updated 7/20/2005 7:51:24 AM ET 2005-07-20T11:51:24

Guest: Wendy Long, Heather Gerken, Dane Ciolino, Bob Heales, Chris Warner, Dave Holloway, Mary Ann Morgan, Dana Cole, Mike Collett-White

DAN ABRAMS, HOST:  Coming up, President Bush makes his pick for the Supreme Court.  He‘ll announce it in just three hours from now.  Many claim to know who it is. 


ABRAMS (voice-over):  The focus on this federal appeals court judge, Edith Brown Clement, but she hasn‘t ruled on cases involving hot button topics like abortion or church and state.  So would that help or hurt?

And convicted sex offender Joseph Duncan back in court, charged with gruesome murders and kidnapping.  Little Shasta Groene lucky to be alive after he allegedly sexually molested her repeatedly.  Now authorities in Minnesota believe Duncan may have been connected to the disappearance of another missing little girl. 

Plus searchers looking for Natalee Holloway in Aruba turn to a medium who says she can communicate with the dead.  We‘ll talk with her and with Natalee‘s father. 

The program about justice starts now.


ABRAMS:  Hi everyone.  Fist up on the docket tonight, three hours from now, President Bush will announce his first nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court, a replacement for Sandra Day O‘Connor.  Rumors are swirling but the name that seems to have been leaked to just about everyone is Fifth Circuit judge, Edith Brown Clement, a 57-year-old judge who many say fits into the same legal mold as Justice O‘Connor, a woman with conservative credentials, President Bush‘s father put her on the federal bench in ‘91. 

She served on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans since 2001.  Clement is considered a bit more moderate than some of the other possibilities and since she hasn‘t had the opportunity to rule on some of the hot-button issues like abortion and religious freedom, she‘s considered a bit of a wild card.

“My Take”—I don‘t buy that it‘s going to be Clement.  No one seems to have a real good source on this and yet, everyone seems to have it.  And I‘m guessing, again this is just a speculation, that someone‘s leaking this maybe as a diversion and again, that‘s what it is.  I don‘t know.  Guess.  But I think she‘s not conservative enough or predictable enough for this administration. 

Joining me now with the latest from the White House, NBC White House correspondent Kelly O‘Donnell.  Kelly, look, you know more about this.  You‘re talking to the people there.  I just don‘t buy that they‘re going to appoint Clement.  What is the word over there? 

KELLY O‘DONNELL, NBC WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT:  Well, Dan, it‘s interesting.  If air time, newsprint and media speculation were sufficient, you‘d think Judge Clement would be donning the robe of the United States Supreme Court tonight because her name has been prominent in the last few hours, but certain sources we‘ve talked to her here have encouraged us to be very, very cautious about what seems to be a runaway train with the Clement name. 

The president has done interviews; he‘s completed that process.  We know his announcement is coming, but the true people in the know has been a very, very tight group including the vice president, the chief of staff Andy Card, of course, the person who sort of chaired the search committee.  That would be Harriet Miers, the counsel to the president, a very small group of people. 

Is it a diversion?  We‘ll have to see in a few hours but we‘ve certainly been getting some indications from sources who have at least familiarity with the process that there should be real hesitation to let the Clement name go too far.  So that‘s sort of where things stand.

She has been interviewed.  She has been on the at least published short list.  The president and the White House have never acknowledged a specific list of names, although the president has kidded with reporters both today and yesterday, trying to say that no one in the Press Corp knew what his plans were.  But he also spoke more seriously about the mainstream values he‘s looking for in whomever his choice will be. 


GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  I do have an obligation to think about people from different backgrounds but who share the same philosophy, people who will not legislate from the bench.  That‘s what I told the people when I ran for president. 


O‘DONNELL:  And Dan, your thought about Judge Clement perhaps not having enough of a written record, there are people who say that could be an issue.  On the one hand, it might make her confirmation go more smoothly because if she were the choice or frankly any nominee, the more paper there is to follow, the more opportunities to question, to criticize during the confirmation process. 

Those who are familiar with what will go forward once we all know the name, the candidate, the nominee will go to the Senate, will meet behind closed doors with some of the senators on the Judiciary Committee, there‘ll be a wave of introductions and that can happen over the course of the next few days and of course the Senate goes on its recess at the end of next week, so...


