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2 Bodies Recovered, Investigation Continues Into Bridge Collapse In Baltimore; Gaza Ceasefire Talks Allegedly Stuck But Ongoing; South Africa Struggles With Rampant Crime, Police Corruption; Obama Jumps In To Help Biden Defeat Trump Again; Judge Recommends Disbarment Of Ex-Trump Election Lawyer; ; White House Marks Anniversary of Gershkovich's Arrest; Working with Sharks and Turtles in the Bahamas; New Details on Federal Investigation into Sean "Diddy" Combs; Draft Bill in Germany May Ban Dachshund Breeding. Aired 1-2a ET

Aired March 28, 2024 - 01:00   ET




JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: Coming up on CNN Newsroom.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The collapse of the key bridge is a global crisis.


VAUSE: Counting the costs after the deadly collapse of Baltimore's Key Bridge as investigations continue into how it's brought down after being rammed by a cargo ship.


BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: Victory is within reach. It's a few weeks away.


VAUSE: But exactly what does victory look like? And what are Israel's plans for a post-Hamas Gaza?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We hit a direction north Mead Square. Direction North Mead Square.


VAUSE: With South Africa's 30 long crime wave getting worse and with police corruption at an all time high, private security guards are now the thin blue line. But for how long?

ANNOUNCER: Live from Atlanta. This is CNN Newsroom with John Vause.

VAUSE: In Baltimore, Maryland as investigations continue into the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge, what was a recovery mission is now a salvage operation. Two bodies were recovered from the water Wednesday. Four others remain missing, presumed dead.

Police say no one could survive this length of time in the frigid waters of the Patapsco River. Bad weather and the mangled wreckage of the bridge have also made conditions too dangerous for divers to continue their search.

But investigations into how this happened continue. Authorities have interviewed the ship's crew now have the voyage data recorder. The Dali was carrying 56 containers of hazardous material. Some were breached in the collision, while others fell into the harbor. As for the 46-year old bridge, officials say an inspection last May found no problems.


JENNIFER HOMENDY, U.S. NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD CHAIR: It's pretty devastating, certainly seeing not just what's going on with the cargo containers, but just looking at what was a bridge span, three bridge spans, that is pretty much gone. That is -- it's just utter devastation.


VAUSE: More details now on the crash, the investigation and the economic impact from CNN's Brian Todd.


GOV. WES MOORE (D-MD): The collapse of the Key Bridge is not just a Maryland crisis. The collapse of the Key Bridge is a global crisis.

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Divers located the bodies of two construction workers in a red pickup truck 25ft below the surface of Baltimore's Patapsco River a day after the Francis Scott key bridge collapsed, killing six. Authorities say it is currently impossible to locate the remaining four people.

COL. RONALD L. BUTLER JR., MARYLAND STATE POLICE SUPERINDENDENT: We're now moving from a recovery mode to a salvage operation. Because of the superstructure surrounding what we believe are the vehicles and the amount of concrete and debris, divers are no longer able to safely navigate or operate around that we have exhausted all search efforts.

TODD (voice-over): Investigators say they're going to examine a play by play breakdown of the moments before the fully loaded cargo ship rammed into the bridge a key piece of evidence, the ship's data recorder.

HOMENDY: We've sent that back to our lab to evaluate and begin to develop a timeline of events that led up to the strike on the bridge. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg doesn't expect the investigation will change the designs of bridges or ships moving forward.

PETE BUTTIGIEG, U.S. TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY: A bridge like this one, completed in the 1970s was simply not made to withstand a direct impact on a critical support pier from a vessel that weighs about 200 million pounds.

TODD (voice-over): But Homendy says the investigation will look at what could have kept the bridge from coming down.

HOMENDY: We will look at areas that should have been in place to prevent this type of destruction from occurring.

TODD (voice-over): At this moment.

SEN. CHRIS VAN HOLLEN (D-MD): The most urgent priority is to open up the port of Baltimore. It is essential to the livelihoods of people here in Baltimore and Maryland, and, in fact, the economies of the region and will impact people around the country and around the world.

TODD (voice-over): And plans are in the works for a new bridge.

PAUL WIEDEFELD, MARYLAND TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY: We will come up with a design for the replacement of that bridge as quickly as possible to get the back up and the community back up and running.

TODD (voice-over): Buttigieg says cleanup crews are working to clear out the hundreds of millions of tons of wreckage so shipping can resume and the bridge can be rebuilt.

BUTTIGIEG: We know that it can't happen overnight, and so we're going to have to manage the impacts in the meantime.

TODD: Federal officials now say there are eleven ships in addition to the Dali that are now stuck inside the port of Baltimore. They include three bulk carriers, an oil and chemical tanker, and a vehicle carrier.


Officials have also said that all crew members of the Dali are still on the container ship and are cooperating with investigators. Brian Todd, CNN, Baltimore.


VAUSE: Joining me now from Alaska, cargo ship Captain James Staples. He's also a maritime safety and security consultant. Jim, thank you for being with us.


VAUSE: So, in the last update we heard from the NTSB, I was told this came from the lead investigator. Precise details about the ship's speed, the power outage and point of impact. Listen to this.


