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CNN NEWSROOM

Trump: Berlin Rampage an "Attack on Humanity"; Defense Prosecutors Trying to "Taint the Jury Pool"; Evacuations Continue Amid Snow, Subzero Temps; Queen delays Christmas Travel due to Illness; Manhunt for Berlin Suspect: $100,000+ Reward Offered. Aired 2:30-3p ET

Aired December 21, 2016 - 14:30   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[14:30:16]

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENTIAL-ELECT: -- That's what it is, it's an attack on humanity and it's got to be stopped. Thank you.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: OK, Ryan Lizza, maybe your hearing is better than mine. I asked for a transcript, OK? So, let me translate. He was essentially saying the attacks both in Turkey and in Germany were terrible. He said specifically the attack in Berlin was an attack on humanity. He said he had spoken within President Obama as recent as about two days ago. But what I wanted to highlight with you is, one of the reporters asked given what had happened overseas, has it caused you to rethink or re-evaluate your plans to create a Muslim registry or ban Muslim immigration to the United States? Trump's answer was, "You know my plans. All along, I've been proven to be right. 100 percent correct. What's happening is disgraceful. Anyway, nice to have you here." How do you interpret that answer?

RYAN LIZZA, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR AND WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT "THE NEW YORKER": You know, look, on the two most controversial and alarming things that he's talked about with respect to immigration, this registry and banning Muslims from entering the country. He hasn't -- the ban on Muslims is still on his web site and there's been a lot of conflicting reports from people around him and frankly, from him personally about whether he's committed to either of those things. The registry was a question that someone asked and it seemed like he was little caught off guard and he suggested that -- he would be OK with that which, granted, is worrying because it would probably be unconstitutional.

But if you notice there, he wasn't eager to talk about either even though he did say, "You know what my plans are." I don't think we fully know where he's going to end up on that. I do know that he's hearing from a lot of people, a lot of important Republicans who are not in favor in any way with a ban on Muslims. And I think we have to wait and see where he ends up on that. I think he's hearing from you know, people like Mattis and his new -- some of his new national security advisers who don't agree with him on these things. And you know he is persuadable. So, I interpret that as the jury is still out on both of those policies and I hope - myself, I hope he sees the light of day on those and realizes that's not the way to go and that frankly, it wouldn't work anyway.

BALDWIN: Alice, let me just ask you. I mean, the jury is still out. This is something that has concerned a lot of people in this country. When will he address it? Do you have any clue?

ALICE STEWART, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR AND REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: He clearly needs to outline more of his foreign policy specifics and he will do that in due time. He's still working to flesh out more people that will fill those roles. Look, with these latest attacks -- I was recently in Berlin and there was a lot of criticism of Angela Merkel with her open borders policy. There are a lot of people in that country that are against that. --

BALDWIN: Right.

STEWART: So, we still don't know all the details of what happened in Berlin. But this type of activity happening -- surrounding a time when Trump is putting together foreign policy. He will take some of this into consideration. And I think he will hold the line when it comes to his strong stance on immigration in light of these recent incidents because it is taking a backlash there in Germany.

BALDWIN: It could hurt Angela Merkel because of - that's exactly right, sort of her open arms policy because she agreed to stand as Chancellor, again. Before I let you go, sorry, I'm not - I just want to hear more from you on -- we should hear in the next 24 to 48 hours who Trump picks as his Press Secretary. Give me any indication it would be anyone other than Sean Spicer.

STEWART: I don't know who it will be but let's just say this. A lot of people have been working extremely hard on the campaign. Sean has done a tremendous job. He has all the --

BALDWIN: He's the RNC spokesperson.

STEWART: -- RNC spokesperson. He has all the relationships. He knows people that he'll be dealing with on a day to day basis. He knows Donald Trump. Donald Trump knows him and trusts him. So, he would -- in my view, be someone that would be at the top of the line but there are still a lot of -- Hope Hicks has done a tremendous job. There are lot of folks -- Jason miller. Kellyanne Conway is still in the mix. So there's a lot of good talent right there for a great position. It's just that we'll wait and see.

BALDWIN: OK. You may know. What I got from you is you may know but you're not saying it. All right, Alice, Ryan and Bakari, thank you all so much.

LIZZA: Thanks you.

BAKARI SELLERS, HILLARY CLINTON SUPPORTER: Thanks, Brooke.

