thing which explains it.

But they'd been given support of their most unrealistic fantasy that the person's clinging to a raft somewhere, that they're trapped somewhere in an airport. And so, this is wrenching them apart even more than the knowledge of something bad having happened.

ANDERSON: So, the consequences of what have been conflicting reports and these conspiracy theories just adding to --


THOMPSON: Yes. It corresponds almost to torture.

ANDERSON: -- their sense of despair.

THOMPSON: Because what I have seen is people who have had to actually brace themselves to see a dead child. The child may be 16, 17, or something, and people say don't look at the body, and they say, you don't understand a mother. A mother's used to a child's body. OK, the body's been damaged, but I see that and I can believe.

But the mothers we have seen, and the parents, are going to be denied that, it seems. And meanwhile, of course, they're getting this very conflicting story. They're watching an argument unfold, a dispute.

ANDERSON: I want to just take a moment to listen back to some of the raw emotion that spilled over today.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): We aren't satisfied with the Malaysian government's inaction. We have no information at all. They only say, "Keep searching," from South China Sea to Malacca Strait to Andaman Sea. I just don't know where the plane has gone to.


ANDERSON: When you've dealt with trauma patients in the past, is it correct to suggest that whatever the narrative, you have to have a sense of what happened and why --


ANDERSON: -- just to get with that.

THOMPSON: You see, we do have a just world hypothesis. We're spoiled, in a way. We get on planes and mostly there's no problem. So we have high expectations of life, now. We don't have what mother's used to go to, losing a third of their children or men dying in combat.

So, it's a shock and it's damaged our absolute expectations of safe, "see you in a moment," after the flight's finished. It'll be OK.

ANDERSON: What you have, though, got, which is almost unique here, are some Chinese families who, of course, with the one child policy in China, are going through this sort of semi-grieving process about their only child.

THOMPSON: Anyone with a single child has started, they are hostages to fortune. Well, anyone with a child, even two children, are hostages to fortune compared with what we were like even four generations ago.

ANDERSON: What can the Malaysians do to improve the lot of these relatives?

THOMPSON: I think they should have been much closer to them. You're having to communicate -- communication is like a beacon flashing, which just says "I'm still here." And I think they've been following a lawyerly approach, which makes sense. But it's not the right psychological one.

They should have had their ambassador in the hotel there. They should have had lots of people right close to them. And when they arrived, which is obvious, people start with pain and anxiety, but then they move to anger. That always happens. How can reality do this to me? It is so unfair?

They should have been much closer, they should have embraced these people and done the press conference right next to them. And what they've said is, basically, "Lady, you're a nuisance to the investigation." Wrong call.

ANDERSON: James Thompson, a USA psychologist making a lot of sense this evening. Sir, thank you very much, indeed, for joining us.

You're watching CNN live from London. This is CONNECT THE WORLD, I'm Becky Anderson for you. How much would you pay to save your life, and would you break the law to do it? We're going to go inside the shadowy world of organ trafficking after this.


ANDERSON: Every year, thousands of organs are bought and sold on a flourishing black market, with a single organ selling for up to $200,000. Some might consider that a small price to pay if it's about saving your own life, but it's a complicated life-and-death business, with legal, moral, and ethical issues involved.

They are the subject of a documentary called "Tales from the Organ Trade," which tackles the problem from all points of view. I sat down with the film's director to discuss.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is one of the great miracles of modern medicine, the saving of a dying patient with a transplanted body part. But there is a worldwide shortage of organs and a surplus of poor people who believe that the solution to their suffering is not to receive an organ, but to sell one.


ANDERSON (voice-over): Would you buy a kidney on the black market if your life depended on it? Would you sell your kidney to buy a better life for your family? Well, this is a choice made by thousands of people every year. With a shortage of organs and the desperation of patients, the World Health Organization estimates that the illegal organ trade is a multimillion-dollar industry worldwide.

"Tales from the Organ Trade" is a new documentary that follows the heart-rendering decisions of organ donors and buyers across eight countries, from the Philippines to Canada.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): We have no one to help us. We have no family. We are both orphans. That's why we have to fend for ourselves.

ANDERSON: Director Ric Esther Bienstock says she found there are no simple answers.

RIC ESTHER BIENSTOCK, DIRECTOR, "TALES FROM THE ORGAN TRADE": And I think that you can't just talk about this in terms of exploitation without really understanding what drives the trade. And what drives the trade are desperate people, generally in the first world and developed countries, who are choosing between life and death.

And they're absolutely in despair, and that's what makes them -- if they have the wherewithal and the drive and the ability, to seek out a kidney overseas.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I effectively have to decide at this point whether, if I can't find a donor in this country fairly soon, I have to decide whether I'm willing to take on my soul the ethical burden of purchasing a kidney from somebody or choose to die.

BIENSTOCK: And on the other side of the equation, you have people living in abject poverty, who feel that there's only one way for them to make a bit of cash to buy a house or put their child through school.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Sometimes I only make $2.50 for our needs for the whole week, that's it.