O‘DONNELL:  ... the White House has hoped to get all of that introductory stuff done and then the president goes to Crawford and everyone will be debating his choice. 

ABRAMS:  All right.  I‘ll talk with the panel in a minute about—I don‘t.... I‘m going to play this tape of myself tomorrow when I get this wrong.  I predict it will not be Clement.  All right, I‘ll play...

O‘DONNELL:  You‘re on the record.

ABRAMS:  ... I‘ll play it tomorrow when I get it wrong.  All right.  Kelly, real quick though, the nominee, whoever it‘s going to be, is going to be there with the president, right? 


ABRAMS:  So without giving away media secrets, I mean aren‘t the people kind of following around the perspective nominees and trying to see where they are?

O‘DONNELL:  There are cameras poised at every corner of the White House property, looking for the potential candidates, looking for family members...


O‘DONNELL:  ... who are dressed up...

ABRAMS:  How about the van behind you?  There‘s a white van driving behind you.  Any chance that the person is locked up in the white van?  No...

O‘DONNELL:  I‘ll throw myself...

ABRAMS:  Yes.  Kelly O‘Donnell, great to see you again Kelly. 

O‘DONNELL:  Thanks Dan.

ABRAMS:  Joining us now three Supreme Court watchers, Wendy Long of the Conservative Judicial Confirmation Network, a former clerk to Justice Thomas; Harvard Law professor Heather Gerken, a former clerk to Justice Souter; and Loyola Law professor Dane Ciolino, who has appeared before Judge Clement in court among other—many other judges. 

All right.  Wendy Long, I don‘t—I know that you probably wouldn‘t be happy with Clement, right?

WENDY LONG, FORMER CLERK TO JUSTICE THOMAS:  I think we‘ll be happy with whoever the president picks and one thing that‘s clear is the president is doing the picking. 

ABRAMS:  You‘ll be happy with whoever it is, so no matter who the president -- do you have any insight because you guys sometimes have an inside track.  Do you have an inside track here?

LONG:  We‘re like you, Dan, we‘re following all the rumors and I think the first ones to know will probably be the key senators and I hear they‘re going to find out unfortunately after you go off the air, shortly after 7:00. 

ABRAMS:  All right.  Well I‘ll be on at 7:00 again, so Heather Gerken, it just seems to me that the Souter factor is going to come into play here.  I mean judge—Justice Souter is viewed by conservatives as one of the all-time worst choices ever made to the Supreme Court, made by the president‘s father and the reason was because he didn‘t have much of a record on certain hot-button issues.  I think they‘d be too scared to appoint someone like Clement. 

HEATHER GERKEN, FORMER CLERK TO JUSTICE SOUTER:  Well that‘s certainly been the thought up until now that—and especially with this president, seems to be aching for a fight on judicial nominees.  I have to say though it‘s very hard to predict what judges are going to do on the Supreme Court.  They‘re not confined by presidents, the way they are in lower courts, and it‘s hard to tell what they do as they evolve as justices over the 10 or 15 years that they serve.

ABRAMS:  But when you‘ve written—I mean you know look, if there is a more—like if Judge Ludwig (ph) Judge Jones is selected, they‘re on the record not just saying as Judge Clement has.  In the past, Judge Clement has said well look if the law of the land abortion—the abortion ruling as a result it stands.  They have gone on the record and basically said that they think that Roe v. Wade, for example, is wrong, correct? 

GERKEN:  That‘s right.  I mean Judge Clement is actually fairly moderate compared to some of what are called true believers by law professors.  That is they‘re very ideological right-wing nominees that the president has been considering thus far.  So Judge Clement would be I think a welcome surprise to the liberals. 

ABRAMS:  Yes, I got to tell you, I think if Judge Clement is the judge who‘s selected here, I think that the Democrats should probably be thrilled.  Dane Ciolino, you‘ve argued in front of Judge Clement.  What do you make of her?

DANE CIOLINO, LOYOLA LAW SCHOOL:  Well from a standpoint of her judicial demeanor, very courteous to litigants, very well read, very well prepared, a no-nonsense judge, one who doesn‘t tolerate incompetence among lawyers before her.  But is not an abrasive or acoustic federal district judge, as many of us have been before, so from that standpoint, a very nice person.

