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New Day Saturday

Biden Warns Putin About Escalation In Ukraine; Ukraine Cites At Least 440 Unmarked Graves Have Been Discovered At Izium; Infowars Spokeswoman Testifies In Sandy Hook Hoax Case; DeSantis Vows Florida Will Transport More Migrants From Border To Other States; Justice Department Files Motion For Partial Stay To Appeals Court In Mar-A- Lago Documents Case; Mourners Wait Hours To Pay Respects To Queen Elizabeth II. Aired 6-7a ET

Aired September 17, 2022 - 06:00   ET




WHITNEY WILD, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning and welcome to your NEW DAY. It's Saturday September 17. I'm Whitney Wild.

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, Whitney. I'm Boris Sanchez, thank you so much for starting your weekend with us. Welcome to weekend NEW DAY, Whitney.

WILD: Thank you for having me, Boris. Always. Such a great of host --

SANCHEZ: Of course.

WILD: And I'm so glad to be here.

SANCHEZ: Of course, we have plenty to get to this morning. We start with a battle over immigration and the migrants that have been caught in the middle. Florida's governor Ron DeSantis is vowing to transport more migrants from the southern border to so called sanctuary cities after arranging to fly about 50 people from Texas to Martha's Vineyard off the coast of Massachusetts.

WILD: This is all part of a campaign by Republican governors to protest the Biden administration's immigration policies. But the White House says these governors are using the migrants as political pawns.

SANCHEZ: Those taken to Martha's Vineyard are now receiving shelter and humanitarian help at a U.S. military base. Let's go to CNN Senior national correspondent Miguel Marquez who has more on their journey.


MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): After less than 48 unexpected hours in Martha's Vineyard, nearly 50 Venezuelan migrants were given a warm send-off. Volunteers embracing each person as they boarded buses. Then ferries and on to the next part of their long journey. Their unannounced arrival Wednesday old part of a campaign by Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, to send migrants to so called sanctuary cities by surprise.

GOV. RON DESANTIS (R-FL): All we're trying to do is offer transport to sanctuary jurisdictions, free to the alien, but certainly not mandatory. And that way they're able to go and these sanctuary jurisdictions can put their money where their mouth is.

MARQUEZ: These immigrants were picked up in Texas, some of them say they weren't taken to a hotel to wait, then boarded planes. Well, we didn't know until the last minute our destinations such as New York where our relatives reside, he says. Yang Pablo Mora and other immigrants we spoke to hear it say they were promised all sorts of things, including jobs and housing, things that never materialized.

We were told it was humanitarian aid by a foundation that in this case remains unknown, he says. It's just the latest account of migrants seemingly deceived and dropped off. From Washington DC --

CARLA BUSTILLOS, VOLUNTEER: They felt fooled, and they felt that their suffering was exploited.

MARQUEZ: -- to confusion in New York City.

MANUEL CASTRO, COMMISSIONER, NYC MAYOR'S OFFICE OF IMMIGRANT AFFAIRS: Standing at Port Authority he asked me and how do I get to Portland, Oregon.

MARQUEZ: To California where Governor Gavin Newsom has asked the Department of Justice to open an investigation into the controversial practice.

GOV. GAVIN NEWSOM (D-CA): What Ron DeSantis is doing is a disgrace. It's almost monstrous.

DESANTIS: They did get a packet that had the map of Martha's Vineyard. And they're also treated, you know, very well with all this. I mean, they're treated well with meals and everything.

MARQUEZ: While volunteers and officials in Martha's Vineyard promptly responded and cared for their unexpected guests. Lawyers assisting the immigrant say the stop did nothing but detour already desperate people.

RACHEL SELF, LAWYER ASSISTING IMMIGRANTS, MARTHA'S VINEYARD: It is sickeningly cruel, throwing obstacles in the way of people fleeing violence and oppression, some of whom walked through 10 countries in the hopes of finding safety.

LISA BELCASTRO, VOLUNTEER: My heartbreaks for them, because they were not the first priority. They're in my heart forever.

