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Campbell Brown

NFL Player Dies; Top Mexican Drug Kingpin Killed

Aired December 17, 2009 -   ET


ANNOUNCER: CNN primetime begins right now.

RICK SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Tonight, the questions we want answered.

Did the good guys just win big in that bloody drug war next door? Extraordinary video. How big a hit is this for the Mexican cartel? You'll see how one of the most wanted men in Mexico is killed in a spectacular shootout.

An NFL team in tears. Tonight, the mystery surrounding the death of Bengals wide receiver Chris Henry. Witnesses explain what really happened.

A major cancer breakthrough. Can skin and lung cancer now be predicted with a simple blood test? Can it save your life? Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins me to break it down.

And here comes the bride. This guy just married a character from a videogame. And he's serious. Is this where technology is taking us?

ANNOUNCER: CNN primetime begins now. In for Campbell Brown, Rick Sanchez.

SANCHEZ: Hi, everybody. I'm Rick Sanchez, in for Campbell Brown.

We start tonight, as always, with the "Mash Up."

Our top story tonight: One of our military's most sophisticated weapons has been hacked. Terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan have successfully hacked into U.S. predator drones flying over targets on the battlefield and they did it using something you can get for about 26 bucks.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Insurgents used a program to intercept live feeds from U.S. military predator drones, monitoring targets in Iraq.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What was surprising was that the military computers, the military drones weren't using hardened technology.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One defense official dismissed the vulnerability as, quote, "an old issue" that has been fixed. But other sources suggest the military is still working to make sure its eyes in the sky do not also provide enemies with a real-time view of the battlefield.


SANCHEZ: By the way, those drones, costing about $5 million a piece, have become one of the Obama's administration's weapons of choice in the fight against al Qaeda. Tonight, the Pentagon is insisting the hackers did not compromise any missions.

You are not going to believe what's going on in Congress which exemplifies how this debate over health care has gotten both rancorous and down right nasty.

Senator Joe Lieberman who has become the target of liberal anger over his flip-flop on expanding Medicare, wanted more time to speak today which is normally granted. But look how he was shut down suddenly by Senator Al Franken.


SEN. JOE LIEBERMAN (I), CONNECTICUT: Broad savings in health care and health insurance for pretty much everybody in our country...

SEN. AL FRANKEN (D), MINNESOTA: The senator has spoken for -- I'm sorry, the senator has spoken for 10 minutes.

LIEBERMAN: I wonder if I could ask unanimous consent for just an additional moment.

FRANKEN: In my capacity as senator from Minnesota, I object.

LIEBERMAN: Really? OK. Don't take it personally.

SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: I've been around here 20-some years, the first time I've ever seen a member denied an extra minute or two to finish his remarks. And I must say that I don't know what's happening here in this body, but I think it's wrong.


SANCHEZ: Tonight, a tragic end as well to a troubled life. NFL star Chris Henry died this morning after falling off the back of a pickup truck yesterday. Police say that Henry was involved in a domestic dispute with his fiancee at the time of the accident.

A little later we're going to play the dramatic 911 call for you.

Henry was 26 years old -- one of the league's most notorious players, by the way, with multiple arrests and a host of infractions on and off the field.


FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: Police say he fell off a pickup truck during a fight with his fiancee. They say the woman was trying to drive off when Henry jumped into the truck bed.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Chris Henry was one of the featured players in the HBO documentary "Hard Knocks" earlier this year.

CHRIS HENRY, NFL PLAYER: It changed my whole life. I stopped hanging out with a lot of people I used to. I stopped going out to places.

MIKE BROWN, BENGAL'S OWNER: He had worked through troubles in his life and had finally seemingly reached the point where everything was going to blossom and he was going to have the future that we all wanted for him and he wanted for himself.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He cared about this team, cared about the people who cared for him. He was just a loving person.


SANCHEZ: And again, we're going to be all over that story with new details and the 911 calls.

Today, a Florida judge freed a man who spent more than three decades in prison for a crime that he did not commit. Listen.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sir, you are a free man. Congratulations.


RICHARD LUI, CNN ANCHOR: And with those words and that smile, 35 years in prison for horrific crimes that he did not commit, finally, freedom.

JOHN ZARRELLA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Is it one of those things where you kind of pinch yourself and you say, "Is this really happening?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, it's not really that.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, not really that.

ZARRELLA: Long overdue.




SANCHEZ: In fact, the DNA test showed that James Bain did not kidnap, did not rape a 9-year-old boy back in 1974. Bain was only 19 when convicted. He is now 54.

A nine-year-old boy will have to stay in Brazil and his New Jersey dad won't be able to take him home for Christmas. He was shut down -- the dad was -- by Brazil's Supreme Court which ruled that the boy must stay in Brazil until at least February.