As far as her judicial philosophy, again, I think that‘s an open question.  We here in New Orleans and in the Fifth Circuit understand that she is a very law and order type of conservative judge.  She‘s got a long paper trail on law and order and criminal justice-type issues, which is not surprising because that‘s the...

ABRAMS:  Right.

CIOLINO:  ... meat and potatoes of what a federal judge does. 

ABRAMS:  Right, but law and order issues are not that controversial.  Meaning, they are far less controversial when you have a judge who‘s tough when it comes to law and order issues, you‘re going to have the vast majority of the American public on your side.  It gets a lot more divisive when you come to some of these other hot-button issue

CIOLINO:  Well that‘s true today.  I mean but if you look back into the late ‘60‘s and early ‘70‘s...


CIOLINO:  ... President Nixon making his appointments, that was a very—that was a hot button issue.  But you‘re absolutely right.  As it comes to the really controversial issues of the day, abortion, and church and state issues, very little from Judge Clement on those...


CIOLINO:  ... sorts of topics. 

ABRAMS:  And look, you know what got me is the fact that everyone—all the different networks are all reporting that we‘re hearing, it was as if someone through out a trial balloon to just see how it would go or to divert attention from other people.  Wendy Long, let me play you this piece of sound from Laura Bush, the president‘s wife.  Want to ask you what you think about the First Lady‘s comments.


LAURA BUSH, FIRST LADY:  Sure, I would really like for him to name another woman, but and I admire and respect Sandra Day O‘Connor so much.  She‘s been a friend that I‘ve loved seeing whenever I had the chance when I‘m in Washington.  But I know that my husband will pick somebody who has a lot of integrity and strength and whether it‘s a woman or a man, of course I have no idea.


ABRAMS:  Wendy Long, how much influence do you think that the First lady had on this decision? 

LONG:  I have no idea but the key was the second half of what she said, which is he‘ll pick somebody with integrity and strength.  And you know, who knows whether gender, race, we don‘t know anything about that.  And the key is—I mean—and back to Judge Clement for a second—I mean she has joined a number of rulings that were very strong on federalism issues.  And if you look back at her Senate testimony, when she was before the Senate for the Fifth Circuit, it‘s clear that she is the kind of nominee that the president promised who understands the restrained role of the federal judiciary. 

ABRAMS:  Very quickly, Professor Gerken, Edith Jones, the other Edith from the Fifth Circuit, considered more conservative than Clement, at least on the record.

GERKEN:  She‘s much more conservative than Clement, at least on the record.  Clement is much more easily confirmed than Judge Edith Jones, who has a much stronger record on some of these issues including abortion. 

ABRAMS:  Yes.  All right, we shall see, but you heard me predict—I said the minute I heard everyone saying it at the same time, and yet, no one had a real great source on it, I said, you know what, I don‘t buy it.  We‘ll see.

Wendy Long, Heather Gerken, Dane Ciolino, thanks a lot.  Stay tuned to MSNBC all night long, full coverage of President Bush‘s choice for the U.S.  Supreme Court and of course at 9:00 p.m. Eastern time, this is the place to be.  Where else would you want to be?  NBC News.  I‘ll be there.  Everyone will be there, 9:00, live from the White House. 

Coming up, Joseph Duncan back in court today, charged with gruesome murders and kidnapping, soon to be charged with killing Dylan Groene, kidnapping his sister, sexually molesting her, but his blog could tie him to another missing girl.  We‘ll talk to her father and with the private eye who has been searching for her. 

And as investigators searching for Natalee Holloway wait for the DNA results from four pieces of blond and brown hair found on duct tape, where else would they turn but to a medium.  A woman who says Natalee talks to her.  She‘s going to join us along with Natalee‘s father. 

Plus director Roman Polanski still won‘t come back to the U.S., where he‘s wanted for raping a 13-year-old girl.  He actually pled guilty.  Now he has the nerve to sue “Vanity Fair” for libel in England.  He gets to testify via videophone from France. 

Your e-mails abramsreport@msnbc.com.  Please include your name and where you‘re writing from.  I respond at the end of the show.