MARQUEZ (on camera): Look, there is no doubt that these immigrants were well taken care of by the people here on Martha's Vineyard. The people here on the vineyard and across the country have even raised money almost $200,000 for these immigrants to help them as they move on in their journey.

But many of these people are trying to maintain their status here. They're here from Venezuela, fleeing political oppression. They have immigration hearings coming up across the country, of Los Angeles, Washington State, Cincinnati, back in Texas, Washington, DC all over the place.

So, the idea of sending them here to Martha's Vineyard, an island off the coast of Massachusetts, really only complicated an already very complicated journey. Back to you.


WILD: President Biden has criticized Republican officials for quote playing politics with human beings.


SANCHEZ: Let's take you to the White House now and CNN's Jasmine Wright who is live there for us. Jasmine, White House officials have not publicly outlined a coordinated response to this. But you reported this week that they are holding meetings on it. What have you learned about what's being discussed in those meetings?

JASMINE WRIGHT, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: That's right, Boris. So holding meetings, but also leaning in on their criticism of those two Republican governors Abbott's for -- Abbott from Texas, DeSantis from Florida, one White House source told me that basically they feel like those governors miscalculate them. That is why you're seeing this increasing intensity when it comes to the criticism coming out of the White House.

We hear President Biden say they're paying games. We heard from Vice President last night, Vice President Kamala Harris, who the migrants were actually dropped at her house and she said that they're playing political stunts with human beings. We heard from a second gentleman, of course, Harris's husband who said that it was shameful. And we also heard a ratcheting up of that same criticism yesterday, from the podium from White House press secretary Korean John Pierre, take a listen.


KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: These vulnerable migrants were reportedly misled about where they were headed, told they would be headed to Boston, misled about what they would be provided when they arrived, promised shelter refuge benefits and more. These are the kinds of tactics we see from smugglers in places like Mexico and Guatemala, and for what a photo op.


WRIGHT: So in addition to that language and calling for Republicans to come to the table on legislation, they're also having meetings. We know yesterday, source told me that there was a meeting between Biden administration officials really on those crucial immigration issues, including operational issues. Now, I want to note that this meeting was scheduled before the latest drop of migrants here in DC on Thursday.

But still, of course, that is something that is likely to come up. And of course, separately, we know that department of justice officials and Department of Homeland Security officials have been discussing what litigation options. So you're right, no yet public coordination, or at least announcement of coordination on this front. Certainly there are discussions happening in the building behind me. Boris.

SANCHEZ: Jasmine Wright from the White House, please let us know when they put out a public plan for what they are thinking of doing. Jasmine Wright, thanks so much.

For more on the political implications of this move, let's bring in Daniel Lippman. He's a White House reporter for POLITICO. And Daniel, always appreciate you being up bright and early for us.

Ron DeSantis, governor of Florida says that he's trying to be helpful to these migrants. But there's also a political calculation here, isn't there?

DANIEL LIPPMAN, WHITE HOUSE REPORTER, POLITICO: Yes, this is happening now one and a half months before the election. And that's not an accident. You sees how Republican hopes of winning back the House and the Senate have been dimmed in recent months by some of the weaker political candidates out there, like the Dr. Oz's and Herschel Walker's of the world.

And so this is a tactic to bring immigration back to the forefront reminds me of the Donald Trump tactics when he was president in 2018, of talking about the migrant caravans right for the midterms as well.

SANCHEZ: Yes. Notably, though a lot of DeSantis's constituents in Florida are people like these Venezuelans who have fled oppressive Marxist regimes. It doesn't seem like he fears that there's going to be blowback from Venezuelan or Cuban American voters.

LIPPMAN: Yes, I think he's looking to really kind of continue his culture war antics. And you know, he's used that on anything that's hot button issues. He wants to say to his future Republican primary voters in 2024. He and Greg Abbott, who has also done this tactic that, hey, we're tough on immigration.

We don't care if we're going to lose some of those Hispanic voters, because we can kind of double down on this on immigration being all in and that's -- this takes place as Republicans actually get more Hispanic voters to vote for them. And so but, you know, a lot of those people who are legal Hispanic voters, they are kind of skeptical when people use an illegal path.