The decision came just one day after the lower court said that the boy's father, David Goldman could take his son back to the United States.


WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: David Goldman is on the phone with us right now.

DAVID GOLDMAN, DAD (via telephone): I, really, in my heart of hearts, can't imagine that Brazil wants to be viewed as a country that can take a child, keep him away from a parent.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hoping yesterday's unanimous appeals court ruling granting him custody of his son by Friday would be the end of five-year ordeal. But just before the close of court today, another delay. A different judge, the same judge who stopped Sean from being reunited with his father last June again blocked the boy's return.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sean was taken to Brazil five years ago by his mother who then divorced David Goldman and remarried. She died last year and her second husband refuses to give the boy up.

GOLDMAN: I hope this stops soon and I hope my son will be saved to come home to his family.


SANCHEZ: We'll follow up for you.

Now, to "The Punch Line." Hard to believe it, but tonight marks 20 years on the air for America's favorite dysfunctional family "The Simpsons."

You want to look back? We got one.


BART SIMPSON: I know I got you mad once in a while.

HOMER SIMPSON: No, don't, don't, no, no, no, don't, no.

BART SIMPSON: Ay caramba (ph).



HOMER SIMPSON: Go for it Bart. Go out for the long bomb.


HOMER SIMPSON: Attaboy, Bart! Catch this one and I'll buy you all chocolate milk shakes.

BART SIMPSON: Oh, boy, oh, boy, oh boy.

HOMER SIMPSON: Next time, put a little effort into it, boy.


SANCHEZ: And there you go. And that is "The Mash-Up."

All right. A story that a lot of people all over the country are following. Tonight, witnesses explain what they saw when an NFL player fell to his death from a pickup truck. I'm going to play for you the 911 tape in full.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE CALLER: I need a police officer on Oak Road. I'm riding behind a yellow truck. It's an F-150. And it's got a black man on it with no shirt on.


SANCHEZ: I'll play the whole tape for you, but also, I want you to watch a piece of this.


SANCHEZ: This is crazy. That's gunfire you're listening to. It's a drug bust in Mexico that lasted hours. I'm going to tell you who was taken out.


SANCHEZ: Welcome back. I'm Rick Sanchez.

NFL football player Chris Henry was pronounced dead today. The wide receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals fell off a pickup truck during what police are saying was a domestic dispute with his fiancee, the mother of his three kids.

Well, here's the first 911 call received by police. This, by the way, you're going to want to listen in, it's from a woman who was following, driving behind the pickup truck.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE CALLER: I'm riding behind a yellow truck. It's a F-150 the tag says. It's got a black man on it with no shirt on. And he's got arm in a cast. He's got some black pants on. He's beating on the back of this truck window and the truck is driving. I don't know if he's trying to break in it or something. It just looks crazy.

OPERATOR: You said the vehicle is occupied by a black female?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE CALLER: That's what it looked like was driving it and a black male hanging on the back of it. The black male doesn't have on his shirt and has a cast on. It looks like the left arm.


SANCHEZ: And then if that isn't odd enough, sadly, this next call comes in just a few minutes later. This is the man who calls police after he finds Henry on the road.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE CALLER: I just pulled up and there's a lady trying -- there's a man in the road. He looks dead. There's no movement.

OPERATOR: OK. Can you find out if he's awake?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE CALLER: No, he's definitely unconscious. He is not awake.


SANCHEZ: Joining me now to go over this tragedy is Joe Reedy. He's the Bengals beat writer for the "Cincinnati Enquirer," and also, I've asked CNN senior legal analyst, Jeff Toobin, to stop by and visit us and take us through what may have happened here legally.

Joe, I want to start with you. I'm still not sure that I understand, and I think a lot of people aren't quite sure what happened here. Clear this up for us, if you would. Was he chasing his fiancee who jumped in the truck and tried to drive away to avoid him? Do we have that right?

JOE REEDY, BENGALS BEAT WRITER, CINCINNATI ENQUIRER: Rick, as far as -- as far as we know, that -- that's part -- that's what we know at the moment. The Charlotte Police Department right now is being very quiet on details. What we do know is that there was a domestic dispute at the residence of Chris fiancee's parents. She tried to go in the truck, he chased after her.

SANCHEZ: But we don't know -- we don't know, Joe, at this point, why she was trying to get away from him. And after all, I mean, she's the mother of his three children. That doesn't sound like normal behavior. What was going on there? Do we have any idea?

REEDY: We have no idea at the moment, Rick.

SANCHEZ: Is there -- is there an expectation -- if everything is true as we know it right now, Jeff, and that man was in the back of her car, shirtless but banging on the window -- is there -- is there an expectation that she should stop so that he cannot fall off the truck?