ABRAMS:  Convicted sex offender Joseph Duncan accused of kidnapping and molesting 8-year-old Shasta, 9-year-old Dylan Groene.  He‘s been charged with killing three others.  Now his blogs could link him to the disappearance of a 5-year-old girl back in 2003.  Leanna Warner‘s father spent the day searching for his daughter today in the Minnesota woods.  He‘s going to join us in a minute.  But first we expect federal kidnapping charges to be filed against Duncan in the coming days relating to Shasta and Dylan‘s ordeal. 

According to Shasta, she was in her bed on May 15 when her mother woke up, took her to the living room.  Duncan was waiting.  Here‘s what Shasta told police happened next.


DETECTIVE:  This man forced her, her brother, and the rest of her family into ligatures where they were secured.  Shasta described subsequently thereafter being carried from the home by Mr. Duncan, as well as her brother.  Shasta describes being taken to a remote campsite in the mountains above St. Regis, Montana. 

During their approximate six-week stay in the mountains, they visited at least two different campsites.  Shasta described during her stay at the campsites her and her brother both repeatedly being sexually molested during their stay with Mr. Duncan at the campsite.


ABRAMS:  Shasta was found alive after being spotted with Duncan near her home more than six weeks after she disappeared.  Days later, Dylan‘s remains were found.  About 700 people gathered to mourn Dylan‘s death recently, but the story doesn‘t end there.  Duncan‘s blogs raise suspicion he could be involved in 5-year-old Leanna Warner‘s disappearance more than two years ago.

On January 4, 2004, he wrote this.  Just found out that a 5-year-old girl went missing from Chisholm, Minnesota.  On June 14, 2003, I didn‘t even know until today that this happened, so I tried to figure out what I was doing that day since I‘m always afraid of getting accused when something like this happens.

June 14, Duncan was reportedly living in Fargo, North Dakota.  That same day, 5-year-old Leanna Warner disappeared from her neighborhood in Chisholm, Minnesota more than 200 miles away.  So the question of course is what is the connection? 

Joining me now is Leanna Warner‘s father, Chris Warner, private investigator Bob Heales, who has been working with the Warner family since last year to help find Leanna.  Thank you both very much for coming on the program.  Appreciate it. 


ABRAMS:  Mr. Heales, let me start with you.  What do you think that the evidence is?  Why do you think there might be a connection between Duncan and Leanna‘s case? 

BOB HEALES, WARNER FAMILY PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR:  We don‘t know if there is a connection.  It‘s only a possibility at this time.  It‘s something we don‘t want to rule out but I think there‘s other possibilities as well. 

ABRAMS:  Is there other evidence apart from the fact that he‘s discussing it in his blog? 

HEALES:  I believe that it‘s been determined he was in Crosby, Minnesota and Grand Rapids, Minnesota the week prior and possibly in the Duluth area the week after.  And of course Chisholm is pretty much in between those areas. 

ABRAMS:  Mr. Warner, is this something new in terms of the investigation? 

Meaning, have you heard about Duncan before the Shasta Groene case? 

CHRIS WARNER, DAUGHTER MISSING SINCE 2003:  No.  We weren‘t aware of Joseph Duncan at all.  All the way until, you know I had received a phone call saying THAT he had mentioned her in his blog.  We had never questioned him or anything in this case. 

ABRAMS:  Tell me about the efforts, the search that‘s been going on for you for the last year and a half, two years. 

WARNER:  Well, you know we—I made a comment, you know a statement when Leanna first went missing that we weren‘t going to stop searching for her.  And it‘s an everyday thing, whether you‘re physically out there looking in the woods or you know maybe it‘s looking on the Internet or just, you know, everywhere you go, it‘s a constant effort. 

ABRAMS:  Tell me a little about your daughter, if you would. 

WARNER:  Well, she‘s a very energetic little girl, very friendly with people.  You know my wife and I had long conversations about that because she was so friendly.  She‘s just outgoing and happy. 

ABRAMS:  And how old would she be now? 

WARNER:  She‘d be 7 now. 

ABRAMS:  And are the authorities, as far as you know, in Minnesota actively trying to link Duncan to the disappearance of your daughter? 