And of course, everyone's sympathetic towards people fleeing Venezuela, but they're saying, hey, look at these blue states, migrants want, you know, social services, they want jobs, they want to feel welcomed. But of course, if they're being misled to go to Martha's Vineyard, where many of them have even heard of that island, then of course, that's troubling for many people.

SANCHEZ: Yes. And so we just heard from Jasmine talking about the meetings happening at the White House, the conversations being had by Department of Justice and others about how to counter this. What have you heard about what Democrats are willing to do to take a stand against these Republican governors?

LIPPMAN: Well, they're going to -- the Department of Justice is going to look to see whether the migrants were being misled, whether they were being promised a jobs, you know, whether they were able to kind of sign where they were going properly in languages they could understand.


But there's very little the White House can do because, you know, we have interstate commerce, interstate planes, you now, that are taking place. It's not like Massachusetts can say no planes from Florida. And so that's why it's interesting that DeSantis talked about this tactic to Republican donors a week before -- a few days before it happened. And so it kind of shows that he had political considerations on his mind.

SANCHEZ: Yes, this was something that he had planned out.


SANCHEZ: Taking a step back, though, Congress hasn't passed comprehensive immigration reform since the 1980s of the last time a widespread bill was looked at was about 10 years ago, and that failed catastrophically even Republicans that wrote it, we're running away from it.

Is there anything on the horizon in your mind that would have lawmakers actually pass something to address this issue in a wide sense?

LIPPMAN: Nothing that is imminent. I think Democrats, if they keep control of the House and the Senate, they might revisit immigration reform next year or the next time they're in power. They feel like they took -- they tackled climate change. They still want to return to you know, the child tax credit, paid family leave, and immigration, that's another of those issues that they really want to address, but not at the expense of igniting a big political firestorm.

You know, and as inequality continues in this country to get worse, in many cases, Democrats, they don't want to lose those working class voters that are pretty hawkish on immigration, in some cases.

SANCHEZ: Plenty to get to for both parties on the agenda, depending on who gets control of Congress. I just want to let our viewers know we're going to have Republican congresswoman Victoria Spartz on later to talk about this issue. She's on an immigration subcommittee. Daniel Lippman, always appreciate the time. Thanks again.

LIPPMAN: Thank you, Boris. SANCHEZ: Of course.

WILD: The Justice Department is asking an appeals court to pause parts of an order relating to the review of documents seized from Mar-a- Lago. The DOJ is taking issue with two elements of the judge's rulings. So this is a complicated story. Just explain it. Clearly. It's just two major things at issue right now.

And the first is the judge telling the Justice Department to stop the criminal investigation until a special master weighs in. And the second thing that the DOJ is taking issue with is the judge's direction that they provide certain documents to the Trump team. CNN's Jessica Schneider has more on the appeal filed last night she explains all of this.


JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT (on camera): The Justice Department filing their appeal with the 11th Circuit, but in doing it, they're actually asking for just limited relief. They're telling the court, they want really just two things that Judge Eileen Cannon refused to give them when she ruled on Thursday night.

First, they want to be allowed to continue their criminal investigation into classified documents unimpeded. That means they want to resume using those 100 classified documents that Judge Cannon has said they can no longer use, whether it's in Grand Jury proceedings or with witnesses. So they want to finally be able to use that. They're asking the 11th Circuit for that.

Plus, DOJ is saying that they shouldn't have to turn over that classified material to Trump's legal team, or even a special master who's been appointed for this review. They're saying that the lower court judge was just wrong to order the disclosure of some of this highly sensitive material in the midst of this ongoing investigation.

And on a broader scale on this filing, DOJ is really saying that courts shouldn't be stepping in on this issue. Because all of the documents at issue here they say belong to the government. They write this saying allowing the government to use and review the records bearing classification markings for criminal investigative purposes would not cause any cognizable injury to plaintiff that's being Donald Trump.

Plaintiff has no property or other legal interest in those records. Plaintiff has identified no cognizable harm for merely allowing criminal investigators to continue to review and use this same subset of the seized records. They continue to say, that is why courts have exercised great caution before interfering through civil actions with criminal investigations or cases.