BIENSTOCK: I think that we do the subject matter a disservice by just saying this is pure exploitation, this is wrong. I'm not saying it's right, I'm saying you have to understand the driving forces. Because what I see happening is the authorities and the medical establishment just talking about cracking down on the black market, without providing solutions.

ANDERSON: Diseases like diabetes are increasing across the Western world, and the desperate need for kidneys leaves many patients struggling with difficult decisions, as depicted in the documentary, to live with the painful and time-consuming process of dialysis.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You can't stay on this machine forever. It doesn't do what a kidney does.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is it. Unless somebody offers me a kidney or unless a cadaver becomes available, this is what keeps me alive.

ANDERSON: Those that turn to the black market can end up paying up to $200,000 for a transplant overseas, despite efforts by organizations like Interpol to crack down on those organize and performing the operations.

In Quezon province in the Philippines, organ sales are common amongst the male population. The documentary found many of them have no follow-up health care.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I don't regret it. I'm fine with it and at least I got to help another human being.

HERNAN, ORGAN BROKER (through translator): They come to us because they need money.

ANDERSON: But for others with undetected kidney disease and other illnesses, donating can be a death sentence.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Based on our ultrasound findings, the left kidney has a mild renal disease, and this is a sign of a deteriorating left kidney. There is really a problem. You will be a candidate for dialysis and he himself will be looking for a donor.

BIENSTOCK: I think we have to rethink our policies and really look at the root causes of why this is happening. I don't have an answer.

I pose more questions in the film than I answer, but I hope it kind of sparks debate, so that those thinkers who work in the field can actually come up with a viable solution so we eliminate all these needless deaths. And we're not going to stop kidney transplantation, so we've got to figure out how to meet the demands somehow.


ANDERSON: Well, facts and figures are hard to come by for what is largely an illegal trade. The World Health Organization estimates that in 2010, for example, there are about 107,000 organs donated worldwide, both legal and illegal.

Now, kidneys make up the majority of those, or about two thirds of all donated organs. Media reports consistently speak of up to $200 grand demanded for a single organ on the black market. It is important to point out, though, that the illegal traffickers in desperate need of cash receive only a fraction of that cash. Many are cheated out of any money at all.

Despite the shocking prices, demand far outstrips supply. The WHO says the organs meet just 10 percent of what's needed globally. That is largely due to the rising rates of diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart problems, as discussed in the documentary.

This is a tough one, isn't it? An illegal trade that saves lives, but also exploits the most vulnerable. We know people are willing to get paid for their organs, so is that the answer? A legal paid-for service?

Joining me now to discuss this is Janet Radcliffe-Richards, a professor at Oxford University, Nancy Scheper-Hughes, a professor at Berkeley University of California. Nancy, you say donations should be voluntary. Why?

NANCY SCHEPER-HUGHES, PROFESSOR, UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY: Well, I think we need to reframe this whole debate from what I've heard thus far. First of all, people do not pay $200,000 for an organ. They pay $200,000 for an illicit kidney transplant in a private or a public hospital elsewhere in the world.

Second, it's not necessarily saving lives. It's making their lives a lot less painful and alleviates the suffering of being on dialysis.

Third, the reason that people are traveling to buy an organ from someone they don't know --

ANDERSON: All right --

SCHEPER-HUGHES: -- under what circumstances those people are selling it is because they're not willing to find a friend or a person within the family or to pay someone they know.

ANDERSON: Janet, OK, let me --


SCHEPER-HUGHES: My argument is not about money.

ANDERSON: Yes, OK, all right. Let me stop you there, because we haven't got an awful lot of time tonight, and I want to get as much done as possible. Janet, Ric says that this -- calling this exploitation is a disservice. Is it?

JANET RADCLIFFE-RICHARDS, PROFESSOR, OXFORD UNIVERSITY: Yes. I mean, of course, there is bound to be exploitation when there's a black market. The only way to stop exploitation is to control it and to make sure that the people get what they're expecting.

Now, I'm not saying this is a nice idea, selling organs. I think it's a horrible one. But the fact is, you have desperate people on both sides. One way or another, they will get together, and if we could make it safe for both of them and make sure the donor got paid enough and was followed up, then it's hard to see what would be wrong.

ANDERSON: Legalize and regulate. Surely.


ANDERSON: How would you respond?

SCHEPER-HUGHES: Well, if we're going to -- if we're going to legalize rather than prohibit -- and by the way, there's very little prohibition and there's almost no prosecutions. We have roughly 10,000 kidneys sold in the black market over the last -- and year-for-year, over 25 years, in some cases, and we have seven prosecutions in the world and virtually no surgeons.

So, it's a very, very safe black market. So, I don't think we have to worry too much about too many people --


SCHEPER-HUGHES: -- going to jail for this.

ANDERSON: Nobody dies? Nobody dies as a result of an organ being taken away at dirty -- in a dirty environment?

RADCLIFFE-RICHARDS: We do have to worry about that.