WARNER:  Yes, very much so.  Right now what they‘re trying to establish is a timeline of course to be able to put him in this area or even put him in or out of this area, depending on where he was.  I know that the FBI, as well as the Bureau Criminal Apprehension and the Idaho state police are all working together on this. 

ABRAMS:  Tell me how she—what happened when she disappeared. 

WARNER:  Well, she just went—she has a group of friends that she goes to se every day and they had just gotten back from the lake and they pulled up to the house and Leanna said that she wanted to go see her friends and she just walked down the block and we‘ve never seen her since. 

ABRAMS:  So it was literally, you know you‘re talking about yards down the block? 

WARNER:  Yes, it‘s just a matter of—I mean to go around the block is no more than a 50-yard walk from my house to where she was going. 

ABRAMS:  Mr. Heales, have you got any leads except for this?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Well we have—well we‘ve had several leads.  We‘ve had over 1,400 leads in this case; of course none of them have really gone anywhere other than you know this one.  This one (UNINTELLIGIBLE) don‘t have any answers, but we get little things that come in here and there.  People that kind of remember things that happened a couple of years ago and they, you know, the local law enforcement stuff, they check that out the best that they can but it‘s hard when it‘s, you know, a couple of years old. 

ABRAMS:  Yes.  All right.  Well look, good luck to both of you.  We‘re going to—we‘ve been trying to put up the numbers as much as we can throughout this, so if anyone knows anything, they can call the numbers on the screen, 1-888-3BEANER.  Beaner was her nickname, right? 

WARNER:  Yes.  Correct. 

ABRAMS:  Yes or 218-262-8999.  That‘s the other number.  If you‘ve got any information...


ABRAMS:  ... please give a call.  Let us know, gentleman, if there‘s anything else we can do in terms of leads or helping to publicize this. 

WARNER:  Thank you.

HEALES:  Thank you very much. 

ABRAMS:  Thank you. 

All right.  Now to the latest out of Aruba.  Police waiting for DNA test results on what could be the first piece of real evidence in the investigation into Alabama teen Natalee Holloway‘s disappearance.  A piece of duct tape and four blond and brown hairs found on a rocky beach over the weekend.  A park ranger collecting trash in the area came across the duct tape.  He says initially he dismissed it as a piece of garbage, but quickly realized it might be something more. 


MARIO RASMEAN, FOUND DUCT TAPE WITH HAIR:  I pick it up to throw it away but I saw some hair on it and I said, no, this is not just duct tape.  It‘s something more.  I didn‘t think about the missing girl but I think about crimes at the same time and that put me to call the police. 


ABRAMS:  Test results are expected within days.  Joining me now once again, NBC‘s Michelle Kosinski.  So Michelle, do we have any better sense of exactly when those test results will come back? 

MICHELLE KOSINSKI, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT:  Well we‘re told within a week, but talking to the FBI today they said it had not yet reached Quantico.  That‘s where the FBI lab is.  So a week is right now the amount of time they‘re giving us. 

We also know that more FBI agents other than the one that was remaining here are now on the island and they just met with Beth Holloway, Natalee‘s mother.  So there is some further investigation going on.  We don‘t know for sure at this point if it‘s directly related to that find, because keep in mind until testing is done, we don‘t know if it‘s connected to this case or not.  Also, because of this...

ABRAMS:  Sorry to interrupt you...

KOSINSKI:  ... duct tape and the hair...

ABRAMS:  ... let me just ask you one quick question. 

KOSINSKI:  Go ahead.

ABRAMS:  You said it was going to Quantico. 


ABRAMS:  It‘s not going...


ABRAMS:  ... to Holland as the Aruban—since you know Aruba is a Dutch territory.  The Dutch authorities are not going to be testing it?  It‘s going to be tested by the United States authorities? 

KOSINSKI:  It will be tested by the Dutch in Holland and we‘ve been told that these samples, whatever they have been able to gather, has been split between the FBI and the Dutch authorities. 


KOSINSKI:  The Dutch are really—because they are over this island, they are really considered the lead investigation team but this incident, we know that those samples of the hair were sent to Quantico as well.  That kind of lends you some insight into how the investigation is going.  That they are obviously being split and the FBI still is playing a role in the investigation.

ABRAMS:  All right.  Michelle Kosinski thanks very much.  Appreciate it. 