So the DOJ in that last sentence in particular, really criticizing the lower court judge for even stepping in here. Now we'll see how quickly the 11th Circuit acts. It will likely be a panel of three judges, notably six of the 11 judges on the 11th circuit are Trump appointees. And then the master, a special master review of documents that is just beginning. In fact, Judge Raymond Dearie who has been named a special master, he has scheduled a hearing for Tuesday at 2:00 p.m. to go over how scheduling will work. Since of course the clock is already ticking there, the judge has said he asked to review 11,000 of those documents by November 30th. Jessica Schneider, CNN, Washington.



SANCHEZ: Jessica, thank you so much for that. Officials in London are urging people not to travel to see Queen Elizabeth lie in state. These are live pictures out of London where mourners are warned to expect to wait in line for more than 24 hours for a moment with the queen. We're going to take you there next.

Plus, President Biden's warning to Russian President Vladimir Putin as the war in Ukraine rages on. Stay with New Day. We're back in moment.


SANCHEZ: So listen to this, right now in London, officials are warning people to expect to wait in line at least 16 hours to pay their respects to Queen Elizabeth and that queue time is actually an improvement from earlier this morning when the wait time hit 24 hours.

WILD: At one point yesterday, the line of mourners outside Westminster Hall stretched 10 miles long. Officials had to close the line over and over because it just kept hitting the limit on, you know, the number of people they could have in the queue.


CNN international reporter Nada Bashir is among this massive crowd. And Nada, I mean, the line for the queen is like the great equalizer, right. There's David Beckham. He was in line. There are, you know, people with small kids in line. I just wonder why are people compelled to wait so long for just a brief moment with a monarch?

NADA BASHIR, CNN INTERNATIONAL REPORTER: Look, this is a moment of history that many people here have told us they simply couldn't miss being a part of. And as you can see behind me, the line is sneaking through, it's moving quite quickly and quite steadily now.

But as you mentioned there overnight, there was a bit of a standstill. They were advising people not to travel into central parts of London to try and join the queue simply because the queue had reached capacity. Too many people are attempting to join that queue. We are expecting to see a surge in numbers later today.

It is the weekend, of course and that lying in (INAUDIBLE) period will end on early Monday morning. But the people we've been speaking to here have been quite upbeat, despite the quite chilly and cold weather this morning. And you're not allowed to bring very big bags with you. So people are

a little low on supplies, I have to say but there are volunteers, hundreds of stewards dotted around helping people. We've been speaking to some of those who have been waiting in the queue overnight. We're doing better than now. What time did you arrive to join this queue?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We arrived at one 1:00, 1:00 this morning.

BASHIR: This morning.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You know, we've traveled down from Workshire (ph) and Midlands.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We left about nine half nine from home two and a half hour train. And we joined here at 1:15.

BASHIR: And why was it so important for you to do this?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Her Majesty's been serving this country without my certification. And it was, you know, our wish to pay our last respects to her for the dedication and the service that she's given to this country for over 70 years.

BASHIR: And very quickly, how have you been coping getting on in the cold?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It has been -- it's been very hard.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's been very cold, very cold last night.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Very bitter. And I think through the night it was from, I don't know --


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: About 4:00 it got really cold. And daughters that were with us also losing motivation. But when sunset was the sunrise was rising about 6:00, you know, it's getting upbeat. Actually, the people around us the people we met were also really lovely. We've met a lot of people, made friends. And I think that's also been, you know, it's been really nice experience and we want to be part of it.

BASHIR: Wonderful. Well, good luck with the rest of the queue.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you very much.

BASHIR: And it's not just people here that on queue. Of course, as you mentioned that we've seen celebrities, David Beckham and foreign dignitaries now of course, sending in London in preparation for that funeral Monday in just the next hour or so. We are expecting the Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau to also pay his respects to the Queen who's lying in state in Westminster Hall. WILD: Nada Bashir, thank you. OK, so let's discuss all of this with our loyal watcher, Hilary Fordwich. Good morning to you, Hilary. So my first question is, I think Americans might be surprised at, you know, the idea that someone would wait 24 hours for just a moment with the monarch.