SCHEPER-HUGHES: Oh, no, no. I'm not saying that. I'm just saying that there's not prosecutions. There's danger of people doing it, and yes, there are -- the buyers die --

ANDERSON: All right.

SCHEPER-HUGHES: -- and the kidney sellers die when they're doing it in a very bad -- and I agree with Janet, in a totally uncontrolled black market, it couldn't be worse. But the solution, it seems to me, has to be based on if we're going to regulate, then some things have to happen.


SCHEPER-HUGHES: Number one --

ANDERSON: Sorry, go on.

SCHEPER-HUGHES: This is not work like sex work, because it's non- reproducible. The only way you can reproduce this and make it into a -- it's a one-off.

RADCLIFFE-RICHARDS: It's a one-off, but --

SCHEPER-HUGHES: So, it's not a toe-hold into the immigration process. You get trafficked somewhere in the world, and they've got you out.

RADCLIFFE-RICHARDS: Nobody is suggesting that this is the solution. The problem comes from the other direction. We have some people who desperately need kidneys. We have other people who desperately need money.

They were -- as soon as it was discovered that they were meeting each other and exchanging, making this mutually beneficial exchange, the medical profession and the politicians rushed in to stop it.

Now, the question is, why they rushed in to stop it altogether rather than saying let's subject it to the regulations which govern ordinary giving of organs. We know that giving of organs can be safe because --


RADCLIFFE-RICHARDS: -- theses surgeons are recommending it all the time. The question is, why we have made it illegal thereby forcing the people who are desperate into a black market.

ANDERSON: Both of you, I thank you very much, indeed, for joining us tonight. We're going to have to take a very short break, but I'm going to get this piece online that we did and I'll get this discussion online and I want our viewers to continue this discussion across Facebook, our blog, and Twitter. Both of you, for the time being, thank you very much, indeed, for joining us.

Coming up after this short break on CONNECT THE WORLD, will it be a much-needed victory for Manchester United as they fight Olympiakos, the Greek team, to stay alive in the Champions League playoffs. We're going to do that story after this just before the top of the hour.


ANDERSON: The last 16 second-leg UEFA Champions League matches underway right now with Borussia Dortmund and Zenit St. Petersburg tied one-all at the top of the second half. Dortmund leading on aggregate in that game.

But it's the other match of the night that is grabbing all the attention, isn't it? Man United hosts Greek champions Olympiakos at home. Now, United's Van Persie has just completed a hat trick, which now means they are going to head into the next round if they manage not to concede a goal. Remember, they were two down going into this match.

Now, to some of you, the match underway at Old Trafford is merely a football match. Not for those of us who are huge fans of football, but for the thousands of Red Devils -- that's what Man United fans are called -- tonight's match is the final chance to salvage something out of what has been a dreadful season to date, and the chance to uphold some veneer of what's become, quite frankly, a tarnished brand. Isa Soares reports.


ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): From victory to misery all in eight months. It's been a dramatic fall from grace for Manchester United. Nine defeats in 29 league games this season alone. A poor performance when compared to the previous season.

The blame is being pointed squarely David Moyes, the former Everton manager who took over from Sir Alex Ferguson, and who now is fighting for his future at one of the world's biggest clubs.

MICHAEL JARMAN, HEAD OF EQUITY STRATEGY, H20 MARKETS: One season you could probably get away with it, but to consistently be losing and dropping out of 45 million pounds in terms of revenue lost from not participating in a competition? Yes, it will knock him out. A season out becomes two seasons out, two seasons out becomes three seasons out, and it's a snowball effect from there.

SOARES: His torrid start at the club hasn't convinced some fans he's a manager who can win trophies, with a growing chorus calling for his resignation on Twitter, and some even tattooing it to prove how strongly they feel. But Moyes is adamant he's the right person. All he needs is time to deliver.

DAVID MOYES, MANAGER, MANCHESTER UNITED: My future has not changed one bit. I've got a great job. I know exactly the direction I want to go in. It's not been the season we hoped we would have at this present time, but I've got ideas of what I want to do, what I'll put in place when the time's right.

SOARES: But time is exactly what he may not have, with games these days being played not just on the pitch, but also in stock markets. Manchester United's share price is currently down more than 11 percent since Moyes was appointed last May.

JARMAN: It was pitched as a growth stock. The problem is, you've signed your big lucrative deal now with Chevrolet, you've about to sign your big lucrative deal, hopefully, with a kit sponsor. Where's the next contract coming from?

And you've got to ask yourself, now: are earnings possibly stretched going forward? And if that's the case, I need the success to remain on the pitch in order to attract more deals to the table.

SOARES (on camera): While those on the table may suffice for now, they include deals with the likes of Aon, Nike, Chevrolet, and DHL, all helping to boost the club's value to $3 billion. And then, there's TV revenue. All-in-all, financial firepower that for now shows no sigh of diminishing.

Isa Soares, CNN, London.


ANDERSON: I'm Becky Anderson, and that was CONNECT THE WORLD, thank you for watching. From the team here in London and around the world, a very good evening.