Coming up, police, the FBI, volunteers, not the only ones looking for Natalee Holloway.  They‘ve called in a medium, says she communicates with the dead and says she‘s in communication with Natalee.  We‘ll talk with her and with Natalee‘s father. 

Plus, director Roman Polanski testifies in a British court via satellite from France.  He‘s suing a magazine but he‘s wanted in the U.S. for raping a 13-year-old girl.  He sues New England because he likes their liable laws but can‘t go there because he‘d be extradited so he gets to testify via videophone.  Come on.

Remember stay tuned to MSNBC all night long for full coverage of President Bush‘s choice for the United States Supreme Court, 9:00 p.m. Eastern time is the announcement.  We‘ll have it live.  Stay tuned.


ABRAMS:  Coming up, Natalee Holloway‘s family reaches out to a medium to try and find their missing daughter.  She joins us next and Natalee‘s father as well.  Back in the states after more than a month in Aruba, first the headlines.



DAVE HOLLOWAY, NATALEE HOLLOWAY‘S FATHER:  I just want to meet with him face-to-face and ask him face-to-face, if he‘s innocent, I want him to tell me face-to-face. 


ABRAMS:  Natalee Holloway‘s father, Dave, talking about the meeting he‘d like to have with Dutch teen Joran Van Der Sloot, the only suspect in connection with his daughter‘s disappearance, still in police custody.  Natalee now missing for over seven weeks since the early morning hours of May 30. 

Joining me now is Dave Holloway.  Dave, thanks for coming on the program.  Appreciate it.  So you spent about a month in Aruba.  How hard was it for you to leave? 

HOLLOWAY:  Well, it was something I had to do just for my family‘s sake and to refresh.  We—I‘ve been there a total of 43 days and it just got down to the point where you‘ve become unproductive and you know it‘s time to come home, get refreshed and go back. 

ABRAMS:  So you do intend to go back? 

HOLLOWAY:  Yes.  The Texas EquuSearch people are going back next Thursday and I plan to go back with them. 

ABRAMS:  All right.  Let me ask you about this meeting that you had with Paul Van Der Sloot, the father of Joran.  Paul himself was in custody for a while.  What did you say to him? 

HOLLOWAY:  Well actually I had two meetings.  One prior to his entrance into the prison and then a subsequent follow-up after he spoke with Joran and in the second meeting, I asked him what his involvement was in the case. 

ABRAMS:  And what did he say? 

HOLLOWAY:  Well, we went over about seven or eight different points and he commented that all of them were a negative answer.  That his involvement, his son‘s involvement and the Kalpoe brothers‘ involvement was that they didn‘t do anything wrong and that the last known whereabouts was the beach area north of the Marriott where he left Natalee alone.  And I was trying to get answers to determine you know the details, why he left her alone, what condition was she in, you know, some minor details that the police investigation has not shared with us. 

ABRAMS:  And did he provide you with those answers? 

HOLLOWAY:  No, he did not. 

ABRAMS:  Did you trust him? 

HOLLOWAY:  Well the verdict‘s out on that.  I still have the same feeling that I‘ve always had all along that he knows more than what he‘s telling everyone and there at the end, I felt like that through a lot of questioning, that we may have hit on something.  And he became emotional and about that time, he wanted to conclude the conversation so we departed. 

ABRAMS:  Now you have said that his last words were you‘ve got to understand, this is my son and I‘ll do anything for my son.  Did you take that to mean something? 

HOLLOWAY:  Well, I did.  It just got down to the point where I told Paul, I said look, you know my daughter is missing and that‘s the worst thing we could have.  We either need, you know, find her alive or if she‘s not alive, then you know we need—you know we need some sort of closure.  And I told him, I said if something accidentally happened, you know, I‘m a forgiving person and at that point in time, he became emotional and indicated that he could understand my position but as a father, he‘ll have to do anything he can for his son and that I was not going to visit with him. 

ABRAMS:  And did he say anything about Joran‘s conflicting statements to the police? 

HOLLOWAY:  He did.  He felt like that youth had a lot to do with it and the fact that he left his—left Natalee at the beach, that he—you know the parents and everyone else would be angry with him for doing that and that was the reason they made up the story in the first place.  Why, I just don‘t buy it. 