JEFF TOOBIN, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: It's hard to know. I mean, it really is hard to know under the circumstances. Obviously, one of the things you're going to want to know if you're the police officer is, did she intentionally drive the car in a way to try to get him off, to sort of get him to fall off. SANCHEZ: To which she would say, "Yes, because I had a mad man who was threatening me back there."

TOOBIN: Correct. I mean, this, frankly, looks like, based on what we know here, something that will not end in any sort of criminal charges. I mean, this looks like a tragic accident where someone, where Chris Henry died, but whether -- I mean, obviously, the only person you would think of to bring charges against would be his companion. And it just doesn't look like a crime was committed based on what we know.

SANCHEZ: But allow me to -- allow me to put this on the record, which I think, you know, might cause some heat out there. But isn't this -- and, Joe, you know, I'd like your reaction to this as well -- isn't this the flip side of the Tiger Woods case? I mean, nobody talked about her chasing him, possibly with a 9-iron or a wedge or whatever she had, is that because there's a different standard for women and men when it comes to domestic violence?

TOOBIN: I don't know. I'm not buying your analogy, to tell you the truth. I just think they're very different circumstances. I mean, you've got the guy on a back of a pickup truck there. You only had one person in the car. I just don't think there's an enough comparison to be made there.

SANCHEZ: Well, maybe you're right and there isn't enough comparison is his record, what he had done. And, Joe, let me go back to you.

TOOBIN: Joe will know this better than I. I mean, his rap sheet is a long, long, long...

SANCHEZ: And that would come in. That would come in. I mean, if he had threatened her before...

TOOBIN: It certainly would be something a cop would want to know.

SANCHEZ: Joe, tell us what his record is. What do you know about his past.

REEDY: Well, there have been five arrests in 29 months, but none of them have had to deal with domestic violence. I mean, I knew Chris. I had the opportunity to spend time with his fiancee and children. And they seem like a very happy couple.

There was no -- there was no sense that there had been -- there had been problems that existed between the two. I mean, they were in Charlotte because Chris was placed on injured reserve last month and, actually, they were in the area because Chris got cleared by the team to go down there and they were making -- they were solidifying wedding plans to get married in March.

SANCHEZ: You've talked to both of them. By the way, just let me ask you flat-out, was he a dangerous guy? Was he ever perceived by anyone or described by anyone as being dangerous? REEDY: No. I mean, knowing him and stuff, the way he's turned his life around the last 18, 19 months, he's been described as a -- he's been described as a quiet person, one who at -- one who at times had turned his life around.

SANCHEZ: Well, you know, I'm going to interrupt because I have the latest description of him. And this was done by HBO. It's about a guy with a troubled life. Here's Henry in that clip from HBO. Let's watch together.


HENRY: I just changed my whole life. I just stopped hanging around with a lot of people I used to. I stopped going to places. And I told myself I wasn't going to make bad decision anymore and I'm going to be smarter about everything.


SANCHEZ: Obviously, you had gotten to know her as well. You're one of the few reporters who actually met them both. What was she like? And what was their relationship like?

REEDY: She was -- she was very quiet. I would say she had a confidence about her. When Chris was released last April by the Bengals, she was one of the few people that actually stuck by him and made sure that he would be on the right path, to where he wasn't going out to club, he wasn't hanging out with the wrong people. That when all those bad influences, when Chris finally made decision for himself and was able to clear and turn his life around, she was there and kind of provided a steadying, loving environment for him and his children.

SANCHEZ: And, finally, Jeff, you don't -- as you look at this case -- you don't see charges coming out of this case.

TOOBIN: It looks unlikely to me. Obviously, there's only one survivor here.


TOOBIN: And the issue would be: did she commit any sort of crime? It just -- based on these facts -- doesn't look that way.

SANCHEZ: Including his past.

TOOBIN: Yes. I mean, you know, even though he had a bad past, it doesn't mean he deserved to die.


TOOBIN: But that is something the police are going to look at. And you know, frankly, just because someone says they turned their life around, it doesn't mean they actually turned their life around. And you don't know, you know, what led up to this. I -- you know, a young man has died and that's sad, but the legal system doesn't always have to be involved when someone dies. SANCHEZ: A famous, wealthy, great athlete and a young man as well, which is interesting when it looks like something like this.

My thanks to both of you. Appreciate your time.

When we come back, the drug cartel in Mexico has taken a major hit. And tonight, the video that we've received out of there that proves this is extraordinary. Take a listen.



SANCHEZ: Welcome back. I'm Rick Sanchez.

Tonight, you're going to see one of the most extraordinary shootouts that we've seen in a long time, which results in the death of one of Mexico's most notorious drug bosses. Some say he's the boss of bosses. His name is Arturo Beltrain Leyva (ph) or Arturo Beltran Leyva.

Here's the video, by the way.


SANCHEZ: Are you hearing that? That's a housing complex in Cuernavaca. Let's keep listening.