BALDWIN: Coming up next, murder accusations, admissions of being high on meth, even an alleged confession. Right now real estate heir Robert Durst, here he is, he's back in court as new bombshell court documents surface that could have a massive impact on his case. We will be live in Los Angeles, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[14:37:43] BALDWIN: Robert Durst, the 73-year-old real estate heir, on trial for murdering his best friend to cover up another murder says he hasn't confessed to anything. What is more, he claims he was high on meth when he made that dramatic statement that sounded an awful like a confession during a taping for an HBO documentary. In that film, Durst was caught mumbling to himself off camera on a hot mike.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ROBERT DURST, REAL ESTATE HEIR: What the hell did I do?

Kill them all, of course.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: "Kill them all, of course." That statement came in the 2015 finale of "The Jinx" on HBO but newly-released court documents showed Durst had previously explained to investigators why he said those things.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DURST: The whole long weekend when I did the interviews for "The Jinx" I was on meth. The whole time I was on meth. And when I looked at the little pieces of it, I was going like this, and like that. And it was -- it should have been obvious. And I'm surprised my lawyer let me go ahead with it, because it just - I looked like there was something going on.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: Well, Durst was arrested the day before that final episode aired. And happening right now in a Los Angeles courtroom, a judge will decide on what evidence prosecutors can use in this case. So, with me now, Lisa Bloom, trial attorney with The Bloom Firm and legal analyst in Avvo and Mark Geragos, CNN legal analyst and defense attorney. Good to see both of you.

And Lisa, let me just ask you first. You know, Durst says, he maintains his innocence and we know prosecutors are trying to use this clip and this film but Durst now says it's privileged. Is it admissible or is it attorney/client privilege?

LISA BLOOM, TRIAL ATTORNEY THE BLOOM FIRM AND LEGAL ANALYST AVVO: Well, the tape of him saying "Kill them all, of course" is admissible. It's going to come in. Yes, his lawyers aren't just going to roll over and say, well, it's an admission, I guess we should all go home. They're going to say he was on drugs and it wasn't really an admission and the jury will have to make that determination. As to documents or communication that he may have had with his attorneys, those would be protected by the attorney/client privilege, unless he gave them to a third party like the film producer. That's considered to waive the privilege which is why I always tell

[14:40:16] my clients don't be giving things out to other people, let's keep them just between you and me.

BALDWIN: Mark Geragos, what do you think?

MARK GERAGOS, CNN LEGAL ANALYST AND DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, the stuff on the hot mike, the -- what the judge will end up ruling is even if he was under the influence of meth, even if he was on the influence of whatever else, it's what's called a declaration against penal interest or conceivably an admission and it goes to the weight that a jury will give it but not to its admissibility. So it's going to come in.

The other stuff is a little bit more problematic. As Lisa mentioned, if its communications or work product of the lawyers then arguably the presumption is it doesn't come in. Then it depends on how did the third party get it? Did he share it? Or did the cops just come in and seize it? If the cops came in and seized it, it probably won't come in and they'll have what's called a special master proceeding. They'll have somebody independent, go through, take a look at this stuff and they'll have to come up with what's called a privilege log and list all of the things and why it's attorney/client or work product.

BALDWIN: OK, so as it's up to the judge to determine what you all have just laid out. Lisa Bloom, just back up three steps, what's at stake here?

BLOOM: Well, what's at stake is whether Robert Durst will ever in fact be held accountable for any of the killings that he's done in his life. Look, we know for sure he killed one person, Morris Black in Texas, years ago. He went to trial, he was acquitted, the jury found that he did it in the self-defense even though he chopped up the poor man's body and threw it in Galveston Bay. But -- for decades he's been a suspect in the murder of his wife Kathleen and he's accused of having killed Susan Berman to shut her up because she was potentially a witness in the Kathleen murder. So, I mean, he's 73 years old, you can see he does appear to be in poor health. Will he ever be held accountable? That's what's really at stake here.

BALDWIN: How -- on his health, Mark Geragos, when he apparently had esophageal cancer a number of years ago, declining health, he said in a jailhouse interview, I think it was just about a year and a half ago, that he thinks he only has five more years to live. If you're a juror and you see this man in a wheelchair, do you have any sort of sympathy whatsoever?

GERAGOS: Well, it's certainly sitting there in the wheelchair looking frail and he probably is right. He probably doesn't have more than five or six years of life expectancy in any of it. That arguably is going to resonate potentially with some juror. I don't think it matters much with the judge. It's not going to have any impact on any judicial ruling. But, you know, arguably you get one or two jurors remember, in a criminal case that has to be a unanimous verdict and one or two jurors that hold out, that don't want to convict him, that could resonate with him. I could see where that would be some kind of sympathy.

BALDWIN: What would your defense be, Mark? How would you get him off?