And, and you and I were discussing earlier, that there might be a little bit of a nuance that the most American public doesn't quite understand it. And the point you make is that she really did work for the people. So can you explain that and in what way, she, you know, she really garnered their loyalty and their love.

HILARY FORDWICH, ROYAL WATCHER: Absolutely. And Whitney and Boris, good to be here, because I'm so glad you're covering that aspect of it, too. And might I say, when you look at everybody in that line, it is just a magnificent mosaic of mankind from every single nation. Why? Why are they there? And why are they doing it?

You hear so often people saying, she devoted herself 70 years, the sense of duty, even things like we don't hear every day. She would be cutting ribbons in old people's home. She will be going to little local schools, the stories that you hear from the average person that she touched, she touched 1/3 of the nation. So one in three people had seen her or she had been somewhere to where they live.

And this isn't just British people there. This is people from across the Commonwealth, and indeed the world who weren't commanded to be there. They wanted to be here because of those sentiments of admiring her duty, her dedication to everybody, everybody, regardless of their background, their race, their color. I think it's wonderful to see those people also in the line.

SANCHEZ: Yes, she lives obviously a lasting impression on millions and millions of people, if not billions. We're expecting a very elaborate, goodbye --


SANCHEZ: -- in Monday, walk us through what you're expecting to see.

FORDWICH: Right. Well, this is going to be the first state funeral since Winston Churchill's in 1965. So it's different than Princess Diana's funeral. That will be the closest probably that most people have seen Diana, Princess of Wales. That was though a special funeral for a special person.

One of the little interesting parts we're going to see is we're going to see her coffin will be moved on to or gun carriage and it will be pulled by members of the Navy sailors.


Why? Because Queen Victoria's funeral actually was a disaster. And the horses, they were ready and was a freezing cold morning. And when the coffin was on, and they were supposed to move, they buckled and they wouldn't move, and they wouldn't move, and they wouldn't move. And finally they got them to move. But they read and all the chassis is broke.

Meanwhile, the Navy came in, and these naval men, they, they put up all the harnesses, and they dragged the coffin. That's why we're going to see that of course, there's a little bit of Robair between the artillery that kind of failed then and the Navy, obviously, like we still have today.

So you're going to see different things like that. We are going to see there are five, about 500 heads of state, including, of course, President Biden has gone. The dignitaries are going to be shifted in what they're calling pods, actually buses, can you imagine the Emperor of Japan is going to be on a bus with other global leaders and monarchs from around the world are going to be on buses.

Now President Biden will be in The Beast going there and they will be going to Westminster Abbey, it is the first time that a British monarch has had their service in Westminster Abbey. Why they usually want there. It's because of the vast amount of people that are going to be in attendance.

One of the nightmares they're having, of course, is who do you sit next to who because although these plans operation, London Bridge have been in place for decades, obviously, nuances of political shiftings mean that it's a little bit more sensitive than it was even a little while ago.

SANCHEZ: All sorts of considerations --


SANCHEZ: -- and quite the history lesson two about the Calvary and the rub between --

FORDWICH: The artillery and the Navy.

SANCHEZ: Yes, yes, yes. Hilary Fordwich, appreciate your time. Look forward to more of the coverage on Monday.

FORDWICH: Pleasure.

SANCHEZ: Thanks much. So the Russians may have been chased out of some areas of Ukraine, but what they left behind is nothing less than atrocious. Up next, we're going to show you some grim discoveries found in Ukraine.



WILD: President Biden is warning Vladimir Putin about escalating fighting any further in Ukraine, saying plainly in an interview with "60 Minutes", that there will be consequences if Putin decides to use chemical or nuclear weapons.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Don't. It will change the face of war unlike anything since World War II.


WILD: Biden declined to give any specifics about possible retaliation, but he did say that Russia would become more of a pariah than ever before.

SANCHEZ: And as Russians are retreating, more of their atrocities are being unearthed in the recently liberated Ukrainian town of Izium.