MARCEL MUISE, NTSB INVESTIGATOR IN CHARGE: Around 0129, the ship's speed over ground was recorded at just under seven knots, or 8 miles per hour. From this moment until approximately 129 and 33 seconds, the VDR audio recorded sounds consistent with the collision of the bridge. Additionally, around this time, MDTA dash cameras show the bridge lights extinguishing.


VAUSE: It seems to take. In other words, it took, what, 33 seconds from that initial impact before the bridge actually began to collapse. So if you're the captain of that ship at that point, is there anything you could do and what would you have been able to do leading up to that moment?

STAPLES: Well, you know, once you lost the propulsion, there's probably not much they could do at that speed. The pilot did everything he possibly could do. He let that anchor go. He let that port anchor go and he was trying to steer the vessel away. But with all that momentum, all that weight, it wasn't a lot that he could do.

What would you have done prior to that? Well, that's easy to say with hindsight. Obviously, if they had probably two track to tugs on either end and a set of lead aft track to tug, that probably would have helped them quite a bit. And they could have missed the bridge.

So these are something we're going to have to look at, new procedures to be put into place for vessels being guided, like we do with tankers using escort tugs when they're going through a critical, well, a critical point in the harbor. So that's one thing that could be done. But like I said, that's all hindsight.

VAUSE: Yes, hindsight's a wonderful thing. Absolutely. 2020.


VAUSE: Clear the power outage and the cause of that is one of the focuses here of the investigation. What will they learn from the VDR about that the voice data recorder?

STAPLES: Well, they're going to get a lot of data from the different systems that are being run. So they're going to get all the radar pictures, they're going to get the telegraph where the engine was at, they're going to get the wheel. They're going to get every piece of electronic equipment that was being inputted into the VDR along with voice. They're also going to be picking up stuff from the engine room, so that may let them know that they've lost pressure in a certain pump or filters, got clogged or some type of problem, problem like that with oil, with the fuel system.

So that's what they're going to be looking at. You know, was this a fuel system problem? Was this human error? It still could be human error. We never know. Someone doing something as simple as turning and closing the wrong valve can cause a blackout of a ship. I've had that happen myself. Somebody turned in a wrong valve, blacked out a ship, something so simple. But that's what it was. And this happened a very crucial time.

VAUSE: I want you to listen to the governor of Maryland on the economic impact from the collapse of this bridge. Here he is.


MOORE: The national economy and the world's economy depends on the port of Baltimore. The port handles more cars and more farm equipment than any other port in the country. Last year alone, the port handled $80 billion of foreign cargo, the largest in the country.


VAUSE: On the U.S. east coast, there's the port of New York and New Jersey, Virginia, Savannah and Charleston, just to name a few. Do they have capacity to handle imports which would normally go to the port of Baltimore? Because it seems what we're looking at here means sort of more of a logistics problem as opposed to a supply chain issue. How do you see this?

STAPLES: Well, especially with the vehicles, I could personally talk about that because I've had hundreds of trips in and out of Baltimore running automobiles into there. And what you need for the automobiles is a space to put those vehicles until they can be picked up by transport trucks.

So does New York have that kind of space? I don't believe that they do that. They have quite a few ships going in there now dropping off automobiles. So that's going to be a big problem is the space for just vehicles alone, farm equipment and other type of roll on, roll off equipment.

So, yes, there's going to be a problem with space. That's usually what it is. It's always the land space that's the big problem.

VAUSE: Captain Jim Staples. Thank you, sir, for being with us. Your insights and your experience very much appreciate it.

STAPLES: Thank you.

VAUSE: Hostage and ceasefire negotiations between Israel and Hamas are stuck, but ongoing. That assessment from a number of sources comes a day after Hamas rejected a proposal put forward by CIA director Bill Burns.


Burns travelled to Doha late last week and met with Israeli, Egyptian and Qatari negotiators. While there was no breakthrough, U.S. officials say progress was made. CNN's Melissa Bell following developments, has more now reporting in from Jerusalem.


MELISSA BELL, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: There is cautious optimism being expressed by Israeli and American officials about the possibility that the talks on a hostage release deal might resume. The proposals between the parties continue to go back and forth.

We hear this after the disappointment of Tuesday morning when Israeli, the Israeli delegation had left Qatar over Hamas rejection of the latest version of the deal, a proposal put forward by the United States so called bridging deal that sought to bring the parties together and that had seemed to make such progress on the key question, for instance, of the ratio of Palestinian prisoners to be released for Israeli homes hostages.

The other sticking points, far more problematic, things like the return to the north of Gazans who've been forced to flee to the south, the positioning of Israeli soldiers in the Gaza Strip and the question of Hamas insistence that the end of the war be discussed as part of the deal.

All of these maximalist demands on the part of Hamas had appeared to kill the deal. But officials pointing out that part of the problem is that the delegation on Hamas part is having to wait for the answers to come back from Hamas leader in the Gaza Strip each time. Yahya Sinwar, from deep inside the tunnels underneath the Gaza Strip itself.

Still far from being dead, it seems that the talks have been paused, not a stalemate, we're told, more of a pause with hope they might come back. We've been hearing also from the State Department spokesman explaining that it is because it is the hardest sticking points that are now being discussed, that things are going more slowly, but there is hope that progress might be made with those proposals going back and forth. And of course, with that hope, the hope of the ceasefire that the deal would bring. Melissa Bell, CNN, Jerusalem.