SANCHEZ: It's outside of Mexico City. I hear the police officers yelling. That means, "Don't move, don't move."

Those are actually members of the Mexican Navy, by the way, along with police who have moved in to take on a cartel leader. Let's keep listening.


SANCHEZ: That's automatic gunfire you're listening to. In total, six members of the cartel are killed here.

So, what I want to do now is take this video and this story apart with two people who know it from the inside out.

Robert Strang is a former special agent for the DEA. And Michael Ware, as you know, just got back from this bloody border town of Juarez across from El Paso.

MICHAEL WARE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's a charming little place indeed.

SANCHEZ: Charming little place indeed, right?

Bob, let me start with you. They call this guy the "jefe of jefes," "the boss of bosses." How big is he? ROBERT STRANG, FORMER DEA SPECIAL AGENT: Well, he's certainly one of the major cartel leaders in Mexico. And there are other bosses as big as he is. And you know, as you know, Mexico is running the cartels through the country and all through the United States.

The Justice Department says now that these cartels, including this one, are in 250 cities across the United States. So, all the money that's being made here in the U.S., it's crossing the border going back to Mexico, and ultimately ends up with people like him. And there's probably only about eight people at his level across all the cartels. He's a pretty big player.

SANCHEZ: Can he be replaced? Can you replace a guy like this?

WARE: Well, it depends on what happened. (INAUDIBLE) I mean, you can have a power struggle from within. You can have other cartels come and try to feed off the carcass or he can have a smooth transition from one of his lieutenants. We're just going to have to wait and see.

SANCHEZ: Let's look at -- can we look at some of this video again? Can you play some of that video again for me, if you would?

I want to just show how big this operation is.


SANCHEZ: And taken to consideration, fellows, that this effort has been going on for sometime now. Why has it taken it this long -- taken them so long to actually go in full force and do something like this? Or do they do it and we don't know about it?

WARE: First, you've got to get the actionable intelligence. Why haven't you found Osama bin Laden?



WARE: It's the same thing.

STRANG: Rick, 14,000 people have died in the last 3 1/2 years.


STRANG: Fourteen thousand because of this drug cartel.

SANCHEZ: Because of Leyva. Because of Leyva.

STRANG: Look at this. Look at the innocent people that got injured, the innocent people that got hurt. Look at the kidnappings in our own country because of this cartel. This is a huge, widespread problem. This -- by the way, this just isn't a problem in Mexico. This is a problem for us in the U.S.

WARE: I couldn't agree more. STRANG: These cartels are running some of the biggest organized crime networks in our cities, in our country, as we speak.

WARE: In the United States. But this is an American drug war and it's being paid for with Mexican blood.

SANCHEZ: I don't see that. In fact, what I see is that we are giving them the money because we're buying the drugs from there.


WARE: Exactly. Exactly.

SANCHEZ: That's what I'm saying. Well, that's what I'm saying.

WARE: This is a war being fought to supply America's demand for illicit drugs.

SANCHEZ: But where you're wrong, I believe is, the violence has not poured over the border. We're not seeing Americans...


WARE: What I'm saying it's being paid for in Mexican blood. Are they less than Americans?

STRANG: The violence is here because it was going on in Mexico. There's no question.


SANCHEZ: How so? How so?

STRANG: Look at the arrests.

SANCHEZ: But not direct violence from them.


SANCHEZ: We don't have cartel members coming into the United States...


WARE: Yes, you do. You have kidnappings in El Paso. You have murders.

STRANG: Two hundred fifty arrests by the Justice Department and DEA this year alone. There's four other major investigations going on right now. These are arrests of Mexicans in the U.S.

SANCHEZ: But let me tell you how they do it. I read this story recently in "Rolling Stone" that detailed exactly -- and you can disagree with the story, but I'll just tell you what the story says. It says they use low-level operatives here in the United States. Most of these people have no idea what's going on with guys like Leyva. That's who they use to keep themselves buffered from the higher-ups.

SANCHEZ: Is that true?


STRANG: Look, first of all, I don't -- "Rolling Stone," what it says is partially true. But the information that we have and the facts that we have here in the U.S. is that these cartels at high levels are putting people the cities here that they can afford to have arrested. People who are loyal to them, people who can get the money back to them.

As soon as they make a big kilo or two kilo sale of heroin, cocaine, marijuana, the amphetamine, the money goes right back to Mexico. They have total control over what's going on in almost every American city.

SANCHEZ: That's an insane...


WARE: And America is doing virtually nothing.

SANCHEZ: That's an insidious way of dealing with it.

WARE: America is doing virtually nothing.


WARE: Well, the number of DEA agents in Central America, for example, you know...

SANCHEZ: Colombia has more than any, right?

WARE: Well, it begins in Colombia. It begins Colombia.