ABRAMS:  You don‘t buy that story? 


ABRAMS:  How would he know about the Kalpoe brothers?  I mean basically, it‘s his contention that look the Kalpoe brothers were with Joran.  Joran was the last one to see her so the Kalpoe brothers couldn‘t have had any involvement?

HOLLOWAY:  He said they do not have any involvement, but you know it still comes back to the same old question, is why would you ask two of your friends to lie for you and why would you come up with a lie anyway.  It just doesn‘t make sense. 

ABRAMS:  Dave, if you could stay with us for a moment.  As Dave mentioned, he had a lengthy meeting on Saturday with the parents of Joran Van Der Sloot—there‘s the video of it—outside the prison.  He remains in custody.

Now joining me is someone else who was there at that spontaneous meeting.  You see her there.  Mary Ann Morgan, a medium invited to the island to help find Natalee.  Thanks a lot for taking the time to come on the program.  Appreciate it.


ABRAMS:  All right.  So explain to us what your role has been and what you can tell us about what you have seen, heard or you know. 

MORGAN:  What my role is, is that I‘m a medium and I‘m a search tool just like the divers or the dogs or the searchers, the ground searchers for EquuSearch and I help the team.  It‘s all about being a team, whether it‘s with EquuSearch or the detectives that I work with on other cases.

ABRAMS:  Now have you been able to contact Natalee?

MORGAN:  Actually, Natalee contacted me several weeks ago and I spoke to her briefly in the middle of the night and then I asked her if she could come back in the morning because I was really tired and she came back in the morning and she gave me seven pages of detailed notes and from those, she gave a message to her father, a message to her mother, details about how, when, why, what and where everything happened and that‘s what I took with me to Aruba and what happened was I have a friend that works at Texas EquuSearch, who is Jody Manning (ph), and I called her and said Jody (ph), I know you‘re probably getting lots of calls and I‘m really busy right now but let me just tell you what I got from Natalee because Jody (ph) knows what I do...

ABRAMS:  Right.

MORGAN:  ... and she said you need to go to Aruba and help these people.

ABRAMS:  If she gave you seven pages of detailed notes, why haven‘t we been able to find her? 

MORGAN:  Because maybe she‘s unfindable. 

ABRAMS:  (UNINTELLIGIBLE) and what does that mean? 

MORGAN:  Well, I believe that there were several things that happened, several stages of this disappearance, and I shared that with all the authorities and they‘re using that to help them. 

ABRAMS:  And do you think that the information that you provided will ultimately lead them to finding Natalee? 

MORGAN:  I think it will assist them in finding her. 

ABRAMS:  And because you are a medium, I believe that means that you contact—that you can sort of communicate with those who are no longer with us.  Does that mean that Natalee, according to what you have seen, is dead? 

MORGAN:  I would assume so, however, I like to hold on to the belief that maybe I‘m talking to one of my guides and one of my guides that is sharing stuff with me, but because of some of the information I was provided, obscure information about family members and family events, it leads me to believe that Natalee is crossed over but we never cease to exit. 

We live on through eternity.  Death is an illusion that we deal with here in this really.  And so when Natalee crossed over, she‘s like in the movie “Ghost”.  She is stuck right now because somebody imposed upon her free will. 

ABRAMS:  What did you make of the meeting?  I mean you were there.  We saw the video of you there at the meeting between Mr. Holloway and Paul Van Der Sloot.  What did you make of that meeting?

MORGAN:  Oh, you know, Dave really wants to speak to Joran and I believe that it‘s his right as a father because this is the last known individual to see her—to have seen her alive and Dave is a wonderful human being and like he said, he knows where one daughter was.  He showed Paul Van Der Sloot a picture.

He said I know where this daughter is, but unfortunately, I haven‘t seen my other daughter since her graduation.  And being there at that moment of time, that was one of the most powerful statements I‘ve ever heard a human being make.  Your heart just—my heart went out to him.  I had compassion in my soul for this man that is missing this child...


MORGAN:  ... and as a parent, it moved me.  I try not to get involved within cases that I‘m working on.  I try to remain objective as opposed to subjected but this family is an incredibly wonderful family and this is very sad. 

ABRAMS:  I‘ve got to believe that‘s very difficult to stay detached...