VAUSE: With Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claiming victory in Gaza is just a few weeks away. Last hour, Yaakov Katz, senior columnist at the Jerusalem Post and senior fellow with the Jewish People Policy Institute, what that might actually look like.


YAAKOV KATZ, SENIOR COLUMNIST, THE JERUSALEM POST: I think that what the prime minister is referring to is that if Israel does go and launch that ground offensive into Rafah, which has really been at the heart of the controversy and the arguments that have been going on between Washington and Jerusalem of exactly how to prosecute that offensive, which is really the last, I would say, kind of the Alamo almost for Hamas.

It's where four Hamas battalions are still in their full entirety and strength held up in Rafah. It's where Hamas still has a series of tunnels along the border between Gaza and Egypt, which is its oxygen pipeline. It's where it can use those tunnels to smuggle in some of those more sophisticated Iranian weapons that we've seen them use during the last almost six months of this war. And the idea is that if Israel can go in there and break the back of

those battalions, take out those key tunnels. It won't have won the war in the sense that Hamas is eliminated, but it will have won the war in the sense of transitioning and moving Hamas from being this terrorist army to maybe lower level, counter terror insurgency style operations that then Israel will have to carry out over a period of time, but at a much lower level of intensity.

VAUSE: Sort of a downgrade version -- downgraded version of victory. Netanyahu made clear why that offensive on Rafah was so important. Here he is.

NETANYAHU: Now we are told, you can't do this if you go into Rafah, you're going to have a humanitarian catastrophe. You're going to have, I don't know, 30,000 deaths, 30,000 civilian deaths. OK. That's not true. That is simply not true. There's all of the Gaza Strip north of Rafah. You know, people move down, they can move, back up.

VAUSE: Anyone who makes that journey north is essentially risking their lives. And Netanyahu knows that. He also knows 30,000 people, mostly civilians, are already dead and most of Gaza's population crammed into Rafah. No one knows how many will die. And yet maybe it could be 30,000, but how many could it be?

What's an acceptable number here? Is it 5000? Is it 10,000? This is a question from Benjamin Netanyahu. How many people is he prepared to die in this military offensive.

KATZ: John?, I mean, you know, like I do. War is cruel and sadly, and it's terrible, and everybody wants to avoid it. And the Hamas attacks against Israel is what pushed and compelled Israel to have to go into Gaza to defend itself.

Now, with that said, it's not a question of what's the right number and what number is tolerable or acceptable. It's a question of what does Israel need to do to ensure for its own security the Hamas does not again rise up for the security and stability of the entire Middle East, that Hamas does not survive and continue to rule the Gaza Strip.


And just like Israel was able in the beginning of this war to move the Palestinians who were in the northern part of the Gaza down to the southern part of the Gaza, Israel, before entering in a large way into Rafah, will have to give ample time for the Palestinians displaced ones who were there to move out of there.


VAUSE: Thanks to Yaakov Katz, Senior Columnist at the Jerusalem Post.

As violence continues to surge across Haiti, France has airlifted more than 170 French nationals and 70 others from various countries. They were flown by a military helicopter to a naval vessel, then taken to the French territory of Martinique. Haiti's Transitional Presidential Council says progress is being made

towards appointing a new prime minister, who they say is expected to bring democratic legitimacy, stability and dignity back to Haiti.

Prime Minister Ariel Henry announced his resignation earlier this month as criminal gains coordinated attacks against police and government buildings and took over most of the capital, Port-au- Prince.

For most of the 30 post-apartheid years, South Africa has struggled with a crime wave it has been unable to control. Violent, brazen attacks and robberies, which should be handled by police, are instead turned over to private security patrols because police corruption is rampant as well. CNN's David McKenzie has more now on the private security guards risking their lives what seems to be a wave of lawlessness gripping the country.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lima Charlie six three.

ANTON KOEN, CEO, NOJACK: This was a vehicle that was triggered by the license plate recognition system. We need to be on top of the vehicle as soon as we or as fast as we possibly can.

DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: So Anton is chasing a hijacked vehicle. This happens all the time in South Africa. They're in touch with private security groups throughout this eastern part of Johannesburg. And one thing you don't hear anything about is the police.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right, we headed direction north Mead Square. Direction North Mead Square.

MCKENZIE (voice-over): Police can't cope. Underfunded and struggling with corruption.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They're shooting, they're shooting.

MCKENZIE (voice-over): Dashcam footage shows the criminal gangs private security are often up against. In South Africa, more than 20,000 vehicles were hijacked last year. Murders are at a 20 year high.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right side, Michael. Get down. Get down.

MCKENZIE (voice-over): Cash and transit heists are now commonplace. Armored vehicles targeted in broad daylight by heavily armed gangs. This heist on a major Jo'burg highway in October.

MCKENZIE: Was it difficult to get a gun?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, it's not difficult.

MCKENZIE (voice-over): We met a cash in transit criminal who claims he's gotten out of the game. We agreed to hide his identity so he would talk freely.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People who are angry with the level of crime, they will never sleep with their stomach empty. Those are the people crying with crime.