WARE: ... ships through Central America. It's banked in Panama. The distribution is now through Mexico. We're seeing the (INAUDIBLE) ship.

In Central America, what's the total number of DEA agents? I think there's more DEA agents in Albany, New York than throughout Central America.

STRANG: Well, look...

SANCHEZ: Why is that?

STRANG: Well, because, first of all...

WARE: How much are we spending? They're making billions and we're trying to keep...

(CROSSTALK) SANCHEZ: Bob, he's actually, he raises a good point. Why isn't there more of an emphasis in places, like Mexico, to protect us from that border?

STRANG: Mexico is priority for our government. Calderon has been cooperating with the U.S. We've been providing them with assets, with resources, with agents, training.

WARE: Token, token.

STRANG: Let me tell you -- but we've been giving a lot of support.

WARE: And how institutionalized are the cartels in the political life of Mexico?

STRANG: No question. We helped dismantle the cartels in Cali, Colombia, in Medellin, Colombia.

WARE: Yes.

STRANG: Are we working with Mexico now for the first time since Calderon was elected?


WARE: Can you run for president in Mexico without a cartel backing you?

STRANG: Calderon did. And he's getting them now, isn't he? We're getting there.

WARE: Definitely, it seems were doing OK.

STRANG: We're doing OK.

SANCHEZ: And let me ask you this one final question before we go.

As we look at this video, will we then see more nationalized efforts, (INAUDIBLE), as we call them, going in and making these kinds of operations, because usually you take somebody in the government like you say, would pick up the phone and say, "Hey, Leyva, guess what, these guys are coming to get you, you better make a run for it." Nobody called this guy. They got him.

STRANG: They got them. And we're going to hopefully...

SANCHEZ: What does that said?

STRANG: That says that somewhere we got a break. That says somewhere the government in Mexico was able to get through and attack these high-level operatives. This is from wiretap information, it's from informants.

(CROSSTALK) SANCHEZ: Is your agency...

STRANG: My former agency is working very closely with the Mexican government. We are providing them with the training, with the financing, with the resources. That's how this was done.

WARE: But has the dynamic changed, even with his removal from the landscape? The profit incentive is still there.

SANCHEZ: Well, let's see.


WARE: Will this change the war?

STRANG: Let me say this. You can't let this go on in Mexico. It's a border with the country.

WARE: Exactly.

STRANG: There's so much going on there. I worry about people coming in across the border, explosive, drugs. It's too close to home.


WARE: That's the question.

SANCHEZ: Let's talk about next time, gentlemen. Thanks so much for being with us.

Michael, Bob, appreciate it as usual. A good and lively discussion.

Tonight, a lung and skin cancer breakthrough. Think about yourself taking a simple blood test that could possibly predict if you're going to get it, one of those cancers. Are we there because of a genetic discovery? Sanjay Gupta is going to be joining me in just a moment. He's going to take us through this.

Also, what you're looking at right there, the first time anyone has ever seen anything like this. That's an undersea volcano, as the volcano actually erupts, the camera captures it. I've never seen anything like this before. I'm going to take you through it and tell you what it means with one of your favorite scientists. I know my kids' favorite scientist anyway. You probably figure out who that is.


SANCHEZ: Tonight, a major medical breakthrough. Scientists have cracked the genetic code of two of the most deadly cancers, and this could change how we detect and we treat the disease. This is just on its face it seems like fantastic news.

Our expert, Sanjay Gupta joining us. Is it as good as it sounds? DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: GUPTA: It's very good. There's no question, being able for the first time to actually sequence the entire genome of a cancer cell. I mean, this is what it's been about for some time time, Rick, to figure out what cancer really is, figure out are there particular areas that make a cancer cell turn on, and what can you do about it.

SANCHEZ: I'm reading that you can now take a simple blood test and that will determine what kind of cancer you have, if it's one of these two, and then they can diagnosis it so much earlier. They could start treating you earlier.

GUPTA: That's the goal. So if you find -- if you have eventually developed a blood test that can find OK, we have cancer at a very, very early stage. It has to be a certain size to find it on a CT scan or MRI scan or something like that. But if you can find it at the cellular stage, A, you found it much earlier before someone's had any symptoms, and B, out of all those targets now on the genome that's spinning around behind your head right now, one of those is abnormal. And it seems to be abnormal in melanoma, abnormal lung cancer, and that's a perfect opportunity for an intervention.

SANCHEZ: Why only those two? Why are we just dealing with lung cancer and melanoma? If they can do those two, why can't they do every other cancer?

GUPTA: I think this is beginning. And they've done other cancers at least partially. You know breast cancer, for example...


GUPTA: ... they talk about something known as BRCA1, BRCA2. That's breast cancer one, breast cancer two. Those are two genes that were identified that were good markers, as you said, for women to go on to develop breast cancer. But they also developed a target.