GERAGOS: This case to me is an infinitely triable case. I think there's a reason Dick DeGuerin is out here in Los Angeles trying this case. I think he's going to win this case. They do not have an overwhelming -- this is not an overwhelming case, this is not a circumstantial case that's tightly focused or anything else. I think this case is a stretch for the prosecution. I don't give them a lot of -

BALDWIN: Despite that tape? Despite the hot mike?

GERAGOS: -- hope in terms of getting a conviction. -- The hot mike is "Killed them all." -- I literally don't know how much they're going to be able to use that with a jury and they don't -- even that, remember, a defendant's statements, a defendant's admissions, all of that stuff still may not be admissible if they can't prove what's called the corpus delicti.

BALDWIN: Go ahead, Lisa, last thought.

BLOOM: Listen. Yes, of course, people who are innocent of killing three people often say offhandedly, "Sure, I killed them all." I mean, come on let's get real. I think that's a very important statement. It made a big impact in the public -

(CROSSTALK)

GERAGOS: Lisa - But Lisa, the other two may not come in. --

BLOOM: -- and everybody heard it. One more point, you know, we haven't talked about one of the most important pieces of evidence which is the handwriting exemplar. We know Robert Durst's handwriting and we know a letter that he sent close in time to this murder, which is very significant. You know, that's less flashy than the "I killed them all" recording.

But listen, Mark is a terrific defense attorney, he's always going to pick apart the evidence one by one but the prosecution is going to put it all out there and the jury is going to take it all together. They may not think every piece of evidence is significant but there's certainly enough here to try Robert Durst for the killing of Susan Berman.

BALDWIN: We'll watch it. We'll see what happens. Lisa and Mark, thank you both. Thank you. Thank you.

BLOOM: Thank you.

BALDWIN: I know you want to keep arguing back and forth but we've got to go. Coming up here, we do now have a photo of the man who police believe is the one who is behind the wheel plowing through those crowds at that Christmas market in Berlin this week. The latest on this manhunt, who is he, straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[14:48:27] BALDWIN: From a war bunker to a presidential palace, Bana Alabed's Twitter updates captivated the world with her family's struggle to survive in East Aleppo. And today, after an evacuation from Syria to Turkey, the 7-year-old little girl and her family met with Turkish President Erdogan there in the capital and she even thanked him in English.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BANA ALABED, 7-YEAR-OLD SYRIAN GIRL: Thank you for supporting the children of Aleppo and help us to get out from war. I love you.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: How about that? 7. While she is safe, evacuations are winding down and have met with many delays amid falling snow, subzero temperatures. More than 37,000 people have been evacuated so far. With me now, a Syrian and American writer Lina Sergie Attar, she is a co- founder and CEO of Karam Foundation, a nonprofit credited with helping thousands of the youngest victims of the Syrian Civil War. Lina, nice to have you on.

LINA SERGIE ATTAR, SYRIAN-AMERICAN WRITER FROM ALEPPO AND CO-FOUNDER AND CEO OF KARAM FOUNDATION: Thank you for having me.

BALDWIN: You are from Aleppo. You have dispatched a number of members from your team to Syria. What are they doing to help?

ATTAR: We have an active team on the ground in Idlib, Northern Syria and in the Aleppo country side where the evacuations are taking place along with many other organizations on the ground. Working really around the clock to provide these families who have suffered so much with the basic necessities, shelter, winter aid supplies, food, and just trying to get them what they need, medical attention, so that they could actually start settling into their new lives as displaced people.

[14:50:16] BALDWIN: There are so many layers of challenges. I mentioned it is pouring snow, it's freezing, freezing cold there as they're all working to get out. We see the pictures. -- What is the biggest challenge your team is facing?

ATTAR: The biggest challenge is that we're facing right now, is really the weather conditions and the fact that evacuations were taking so long and people were arriving on buses that they had been spending hours and hours on buses stuck in the middle between their homes and the places where they were being displaced to. And so, this uncertainty of where the people were, if they were going to be safe and where they were going to be evacuated to has created really a catastrophic humanitarian crisis for the organizations that are working to deliver aid to the families.

But in general, we have had families being displaced into specific towns and villages, people are taking shelter in schools, in homes, and there are also IDP camps that are now currently under construction. Camps that are under construction specifically for the people that are being evacuated from Aleppo - and really, these are not evacuations, this is an eviction. It's a forced displacement of an entire community of tens of thousands of people who are besieged for over three months, who have been living under bombs, who also were evicted from their home, left on the streets for a few days last week until the actual buses arrived and start taking people out and then left really with nothing but the clothes on their backs to be able to start their own lives from scratch.

BALDWIN: I know this is such a different Aleppo that I'm sure you knew and loved when you left in the late '90s. And I think you said it so perfectly, this is not an evacuation. It's an eviction. Lina Sergie Attar, co-founder and CEO of Karam Foundation, thank you for your time today and thank you so much for all your work.