MCKENZIE (voice-over): He says around a dozen gang members target the vehicles, often with insider intelligence. They have spotters, drivers and shooters, splitting the cash evenly.

MCKENZIE: Did you ever kill anyone?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. I know it's bad. I feel bad about it. Some of them, you go, and you want to rob and they do not surrender. They want to become heroes.

MCKENZIE: But father of four TT Ngwenya says he never wanted to be a hero. He just wanted to put food on the table.

TT NGWENYA, FORMER CAHS-IN-TRANSIT DRIVER: I needed the money. You must take out that you are going to be killed because you will never work for your children.

MCKENIZE (voice-over): He always knew they would be hit. And in May 2021, they were. The dashcam video shows the gang working quickly, efficiently, even. They made Ngwenya and the other guards lie in the grass. When they blew off the roof, it crushed his legs.

NGWENYA: The big thing to me, I'm no longer able to stand. I'm no longer working as the way I was before I joined that job. And I always feel pain. I'm short with some pills, you see, and I'm a father.

KOEN: It seems like the value of life actually means nothing to a lot of people anymore. I think at the moment our crime is out of control. Our crime is really not in control. We are having a hard time fighting crime.

MCKENIZE (voice-over): South Africa is losing the war against crime, the promise of its democracy hijacked by corruption, desperation and grief. David Mackenzie, CNN, Johannesburg.


VAUSE: Well, he's back. Former U.S. President Barack Obama once again helping his former running mate Joe Biden and his struggling campaign for a second term.


But does this mean the Democrats have hit the panic button? More on that in a moment.

Also, a somber anniversary for a Wall Street Journal reporter arrested in Russia. A somber message from the White House almost a year after he was detained.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) VAUSE: Former U.S. senator Joe Lieberman, the first Jewish vice presidential nominee of a major party, died Wednesday, aged 82. According to his family cause of death was complications after a recent fall. For most of his political career, Lieberman was very much a mainstream Democrat chosen by democratic presidential nominee Al Gore to be his running mate in what would be the controversial election of 2000.

But Lieberman, after the 9/11 terror attacks was often out of step with his party, taking a more hardline stance on foreign policy and the war in Iraq. Al Gore says he's forever grateful for Lieberman's tireless efforts to build a better future for America. Former president George W. Bush released a statement saying, Joe was as fine an American as they come. One of the most decent people I met during my time in Washington. Joe Lieberman will be buried Friday in his hometown of Stanford, Connecticut.

The U.S. President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump running neck and neck in the polls. But when it comes to money, Biden is certainly outpacing Trump. And on Thursday, that gap expected to widen even further.

Biden holds his largest 2024 fundraising event, and attending will be former presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton in New York. In this deja vu election season, Obama, a powerful campaigner, is crucial for President Biden in his November face off against Donald Trump. CNN's MJ Lee takes a look at how Obama is once again coming to rescue Joe Biden.



MJ LEE, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Barack Obama jumping into the 2024 election hoping he can help his former vice president Joe Biden win a second term at the White House.

The former president making clear to associates in recent months that he believes the Biden-Donald Trump rematch in November will be incredibly close and that he sees the election as an all hands on deck moment, sources tell CNN.

OBAMA: As you know, Joe is an extraordinary friend and partner. He was by my side for eight years.

LEE (voice-over): Last Friday, Obama spending several hours in the White House residence recording videos for the Biden campaign, including about the Affordable Care Act.

OBAMA: There's nothing I'm more proud of than the ACA.

LEE (voice-over): Off camera, Obama telling Biden that the president's State of the Union remarks this month appear to have broken through and that he believes health care will once again be a potent issue in the upcoming election. Passage of that landmark health care law, one of the hallmark

achievements of the Obama presidency. That 14 years later, President Biden is continuing tout.

JOE BIDEN, U.S. PRESIDENT: I thought it was a big deal at the time. Well, it's even a bigger deal today.


LEE (voice-over): Sources telling CNN that the two presidents who have made much of their friendship and so called bromance still speak regularly.

OBAMA: This also gives the Internet one last chance to talk about our bromance.

LEE (voice-over): And that Obama is also in direct contact with some senior White House officials, including chief of staff Jeff Zients. On Thursday, three U.S. presidents Biden, Obama and Bill Clinton, set to appear together for a star studded fundraiser in New York City, moderated by comedian Stephen Colbert.

Tickets to be sold out evening at Radio City Music Hall ranging from $225 to a whopping half a million dollars, and numerous celebrities expected to be in attendance. Some audience members also getting the chance to have their photo taken with the three presidents by famed photographers Annie Leibovitz.


VAUSE: People say Democrats are out of touch. Thanks to MJ Lee for that report. Donald Trump is officially back on the ballot in the state of Illinois. A panel of judges Wednesday reversed a previous decision disqualifying Trump from Illinois primary ballot under the insurrectionist ban of the 14th Amendment of the Constitution. It comes weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled states cannot enforce that ban on federal candidates. Trump easily won last week's Illinois primary anyway after his rivals dropped out.

Some of the lawyers who assisted Trump in his efforts to overturn the 2020 U.S. presidential election are now dealing with the consequences.

A California judge is recommending that former Trump lawyer John Eastman be disbarred for his role in Trumps efforts to remain in power. Eastman can appeal the ruling in the California Supreme Court will review the case. But as CNN's Jessica Schneider reports, this marks a moment of reckoning for those who peddled false theories of election fraud.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you still think the election was stolen?


JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): John Eastman and Jeffrey Clark are still defiant.

JEFFREY CLARK, FORMER U.S. ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL: They've tried to destroy me, but I'm still standing. And I'm going to keep fighting.

SCHNEIDER (voice-over): More than three years after they allegedly worked with then-President Trump to try to overturn the 2020 election.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you regret attaching your name to the former president?

EASTMAN: None whatsoever.

SCHNEIDER (voice-over): John Eastman operated as the so called Architect behind the fake elector scheme, and Jeffrey Clark instigated an intense pressure campaign inside the Justice Department to try to get DOJ officials to help overturn the election for Trump.

Now, both men are facing professional reckonings. Eastman and Clark have been sitting through attorney disciplinary hearings in recent weeks and months that could ultimately result in them losing their law licenses

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A criminal conspiracy.

SCHNEIDER (voice-over): They are also both defendants charged in the Georgia election subversion case.

EASTMAN: I'm here today to surrender to an indictment that should never have been brought. It targets attorneys for their zealous advocacy on behalf of their clients, something attorneys are ethically bound to provide and which was attempted here by formally challenging the results of the election through lawful and appropriate means.

SCHNEIDER (voice-over): While Eastman has been fighting those criminal charges, his attorney disciplinary case has been unfolding in California. He's charged by the state bar with eleven counts related to his plot to obstruct the electoral counting process.

CLARK: They're trying to take my bar license.

SCHNEIDER (voice-over): Jeffrey Clark's professional ethics trial started this week in Washington, DC. Richard Donohue, who was then deputy attorney general while Clark served as head of the civil division, testified Tuesday to the disciplinary committee that Clark's theories of election fraud were not supported by evidence and that Clark was repeatedly told there was no proof of tampering.

RICHARD DONOGHUE, FORMER ACTING U.S. DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL: I said, this is nothing less than Justice Department meddling in an election. His reaction was, I think a lot of people have meddled in this election.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: America's mayor Rudy Giuliani, accompanied by Professor John Eastman.

SCHNEIDER (voice-over): John Eastman was closely aligned with Rudy Giuliani, who is also facing possible disbarments for his role during the 2020 election.

RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER TRUMP ATTORNEY: Let's have trial by combat.

SCHNEIDER (voice-over): There are just a few of the handful of Trump lawyers who have faced severe consequences for their roles working to overturn the 2020 election. Sidney Powell, Jenna Ellis and Kenneth Chesebro have all pleaded guilty in the Georgia case. Eastman and Clark have pleaded not guilty.

SCHNEIDER: And a California judge late Wednesday night recommended that John Eastman be disbarred, ordering that Eastman's law license be suspended in three days, also ordering him to pay $10,000. It's now up to the California Supreme Court to decide whether to endorse or reject that disbarment recommendation. This is a significant step, though, nonetheless, that it's even been recommended after this lengthy 34 day fact finding trial. Jessica Schneider, CNN, Washington.


VAUSE: We'll pause here and take a moment, but when we come back, remembering the victims of the Baltimore bridge collapse. Hard working men doing a tough job to provide for their families when disaster struck. Their stories in a moment.



VAUSE: Welcome back. I'm John Vause. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM.

Federal authorities now have about six hours of voyage data from the Dali, the cargo ship which crashed into the Francis Scott Key Bridge early Tuesday. They say the investigation could take up to two years to find out exactly what happened. Officials have yet to provide a timeline for replacing the bridge and reopening the port.

Meantime, recovery efforts have been hampered by bad weather and dangerous conditions underwater. Four construction workers remain missing, presumed dead. The bodies of two others were recovered Wednesday.


COL. ROLAND L. BUTLER, JR., MARYLAND STATE POLICE SUPERINTENDENT: Shortly before 10:00 a.m. Divers located a red pickup truck submerged in approximately 25 feet of water in the area of the middle span of the bridge. Divers recovered two victims of this tragedy trapped within the vehicle.


VAUSE: The grief, sadness, and loss from this bridge collapse goes way beyond borders. The six victims were immigrants from El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico. They're being remembered as hardworking husbands, fathers and sons.

CNN's Gustavo Valdes has our report.


GUSTAVO VALDES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Maynor Suazo Sandoval is remembered by friends and family as a visionary, a man who dreamed big.

He said that if we wanted to get ahead as a family, we must work three times harder together, said his brother Martin who still lives in the small village in northern Honduras where they grew up.

He was the youngest of eight children and almost 20 years ago, left Honduras for the United States, looking for a better future. And his hard work paid off.

His brother proudly says that Maynor managed to build a successful construction business that allowed him to send money home, improve the family house where his parents still live and open a couple of businesses, including a hotel.

He also financed local soccer leagues.

"He believed that helping children have a better life would improve the chances of a better Honduras," his brother says. But his business suffered during the pandemic.

He was among the group of workers doing repair work on the Francis Scott Key Bridge that collapsed when a cargo ship hit one of its pillars.

The news of the tragedy was a blow to the family who struggled to break the news to Maynor's mother.