WILD: That's right. More than 400 civilians, including children were found in mass burial sites. The Ukrainian government says that there were signs of torture on their bodies. CNN's Nick Paton Walsh joins us now. I mean, Nick, it's just horrific what they found.

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL SECURITY EDITOR: Yes, I mean, it's important to point out that when we saw this site yesterday, not all of those graves had indeed been exhumed. So investigations are still ongoing, yet still already at this early stage, Ukrainian officials very clear, very clear in what they want to tell the world, thus, they believe -- I mean, families there killed in an airstrike, soldiers that they said seem to have their hands tied and may have been shot at close range.

The investigations -- when we spoke to police and the investigators there still ongoing, and questions still to be answered about when these people died, and indeed exactly which side buried them. But still, a horrific scene, and it's part of the general picture of the horrors Ukraine is finding as Russia flees areas Ukraine is re-taking. And here's what we saw.


WALSH (voice-over): Here is where the horror gets names and numbers. Russia's unprovoked invasion killed many we knew, but only now in liberated cities like Izium are we finding out who and how? And even this rain cannot erase the smell of how death haunts these pines. It's important to point out that this was a military position.

These are tank positions around the city, presumably for the Russians when they occupied it -- burying these bodies where their troops would lay to rest and defend the city. Ukrainian officials have said over 400 bodies were buried here, even children, all showing signs of a violent death.

Through the day, they have been exhuming dozens of bodies. Most individual graves numbered and orderly. One bearing a number as high as 398. But this, we are told, and can smell and see, is a mass grave where 17 dead were found, a policeman here told us. Ukrainian officials said bodies found included a family killed in an airstrike, Ukrainian soldiers shot with their hands bound and bodies showing signs of torture.

(on camera): Some of the graves are marked just by a number and others have -- someone's full history. Zolatalev Alexei Vanazevich(ph) who looks like he died aged 82, buried here. (voice-over): This investigator tells us what he found in this spot.

"Here are civilian bodies and military ones further along", he said. "Over 20 have been examined here and will be sent for further investigation." It seemed to be the horrid extension of the long-term cemetery nearby. Wreath, coffins, candles.

Some people knew who they were burying -- others. Next to this invader's camp site, likely not. Madosda(ph) said, the Russians first hit the graveyard with an airstrike, and then moved in.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): We tried not to go out because it was scary, where they brought their special machines, they dug some trenches for their vehicles. We only heard how they were destroying the forest. When they left, I don't know if there was fighting or not, we just heard a lot of heavy trucks one night a week ago.

WALSH: We saw multiple refrigerated lorries leaving town. But we were asked not to film the content of this one. Part of where the history of Russia's brutal occupation will be written and nothing can wash this site clean.


WALSH: Now, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy keen to draw comparisons between this site and the horrifying scenes that were likely war crimes when Russian troops withdrew from an outskirt of Kyiv around Bucha, as I should say. Investigators do seem to still be going through the work of finding out exactly the full picture of what's happened there.

But still the United States, United Nations, European Union joining in condemnation of what Ukrainian officials are finding as Russia pulls back. Russia's President Vladimir Putin, well, he may have thought he might have got a friendly audience as he met the quieter, perhaps, nations during the Ukrainian war at a conference in Uzbekistan.

Instead, he had India essentially say the war needed to stop now, and himself said that he didn't see any need to change the pace of the conflict, saying what will happen in the end, let's see. So, a defiant Moscow despite essentially, the horrors of what it's done to Ukraine. Those deaths there, ultimately, Moscow is responsible for no matter how the circumstances around them played out. Russia increasingly, if not -- if that was possible, isolated. Back to you.

WILD: Nick Paton Walsh. Thank you. Up next, shocking testimony in the Alex Jones trial. A witness says he knowingly lied about the Sandy Hook massacre to get more viewers online. That's coming up after a quick break.


[06:40:00] SANCHEZ: It is the end of week one in the latest civil damages trial against conservative talk-show host Alex Jones. Soon, a jury in Connecticut is going to decide how much money he and his company are going to have to pay the families of Sandy Hook victims for lying about the 2012 school massacre.