ATTAR: Thank you.

BALDWIN: Thank you. Coming up, is Queen Elizabeth OK? The Queen, changing their Christmas plans after catching a horrible cold. What we just learned from Buckingham Palace. Richard Quest is next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[14:55:47] BALDWIN: We've all been there. Christmas is just a couple days away. You might get hit with a monster cold, end-of-the-year exhaustion. You get it. Such is the case, apparently, in Buckingham Palace where officials say Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip have "heavy colds" and will not be heading out to the traditional country retreat - Sandringham House.

RICHARD QUEST, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Sandringham.

BALDWIN: Sandringham. For you and I, this might mean a couple days of chicken soup and Netflix. The Queen is 90 and her husband is 95. And at that age, even a mild cold could spell danger. Richard Quest who used to cover the Queen and the Royals in London -- the Royals -

QUEST: The Royals - OK, so, her majesty always goes to Sandringham. It was bought by her father. She always goes to Sandringham -- Christmas and she stays there to February. It's a big country estate. It's a big pile of a mansion of a house. It's in Norfolk in eastern England.

BALDWIN: So it's kind of a big deal that she's not going.

QUEST: Very much so. Because when she's at Sandringham, she will also go to Christmas morning services at the local parish church. And everybody will see who's there, which member of the family --

BALDWIN: She takes the train, her own carriage?

QUEST: No, no, no. BALDWIN: I thought she gets her own carriage on the train.

QUEST: No, that's the royal train but she doesn't take the royal train to Sandringham. Her majesty in recent years has taken a normal train from King's Cross Station to Kingsley.

BALDWIN: Is that not what I just said? She takes the train.

QUEST: A normal train.

BALDWIN: Right, that's what I meant, she's with the people.

QUEST: Well, yes, sort of. She goes first class. -- And it's quite a spectacular thing because she turns up at the station. She gets on the train. -

BALDWIN: Amazing.

QUEST: She buys a ticket. But she won't be going this year. And the serious point about that is you know, she is 90 and Philip is 95. And as you rightly point out, I mean, although they enjoy excellent health, any form of heavy cold which could turn into something more serious is of great concern when you get to that age.

BALDWIN: So, what does she do instead for the holiday?

QUEST: So, she's going to be staying in London at the palace and they will decide tomorrow or even Friday, whether they're going to go to Sandringham. They've already had the family Christmas lunch earlier in the week but now, because Sandringham is a chance for the close family to come together, to have a real Christmas family occasion. And the decision will be whether or not she goes later in the week.

BALDWIN: 90 years of age.

QUEST: 90 years. And she will of course -- she will address the British people and the commonwealth on Christmas Day. That's already been recorded and that Christmas message is one of the great traditions in British --

BALDWIN: Before I let you go, have you ever met the Queen?

QUEST: Yes.

BALDWIN: What was that like?

QUEST: I met Her Majesty --

BALDWIN: Did you - what is it, bow?

QUEST: I met Her Majesty when she opened CNN's New London Bureau Broadcasting Center. -- You shake hands and she shakes your hand.

BALDWIN: But don't you -

QUEST: And it's a short sharp bow. BALDWIN: I haven't met the Queen. I'm just taking notes.

QUEST: It's a short sharp bow from the neck. It's not a Japanese - It's a straightforward - And it's ma'am like Spam, not mom like farm.

BALDWIN: Ma'am?

QUEST: Yes, ma'am.

BALDWIN: All right.

QUEST: First reference Your Majesty, second reference ma'am.

BALDWIN: Thank you, sir. I knew you'd be excellent. Thank you for rolling through.

QUEST: Lord will do.

BALDWIN: Lord. Lord Quest, thank you. Now to this.

OK, moving on. Your top of the hour, you are watching CNN, I'm Brooke Baldwin. Right now, this urgent manhunt is underway for the person. Right here on your screen, this is 24-year-old Anis Amri, a Tunisian asylum seeker and the suspected terrorist who police believe took a truck, plowed this truck into a crowded Christmas market in Berlin this week. He is considered armed and extremely dangerous.

What we can tell you is that he has been known to authorities who say he has direct ties to an ISIS recruiting network in Germany. Source are also now telling CNN that German security services considered him a threat and that he was actually arrested back in August when he was caught trying to cross illegally into Italy, so he was arrested. But ultimately, a judge let him go.

President-elect Donald Trump, speaking just a short time ago, calling the attack there in Berlin, "An attack on humanity" and saying, it's only proved that tightening of Muslim immigration is --