VALDES: Martin says that she wanted to fly to the United States as soon as possible. But now she only wants for the body of her youngest son to be found so they can bury him in his native land.

All victims were migrants from Latin America. The governments of Mexico and Guatemala have said that they are already assisting the relatives in their countries and in the United States.

In El Salvador, relatives of Miguel Luna can't hold back tears for the father of six children, who was also working on the bridge when it collapsed.

"We knew him as a humanitarian person," says his cousin Angela Luna. Luna left El Salvador shortly after finishing his basic education. He had lived in the United States for 19 years, working to provide for his family in Maryland and relatives in El Salvador.

"He always wanted to see his children grow up, to provide them with a better education," she says. And now all they can do is hope that his body is found.

Gustavo Valdes, CNN -- Atlanta. (END VIDEOTAPE)

VAUSE: With cross-border attacks between Israel and Hezbollah militants in Lebanon escalating. Israel has warned it will copy and paste Gaza onto Lebanon, the blunt words from the Israeli prime minister's office comes on the same day when at least 16 people were killed in Israeli airstrikes on villages in southern Lebanon. The Israeli military says they were targeting terrorists cells.

Hezbollah says in response it fired dozens of rockets into northern Israel. Most of the Hezbollah rockets were intercepted, but Israeli official say at least one person was killed.

The death from last week's concert hall attack near Moscow has risen to 143. And Russian authorities also say 143 people remain missing.

CNN has reached out to Russian officials to verify if those two lists overlap in some way. Some have now taken to social media in recent days asking for help to find missing friends and relatives. The gunmen went on a shooting spree ahead of a rock concert Friday before setting the venue on fire, causing the roof to collapse.

"Wall Street Journal" reporter Evan Gershkovich has been behind bars in Russia for almost a full year now. He was arrested for alleged espionage on March 29th last year while reporting from Russia.

Both he and "The Journal" strongly deny any wrongdoing. U.S. considers him wrongfully detained. On Wednesday, the White House marked the upcoming anniversary by saying it's not giving up on finding his -- on trying to have him released from that prison.


KARINE JEAN PIERRE, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: This administration will continue working every day to secure his release. We will continue to push back against Russia's attempts to use Americans as bargaining chips. And we will continue to stand strong against all those who seek to attack the press or target journalists.

To Evan, to Paul Whelan, and to all Americans held hostage or wrongfully detained abroad, keep the faith. We are with you, and we won't stop working to bring you home.


VAUSE: That statement came just a day after Gershkovich's pretrial detention was extended until June 30. He faces up to 20 years if convicted.

The U.S. state of Texas is boosting its security presence near the border, near El Paso. About 200 tactical border force troops have arrived in the city on board two C-130 transport planes. governor Greg Abbott ordered their deployment last may as part of Operation: Lone Star.

Just last week, a group of migrants stormed the border fence near El Paso, clashing with U.S. security forces. This group of soldiers is trained to respond to civil disturbances.

Next on our "Call to Earth" segment, we follow a team of researchers working with sharks and turtles in the Bahamas to better understand their ecosystem.



VAUSE: All this week "Call to Earth" is turning the spotlight on the Bahamas and an organization working to advance ocean research and conservation.

Today we join Dr. Austin Gallagher on an expedition working with sharks and sea turtles to learn more about their relationship with seagrass meadows.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Following an epic day, getting up close and personal with sharks. The team from beneath the waves is trying to get back out in the field. Today, they're setting out to the Exumas, a chain of 365 largely, uninhabited islands.

DR. AUSTIN GALLAGHER, FOUNDER/CEO, BENEATH THE WAVES: We're really going to set up a little bit closer. Like the first one in the channel mountain.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Here they hope to tag some sharks, an essential part of their mission in helping protect the animal and their habitat.

DR. GALLAGHER: In order to get these sharks close to the boat to get the data we need on their movements, on their habitat use, what their diet is. We actually need to capture the sharks, so we need to put out these apparatus we designed. They're called drum lines and actually really good for shark tagging because it doesn't harm them and they can still be swimming and breathing.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The work-up includes taking measurements, blood and tissue samples, and ID tagging the sharks.

There are very strict rules on the capture, sample collection and tagging of animals set forth by numerous institutional animal care and use committees.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is the type were going to be putting into the animal.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In addition to following those procedures, Beneath the Waves has also obtained all of the required permits for this expedition.

DR. GALLAGHER: It's a black nurse shark. It's a beautiful shark. Total length is 116. Now we're going to take a little sample here for genetics. We're gong to be able to trace the DNA, the heritage of this animal just from this sample. Now were putting in an identification spaghetti tag run it through the dorsal fin. 1, 2, 3, just like that. Now were going to take a muscle biopsy. You can see we move really fast.

Ok. I'll take a blood sample and then we're going to let it go. 1,2,3 -- it worked. Very quick work-up. Nice little black nurse shark. We want something bigger so let's go next one track. Thats a big nurse.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The larger sharks are kept off the side of the boat

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right now, I'm putting in all the information so fin clips, muscle clips, blood, and all the different pieces that we're getting. We're jotting down the pit tags and the spaghetti tags so that when we look up the data, they'll be able to retract where we got the information from.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: On this trip, the team is also hoping to expand their research to a different kind of tropical sea dweller.