WILD: The jury heard testimony from a woman who works for Alex Jones, who admitted that false statements were made about that shooting for the purpose of getting more viewers and getting more money. CNN's Brynn Gingras has that story.


BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Yes, it was an emotional start to this trial in Connecticut where we heard from an FBI agent as well as at least one family member of those Newtown families who lost loved ones in that horrific massacre school shooting back in 2012.

Now, most of this trial so far this week was really listening to Brittany Paz on the stand. She spent more than 15 hours over the last few days, she is the company's spokesperson for Free Speech Systems, which is the company owned by Alex Jones. And the plaintiff's attorneys basically brought her on to the stand to kind of debunk many of the theories that Alex Jones has sort of put out there.

Whether it'd be talking about the fact that the massacre was a hoax in general to the fact that they never used Google Analytics as a company to the fact that some of the parents and the kids who were killed were crisis actors. I want you to take a listen to an exchange that happened this week between the plaintiff's attorney and Miss Paz.




PAZ: No, Free Speech Systems doesn't contend that he is.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is Arbil Richmond(ph) an actor?

PAZ: No.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dylan Hawkly(ph) an actor?

PAZ: No.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is Daniel Barton(ph) an actor? .

PAZ: No.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is Emily Parker(ph) an actor?

PAZ: No. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is Spiel Openberg(ph) an actor?

PAZ: No.


GINGRAS: And so you can see right there, it was such an emotional moment in the courtroom where the camera panned to some of the families that were sitting there. And our courtroom reporter Erin Cooper says that they were crying, and that tissues had been handed out really all throughout this trial this emotional week.


But again, the plaintiff's attorney there debunking this theory that Alex Jones keeps bringing up that this Newtown massacre was a hoax, using videos, using spreadsheets, using a number of means to make that point with this specific person's testimony. Now, she is going to, again, be back on the stand next week when court gets started.

But then after that, eventually, we should be hearing Alex Jones himself on the stand when the defense gets their turn up. But this trial is expected to last several weeks. And, again, remember, this jury is deciding how much money in damages these eight families along with an FBI agent should receive from Alex Jones for all of these lies that were spread about what happened in Newtown, Connecticut. Back to you.


WILD: Here with us now to discuss this further is CNN legal analyst and criminal defense attorney, Joey Jackson. So Joey, my first question for you is how do the plaintiff's attorneys actually go about showing that these families were materially damaged directly because of what Jones said? How does the jury put a dollar amount on the damage?

JOEY JACKSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes, Whitney, good morning to you. I think they are starting that process. The first way you do it is through the opening statements by showing that lies have consequences. We're talking about an event that occurred 10 years ago or will be 10 years in December where people died. Children died. Twenty, in fact.

And then you had additionally, educators who died on top of that. Several. And this was not a hoax, it was not a lie. They were not actors by the government or anything else. And so why am I saying that? I'm saying that because that resignate or resonates, excuse me, into the fact that this was materially false statements that were being made over and over, that really translated into damages.

Impairing reputation, really opening up emotional wounds and really leading to harassment of people. And so, first, when you get through that part, Whitney, with respect to conveying to the jury what this was all about, which the jurors certainly will know based upon the witness testimony, then you get to the impact that it had. And then the jury has to translate that into how should we compensate

these families? How should we, as we look there at the damages, the jury deciding how much Alex Jones and his company should pay the 15 plaintiffs which represent eight victims, et cetera.

But ultimately, what the jury has to do is quantify in their own way how the families were impaired and what the specific monetary measures should be to compensate for their impairment based upon the -- really lies that were told and the profits that were made by the company of Alex Jones as a result.

WILD: Joey, this is the second of three trials. The first trial in Texas resulted in a nearly $50 million judgment against Alex Jones. And so, I'm wondering if you think that this trial will result in the same way? I mean, did he -- after he saw the result of the Texas case, could he have said, OK, clearly, this is not going in my direction and I'm just going to settle with these people. How do you expect all of this to play out, and do you anticipate he might just settle the third case?