Now there's a drug Herceptin. People who deal with cancer would know what I'm talking about, but this was a drug that was specifically designed to try and attack one of those areas on the genome.

SANCHEZ: All right, before I let you go, tell me how I can use this. Tell me what I do now if I'm a smoker or if I'm someone who comes from a family where melanoma has been prevalent. Does that mean I ask my doctor to check me, give me this blood test, I want it now?

GUPTA: Well, I don't think we're there yet for the lay public. It can be done, but I don't think what's good enough to say for sure after you get the blood test, Rick, you have an X percent chance of developing this, or, you know, what exactly to do it. But that still has to be figured out.

But it's worth pointing out, these two cancers are two cancers that are largely caused by environmental factors. Melanoma by the sun, lung cancer by cigarette smoking.

SANCHEZ: Smoking. GUPTA: So, you know, most likely what the recommendation your doctor is going to give you, even if the blood test comes back a little positive is the same advice he would have given you in the first place.

SANCHEZ: But can he say, you know what? Two people can smoke, but you're going to be more predisposed to get cancer...


SANCHEZ: ... than the other guy over there because I'm finding this gene in your blood.

GUPTA: That's right. That's right. And that's eventually what's going to be the idea, who is the most likely to develop this lung cancer is particularly difficult because there's not a good screening test out there right now. But at some point, could you develop one based on this. That's the idea and the treatment.

SANCHEZ: Now, then, it is good news and it's very promising.


SANCHEZ: Thanks a lot.

GUPTA: Tens of hundreds of cancers out there so --

SANCHEZ: Interesting information. Appreciate it.

GUPTA: Sure.

SANCHEZ: And right now, President Obama is on a plane to Copenhagen. He is trying to get a deal done on global warming while Democrats and Republicans are brawling and stalling over health care reform. This is a high stakes game and the president, by the way, could walk away with nothing on both. And it's getting ugly.


SEN. AL FRANKEN (D), MINNESOTA: The senator has spoken for ten minutes.

SEN. JOE LIEBERMAN (I), CONNECTICUT: I wonder if I could ask unanimous consent for just an additional moment.

FRANKEN: In my capacity as senator from Minnesota, I object.

LIEBERMAN: Really? OK. Don't take it personally.



SANCHEZ: President Obama has had a hell of a climatic week, so to speak. It kicked off with him trying to get the bankers to fall in line. Then he had to break up a fight among Democrats that's really still going on with health care. And right now, he's on his way to a climate change summit in Copenhagen, where some argue the future of the planet is hanging in the balance.

There's been scandal, there have been protests and controversy, but when it's all said and done, the president may walk away from this thing without a deal. CNN's Becky Anderson is following this for us live.

Becky, the message out of Copenhagen has been the sky is falling. You've got to do something about this global warming thing. How is it possible then that this thing could end and our president could walk away without any kind of deal or anything being done about it?

BECKY ANDERSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: It seems remarkable, doesn't it? I'm not sure he shouldn't just turn around and get back on that plane again and get out of here. I mean, he's not here yet obviously at this stage. But somebody described these talks to me earlier today at the 11th hour, of course, which is what it is at this point as heading for disaster.

I've just seen one of the very, very high-level lead negotiators from the developing world. He simply wanted to put to him, you know, how are we going to do tomorrow? He went -- now, that doesn't bode well, does it? I do know that the world leaders who are already here, Rick, behind closed doors again are expecting to be behind closed doors all night. They're starting at 10:00 p.m. local time and they're going right on through the night.

They want to get something out of this. It's not going to be a legally binding treaty. It may not even be what they could consider an agreement at this stage. It may be an agreement to agree to agree to agree at some point next year, and it may just be a statement. It's not looking good at this point.

SANCHEZ: What would have happened if the president of the United States, because it doesn't seem like it's going to be that fruitful for him to go anyway, but what would have happened, what would the reaction have been internationally if this president failed to show at Copenhagen?

ANDERSON: That would have been an absolute disaster as far as his PR is concerned. Listen, you and I know he's got this great reputation on the world stage and it hasn't been sullied to date. Not really.

I know at home things are tough for him at the moment, but he's got a hell of a reputation on the world stage. If he hadn't paid stop here in Copenhagen, I think the U.S. would have been accused of being a spoiler to this deal. You know and I know that Hillary Clinton pitched up just some six or seven hours ago here, sort of as a lead, as it were, for President Barack Obama. She put an offer on the table. It's been discussed at present. It may work out for him in the end. If he hadn't paid stop, it would look absolutely terrible, Rick.

SANCHEZ: The deal doesn't look good. Becky Anderson from Copenhagen. Thanks once again for bringing us up-to-date.

And meanwhile, if you think the president is heading into a political mess in Copenhagen, it's nothing compared to the storm that he's leaving behind back home. How petty and how ugly did things get in the Senate health care fight today? You see for yourself.