DR. GALLAGHER: I really want to embrace a partnership with sea turtles similarly to what we did with tiger sharks. So on this expedition we're trying to apply tags to sea turtles to see if they can serve as sentinels for seagrass health.

On this expedition, we're going to start some of that work for the first time.



DR. GALLAGHER: Oh, my God, it's a big one, too.


DR. GALLAGHER: Are you sure that's the total amount of ray.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: As is often the case when attempting to work with wildlife. They don't always cooperate.

DR. GALLAGHER Obviously, it's a little bit of an exercise in patience. This is completely new ground for us. So of course, you can't expect to hit a home run first time every time. Just not reality.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Part of the team did eventually track down some turtles. Following established protocols, they were able to attach satellite trackers on their shelves and ID tags on their flippers.

DR. GALLAGHER: And that will then help us with target specificity for our seagrass work, for the coring.

Now let's go to the places that the turtles are deeming are most important. How does that compare to the tiger shark? So it's really about examining these relationships as holistically as possible. And that turtle link between the tiger shark and the seagrass meadow is really where we want to go in the future.



VAUSE: We have this programming note, a special half-hour program of "CALL TO EARTH: EXHIBITION BAHAMAS" will air this Saturday and Sunday here on CNN.

We'll be right back.


VAUSE: As Sean Diddy Combs faces the fallout from federal raids on his homes, some members of his inner circle are also facing some legal challenges.

CNN's Josh Campbell has the latest.


JOSH CAMPBELL, CNN SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Sean Diddy Combs seen in this video obtained by TMZ, said to be filmed at a JMiami airport. He and his twin teenage daughters were headed away on a planned spring break when federal investigators searched his homes Monday, according to a source close to the musician with direct knowledge of the situation.

A video obtained by TMZ said to show the aftermath of the law enforcement action at his home. So far, his current whereabouts are still not publicly known after Department of Homeland security investigators searched for documents, phones, computers, and other electronic devices according to a law enforcement source familiar with the searches.

Combs' attorney issued a statement Tuesday calling the search of the homes a gross overuse of military-level force and a witch-hunt based on meritless accusations, claims disputed by law enforcement veterans.

ANDREW MCCABE, CNN SENIOR LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: You know, the round-house swing he took at the show of force really kind of classic defense attorney tactics to try to turn around a bad press day.

CAMPBELL: The law enforcement action coming after a series of civil lawsuits alleging Combs' involvement in sex trafficking and sexual abuse, allegations Combs has denied.

His attorney's statement saying the musician was quote, "never detained, but spoke to and cooperated with authorities".

ELIZABETH GEDDES, PROSECUTOR IN R. KELLY CHILD PORNOGRAPHY CASE: Until there is an indictment and a potential bail hearing, which could include a limitation on a defendant's travel You would not expect in this type of case there to be any limitation on his travel. CAMPBELL: Combs' legal issues stemming from civil lawsuits including

one filed in February by producer Rodney Jones also known as Lil Rod, accused Combs of among other things, sexual assault.

And other members of his inner circle also now facing legal issues. Actor Cuba Gooding, Jr., named as a defendant in an amended complaint filed by Jones in February. Jones stating in the lawsuit that he believes Combs was grooming him to pass them off to his friends. Alleging that Combs suggested Jones get to know Gooding, Jr. while on the mogul's yacht in the Virgin Islands last year and claiming Gooding, Jr. began touching, groping, and fondling Jones before he was able to forcibly push him away.

The filing included two images described a screenshots from a video of Gooding, Jr. with Combs and Gooding, Jr. with his arm around Jones. An attorney for Cuba Gooding, Jr. had not responded to CNN's request for comment.

And on Monday at the same time as the execution of the search warrants were underway, an arrest of one of Combs' associates. 25-year-old Brendan Paul was charged with possession of cocaine and marijuana- laced candy, allegedly found inside his personal travel bags at a Miami airport.

And you're looking at new affiliate video obtained by CNN. That's Sean Combs' Gulfstream 550 executive jet at a Miami airport on Wednesday, but still no public sign of Sean Combs nor have we heard directly from him, nor for that matter, have we heard from federal investigators about what, if anything, they found during those searches and whether any of that formation could result in criminal charges.

Josh Campbell, CNN -- Los Angeles.



VAUSE: Germany's Kennel Club warns that the future of the Dachshund, one of the country's most popular dogs could soon be in jeopardy. That's because German lawmakers are considering a law that targets torture breeding.

The draft bill aims to prohibit practices that produce skeletal anomalies or that inflict long-term suffering on animals. The stubby legs and the long back make the Dachshunds kind of a target says the German Kennel Club. They're called sausage dogs for a reason.

One breeder says the bill is aimed at breeding as a whole and favors wolf-type hounds.

Lisa Lange is senior vice president of communications for PETA and joins us this hour from Los Angeles. Thank you for being with us.

LISA LANGE, SENIOR VP OF COMMUNICATIONS, PETA: Thank you for having me. VAUSE: German authorities insist that this bill, which is still a

bill, not a law yet. It's meant to target what's called torture breeding, and well get to more on that in a moment. But they say it doesn't mean an end to breeding of dachshunds and, but should it. You know these sausage dogs or wiener dogs, whatever you want to call them.