JACKSON: So, what happens is that, what we have to distinguish, Whitney, here, is of course, liability from damages. He, in fact, already has been found responsible. That's the liability part. But he didn't -- wasn't found responsible based upon any jury trial. He and his team decided not to cooperate, not to transfer and hand over critical information that the families would need in order to really move forward in the case.

As a result of that, this is a default. A default is, for example, two teams are scheduled to, you know, play with each other, for example. One doesn't show up. One wins by default, right? Far different. Nothing about a gain here. But just making the point that this is a default based upon him not engaging. And so, his strategy, to your question, has been not to engage.

This portion of the trial is about damages. You've already lost. You've already been determined liable by default. Now, it's about how much you will pay. I don't suspect any settlement based upon the fact that he's been trying to really engage in bankruptcy filings and dilatory tactics and not otherwise cooperating.

And so, a settlement would mean that he would have to agree to pay a specific monetary amount. His play here based upon not engaging at all has been to avoid the situation, and try through bankruptcy and other measures, not to be accountable. So, I don't suspect there will be settlement here, nor do I suspect there'll be a settlement in the case that's to come thereafter.

WILD: All right, Joey Jackson, thank you. We'll be right back.

JACKSON: Thank you.


[06:50:00] SANCHEZ: Time now for a look at this week's difference maker. Coy Wire joins us now with an inspirational story about one of the greatest NFL receivers of all time. Good morning, Coy.

COY WIRE, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, good morning to you, Boris. He's only a second behind the great Jerry Rice. Larry Fitzgerald's work on and off the field inspired by his mom Carol who passed away from breast cancer in 2003. A major part of that comes through his work in the community. The future hall-of-famer told me that when it comes to excellence at anything in life, the journey is where the magic happens.


WIRE: What was the secret to your success?

LARRY FITZGERALD JR., FORMER AMERICAN FOOTBALL WIDE RECEIVER: You've got to be able to work at it. You've got to fall in love with the process of getting better. I wanted to do it the right way every single day, leading by example, something -- those are -- those are important aspects.

WIRE: One of the things I love about you is you're always thinking about others, and you're always giving back. And I know you're doing some pretty special things, the Larry Fitzgerald Foundation.

FITZGERALD JR.: It's important to be able to give back and utilize the platform that you have. My mom was in the non-for-profit world when I was a child. I always really enjoyed going and being a part of all the things she did in the HIV and AIDS community and the breast cancer.


And when my mom passed away from breast cancer in 2003, you know, I knew that I wanted to make sure I was not only just making contributions with my capital, but also with my heart, and using the platform in a positive way.

WIRE: Do you have a specific kid or a moment that really touched your heart and moved you?

FITZGERALD JR.: Oh, yes, it's a lot. I mean, you go and you work with the organizations and you just see the light in some of these kids, you know, coming from -- you know, a mom and in and out of, you know, homeless shelters, and you know, just so much adversity, but the child has so much charisma and energy and enthusiasm about life.

And you can just look in their eyes at times and say that, this young lady, she's going to be special. You know, you want to be a violinist, you want to be an actor, you want to be a doctor, all of those things are capable and at your fingertips if you look forward and you want to do the work. So we want to bring that into kids' hand, it's something that we really focus hard on.

(END VIDEO CLIP) WIRE: One of the most kind, caring and humble superstars you will ever

meet. The Larry Fitzgerald Foundation builds up women, under privileged and underrepresented communities, and of course, lifts up families who have been affected by breast cancer. Larry is on a mission, can't wait to see him go into the hall of fame in a few short years

SANCHEZ: No chance he comes back? A lot of rumors about him maybe going to Tampa?

WIRE: He hasn't officially retired.

SANCHEZ: Right --

WIRE: So, we could say he has that podcast with Tom Brady. You may be onto something, Boris.

SANCHEZ: Coy Wire, thanks so much. Always good to see you.

WILD: Serena said the same thing.

SANCHEZ: That's true --

WILD: Tom Brady starting trend.

SANCHEZ: Open-ended, yes, thanks, Coy. So right now, thousands of people are waiting for their turn to pay respects to Queen Elizabeth. We're going to take you live to London for a line that stretches and stretches and stretches for hours, right after the break.