Three big names, all names you know, Franken, Lieberman, McCain, watch how fast a simple routine courtesy, asking for more time to finish talking turns into a spitting match.



SEN. AL FRANKEN (D), MINNESOTA: The senator has spoken for ten minutes.

SEN. JOE LIEBERMAN (I), CONNECTICUT: I wonder if I could ask unanimous consent for just an additional moment.

FRANKEN: In my capacity as senator from Minnesota, I object.

LIEBERMAN: Really? OK. Don't take it personally.

SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: I just saw -- I've been around here 20-some years. The first time I've ever seen a member denied an extra minute or two to finish his remarks. And I must say that I don't know what's happening here in this body, but I think it's wrong.


SANCHEZ: I've asked CNN's senior political correspondent Candy Crowley to join me now to take us through this.

Candy, what is going on here?

CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Let's just say that at the moment things are a little prickly up on Capitol Hill. They'd like to go home. The Democrats on the left and on the right are hurting. They're the ones sort of in some ways holding up a final bill here as Democrats ask for this or for that and Joe Lieberman, obviously independent. But it's Republicans who are taking up time on the floor.

So what happens, it actually was -- Senator Franken was the conduit to this. But this was on orders from Senator Reid. He's the majority leader and he said OK, the rule is that everybody is going to stay to ten minutes on this particular bill. And so ten minutes. Not one more minute, not two more minutes, which is very routine. I never have seen anybody cut off either.

Although I'm told earlier in the day, they tried to cut off Senator Cornyn in the same way saying hey, your ten minutes is up. And he said, but there's like no one else is here, you know, that wants to speak and they let him go on. So, the fact of the matter is, you know that phrase, mostly unions use it called "working by the rule."


CROWLEY: And you do it because you know if you do everything exactly the way you're supposed to do it it's going to really irritate the bosses. So this is working by the rule. And this is the majority leadership saying fine, you want to read the entire bills on the Senate floor, you want to use every tool available to you to slow this down? Then guess what, we're going to work by the book, too. Ten minutes only.

SANCHEZ: While the American people are sitting there going what's going on with these guys and why do they remind me so much of when I was in junior high school?

CROWLEY: Well, sometimes process though in this -- sometimes process is politics. A lot of times process is politics here, and that's what you saw. That was pretty raw politics as we like to say.

SANCHEZ: It certainly was.


SANCHEZ: And that's why we focused on it and that's why we had you here. Candy, thanks so much.

CROWLEY: Thanks, Rick.

SANCHEZ: You have seen a lot of volcanoes blow their stack over the years but nothing quite like this. We've got pictures of one erupting deep in the ocean. You have never seen anything like this until tonight. And Bill Nye, "The Science Guy," is going to be here, and he's going to tell us why this is fascinating.

Gather the kiddies. Bring them over to the TV.


SANCHEZ: Welcome back. I'm Rick Sanchez. I want to show you a video now that I'm told no one has ever seen before. Hit it Renee if you can.

You know what this is? This is a volcano erupting under the ocean. It's about 4,000 feet down in the Pacific Ocean. It's near Samoa. I want to bring in Bill Nye, "The Science Guy." He's probably as fascinated by this as the rest of us are.

We're told there's a lot of interesting stuff about this particular volcano, Bill, but what is it that fascinates you the most?

BILL NYE, "THE SCIENCE GUY": Well, first of all, it's underwater. And secondly, we got video of it, high resolution video. And, of course, it's got bournonite (ph). Who doesn't love bournonite (ph)?

SANCHEZ: What the -- what is that? NYE: It's a mineral that was found or named in southern Japan and its associated with, in the regular world associated with dormant or real old volcanoes. But now we found fresh stuff coming out, so this tells you something about the motion of the earth's crust over the mantle, which is called the plastic rock or semi-liquid rock that underlies everything.

See, it wasn't that long ago in human experience where people didn't think that tectonic plates were a real thing. There was a kooky theory, but now it turns out to be the underlying idea, the fundamental idea on all of geology, yes.

SANCHEZ: Well, you know what else? I hear that down there as we watched those pictures, the acid coming out of the ground is almost like a battery acid. And they would never think that animals could swim or survive in that. And yet there are pictures contained within these that we're showing you in this video that showed shrimp and other microbes were thriving in this. What does that say if they can thrive in such harsh conditions?

NYE: Yes. Well, what we think of as harsh is OK if you're an acid-loving shrimp.

SANCHEZ: But here's the point -- but here's the point. If you can -- if you can survive in that, then might we be wrong to assume that there can't be life in like other planets because they're made of those conditions?

NYE: Oh, there you go, my friend. So the two questions, Rick, the two questions that make humans crazy --- are we alone?