Are they suffering? Are they in pain because of their frames? You know, their long backs, small legs, which is a direct result of how they're being bred.

LANGE: Yes, we do believe it should be a ban on breeding the dachshund. It is part of the Animal Protection Act, and it's aimed at, as you say, ending the breeding of torture breeds. And they define that because for this dog specifically they're bred to be very long and have short legs. And what that does is it leads to joint issues and sometimes even a collapsed spine. And if that sounds painful, it's because it is exceptionally painful.

There is no excuse for breeding any dog for a look. If you buy a dog for a look you shouldn't have a dog.

VAUSE: Yes. One breeder though, Dachshunds, told CNN in Germany, any ban would be outrageous and added this. "For 136 years, we have not changed our standard breeding practices." And Dachshunds, usually they have long lives, several have been the world's oldest dogs. They've been Olympic mascots in Germany. They're part of the national identity. So what's your response to all of that.

LANGE: Well, it's time. It's time to change it. The fact that these dogs have been bred for so long and living in pain for so long is not an excuse to keep going. It's quite the opposite.

And were seeing movements not just in Germany, but in the Netherlands, Austria, Norway.

Norway has out and out banned flat faced breeds, you know, breeding in pair of breeds like French bulldogs, because of everything we know about how these animals suffer terribly.

Again, they're breeding these animals for a certain and it has caused a tremendous amount of suffering. These are franken-dogs. It's really like a sci-fi horror movie what these animals go through. So it is time to ban them.

VAUSE: Yes. And that's the point. The French bulldog in particular, they struggle to breathe every breath from birth to death is difficult. They can't even reproduce naturally. They're simply rare, when they do. That seems to be the very definition of a torture breed.

LANGE: Absolutely so their bred so that their smushed faces are pushed all the way back up against their skull which means that they don't have the normal anatomical features, which in this instance means that they have shortened and narrowed the breathing passage.

So when you see these dogs, so many people you see on Instagram, they look, oh, look how cute. My dog is snoring. No, no.

They spend their days struggling to breathe and as you said too English bulldogs, 80 percent of them can't give birth naturally. Their heads are too big and they have, they've been bred to have hips so narrow that they have to have caesarian sections.

VAUSE: Every year (INAUDIBLE) across the United States kill 309,000 dogs, more than half-a-million cat because they can't find homes for them. Those shelters, according to "Time Magazine" are overwhelmed and overflowing with more workers headed back to the office and pet essentials like food and veterinarian care prices swelling, the number of unwanted dogs has climbed, in fact it soared across this country.

So breeding dogs with physical deformities seems especially cruel, given the number of healthy dogs in shelters right now in need of a home.

LANGE: Oh, absolutely. You know who also doesn't have these physical ailments is the good old fashion mutt and there you will find -- you'll also find purebred dogs in rescues and shelters, but you're right, there is a homeless animal crisis in the United States.

I'm from Los Angeles. They are turning away cats and dogs at shelters because they're so overcrowded. They're telling people to put stray dogs back on the street, boxes of cats who have been found, turned into shelters. They're turning animals away. That's a dereliction of duty, but it's also an overpopulation crisis.

There is no excuse for buying a dog when there are so many lovely dogs and cats in shelters who need homes.


VAUSE: There is nothing like a rescue dog. I want you to listen to a clip from the movie, it's called "Wiener Dog".

Here it is.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A dog is not human. It's an animal. Nature doesn't care about them.

It's sad, but true.

We're a dog's only friend.


VAUSE: With friends like that, huh.

I mean, it's a satirical dark comedy, but yes, it gets to the point here. Is the problem here how we view not just dogs, but all other animals as property or things that we own with no rights as opposed to recognizing that they have emotional awareness, they're more than just property, and we should be acting more like guardians than owners. LANGE: Yes absolutely.

And I do think there is a change. I think more people are starting to see that these are individuals. They have individual needs and desires and thoughts.

And it's important that we understand who dogs are and who cats are instead of oh, look, it's a little Yorkie accessory or I want to get a labradoodle because my neighbor has one.

They're not things to collect like lamps and dresses and all of that. They depend on you. They eat when we allow them to eat. They go on walks when we say they can go on walks. And it is incumbent upon us to take -- to understand their needs and to do right by that.

To treat them as family members and not things that you can just show off to your friends and then decide. Oh, well, now that I'm back at work or now that I'm back at school or I'm moving, I'm going to turn them into the shelter. Thats why we have the crisis we have now.

VAUSE: Lisa, thank you for being with us. Really appreciate it.

LANGE: Thank you

VAUSE: Before we go, climate change is slowing down the earth's rotation and will eventually cost everyone a second of their time.

Mexico-U.S. (ph) study in the journal "Nature", says meltwater is draining away from the poles towards the equator. well that extra mass is tapping the brakes on the globe's spin. That could then cause scientists to subtract a leap second. And about 2028, these seconds are used on atomic clocks and the earth's rotation are out of sync by about one second. Some feel leap seconds could wreak havoc on computers, much like the Y2k bug never did because it turned out to be a dud.

(INAUDIBLE) impact, but it's another reason why we should be aware of the climate crisis nonetheless.

Thank you for watching. I'm John Vause.

CNN NEWSROOM continues with rosemary Church after a short break, or less.