NYE: And where did we -- and where did we come from?

So if we could go, for example, to a place on Mars that would have similar geological conditions and look around for ancient microbes, fossilized microbes, we would now expand our search. We would not eliminate places that we might have thought to be especially acidic, very high acid content because we found these living things. And, by the way --

SANCHEZ: That's fascinating.

NYE: In biological terms are pretty big, yes. So it's one more thing. You know, when I was young, you were taught quite reasonably or quite reasonably that to be a living thing, you needed sunlight.

SANCHEZ: Well, guess what?

NYE: This is another place where they're using some chemical energy to get things done. Yes.

SANCHEZ: I'll tell you, I could talk to you forever. We've got to go because we've got so much other stuff going on. Come on back, Bill Nye, "The Science Guy." NYE: Oh, yes, sir. Thank you.

SANCHEZ: I appreciate it.

A Japanese man has married his fantasy girl. Like many couples, they met online. Here's where it gets weird. She isn't real. She's from a video game, and he's serious about this. After the break.


SANCHEZ: A man has married a video character from a video game and he's serious. It's an amazing story.

CNN's Kyung Lah brings it to us.


KYUNG LAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): She is the perfect woman. Luscious, lovely, devoted and entirely portable. It's why Sal says he loves Nene Anegasaki, this character in a game called "Love Plus" on his Nintendo DS player.

(on camera): Can you love a machine?

SAL: I love this character. Not machine.

LAH (voice-over): Sal who goes by his virtual name Sal 9,000 started playing "Love Plus" in September. The more you play, the more she demands your attention.

So Sal nurtured his relationship, playing every single day, taking Nene with him everywhere. Out on the town, even on vacation. Here to the resort beaches of Guam.

Then he decided to marry her, live web casting the ceremony to thousands of attendees, both virtual and real.

You're not really married to her, are you?

SAL: I understand 100 percent that this is a game, says Sal, pointing out it's not a legal union. And he likes the tongue and cheek humor of his marriage.

LAH: You don't have to buy her dinner ever.

But as I played third wheel on their dinner date, Sal say he doesn't want a real girlfriend.

If you would dump Nene for a real girl?

"I only want Nene right now," says Sal. She's better better than a human girl.

(on camera): Sal 9,000 says his marriage to Nene is just the next step in video gaming. A new way to integrate, if you will. But sociologists say that blurring between the virtual and the real world means less human contact, and that's where the danger begins.

(voice-over): Japan's Internet world Sal has moved beyond Facebook, Twitter or online games. Relationships and marriages to avatars are now a part of the virtual world.

"Sal is not that extreme," says author Hiroshi Ashizaki, who studies game and Internet addiction. Many of today's Japanese youth can't express their true feelings in reality, only in the virtual world. It's a trend Ashizaki says has no sign of slowing down as the entire globe socializes more online and less in person.

(on camera): New outfit.

She changes clothes.

SAL: Yes.

LAH (voice-over): "And we play games, too," says Sal.

How long can this go on? How long can your marriage to her go on?

"The purpose of this game is to enjoy your romantic relationship," says Sal. "Since there is no ending to this game," he says, "you can continue this game forever."

Kyung Lah, CNN, Tokyo.


SANCHEZ: That's crazy. I don't know about you, but that's scary.

"LARRY KING LIVE" starts in just a couple of minutes. And up next, see who's having a little fun at Sarah Palin's expense. No, it's not Tina Fey. We'll show you in the "Download."


BROWN: Larry King is on deck for us. More must-see news happening right now. Mike Galanos with tonight's "Download."

What do you have, Mike?

MIKE GALANOS, HLN PRIME NEWS: Here we go, Rick. If you've been waiting for your H1N1 flu shots, it's finally your turn. Health officials say there's finally enough vaccine for everyone, not just high risk groups. Barely half the states have lifted restrictions and flu activity has slowed, but Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius says getting vaccinated can help protect against another wave. So there you go.

How about this? Eleven judges blocked an airline strike that would have grounded up to a million holiday passengers. British Airways asked for the injunction to keep cabin crews from walking off the job three days before Christmas. Well, now, the union can't strike until after the holidays.

And finally this, America's most famous drag queen with a spoof on Sarah Palin. We all know the cover of Sarah Palin's best-seller "Going Vogue." Here's RuPaul's take, "Going Vogue," a parody of promotion for the second season of RuPaul's TV reality show called "Drag Race" Finding America's Next Great Drag Queen."

There you go, Rick.

SANCHEZ: Yes. One book looks a lot like the other.

GALANOS: I was waiting to see what you're going to do with that. I'll just get out of the way.

SANCHEZ: Yes, I will too now, because I got to hand it over to my buddy, Larry King.

Thanks for spending some time with me. I'm Rick Sanchez. I'll see you again tomorrow. Here's Larry.