ABRAMS:  ... from a family that has been this active in this search.  Dave, final question to you.  Have you—are you a believer?  I mean I guess this is a straight out question.  Do you believe, you know, because there are going to be skeptics out there who are going to say they don‘t believe in mediums, they don‘t believe in psychics.  Do you believe? 

HOLLOWAY:  I‘m a very open-minded individual.  Mary Ann was able to tell me some information or some obscure information about myself and my family that no one else would know.  So you know, you start out—I didn‘t know anything about all of this and then when someone tells you and even your producer and co-producer were told some information that is unbelievable.  So yes, you have to keep everything in an open mind and listen. 

ABRAMS:  Dave, good luck.  We‘ll, you know, we‘ll keep following it.  Mary Ann, thanks a lot for taking the time.  Appreciate it. 

MORGAN:  I enjoy your show. 

ABRAMS:  Thank you very much.


ABRAMS:  Coming up, he‘s a wanted man in the U.S..  He pled guilty to raping a 13-year-old girl.  He fled before he could be sentenced.  Now filmmaker Roman Polanski has the gall to sue a magazine for libel.  He likes the English libel laws, but you see he doesn‘t like the fact that he could get extradited to the U.S. if he goes there.  So he gets to testify via videophone.  It‘s coming up.


ABRAMS:  Coming up, filmmaker Roman Polanski, a wanted man in the U.S. for raping a young girl, now he‘s suing a magazine in England and yet he won‘t go there because he knows he‘ll be sent back to the U.S.  It‘s coming up.


ABRAMS:  It‘s sometimes forgotten that Oscar winning director Roman Polanski is a fugitive from the law.  He pled guilty to statutory rape for having sex with a 13-year-old girl at Jack Nicholson‘s house in 1977.  Then he fled before he could be sentenced, moved to France, a country that won‘t extradite him. 

But Polanski still wants to use the law to his advantage.  He‘s back in a courtroom, sort of.  This week he‘s suing “Vanity Fair” magazine for liable in England, the country known for its liberal liable laws.  I say he‘s sort of there because he‘s making history as the first person to testify by videophone in a British courtroom. 

See, if he were to show up in person to pursue his case, he would likely be extradited to the U.S.  The L.A. D.A.‘s office hasn‘t forgotten about the charges that he drugged and raped a teenage girl.

“My Take” - this whole case is an outrage.  Polanski says “Vanity Fair” falsely reported that he made a pass at a woman at a restaurant right after his wife, Sharon Tate, was brutally murdered by the Manson family.  OK, I don‘t know.  But what I do know is that it‘s absurd that he gets to testify via videophone from France in a civil suit so that justice won‘t be meaded (ph) out here in the United States. 

Joining me now on the phone from London is “Reuters‘” reporter, Mike Collett-White, who was in the courtroom today and Los Angeles defense attorney Dana Cole. 

All right.  Dana—Mike, before I get to the details of what‘s been happening in court—legally, Dana, what is going on here?  I mean is this not craziness, the fact that he gets to testify via videophone so he can win money from a magazine so that he won‘t be extradited to the U.S.



ABRAMS:  That question didn‘t quite make sense but the fact that he gets to testify via videophone because he‘s wanted here in the U.S. in an effort to sue a magazine for money. 

COLE:  I don‘t know why you‘re getting so exercised over this, Dan.  You know, it‘s interesting in the—I mean you call it a rape case but actually he pled guilty to unlawful sex with a minor, which is a much lesser charge...

ABRAMS:  Statutory rape. 

COLE:  In a sense that‘s what that is. 

ABRAMS:  I thought...


ABRAMS:  I thought sex with a minor is called statutory rape. 

COLE:  It can be, but because the minor here was 13 years old, technically, it was a child molestation that...

ABRAMS:  Oh, so that‘s the reason it‘s OK.  I guess I didn‘t get that part, Dana, was the fact...


ABRAMS:  ... that oh she was 13 and not like 8.

COLE:  Here‘s the point I‘m trying to make.  What‘s interesting is this young girl and her family sued Roman Polanski in California court and at that time, there was—it was fought and an appellate court decision in California came down saying he could defend the case from France.  He did not have to appear in the state of California. 

So it seems to me if it was all right for the authorities here in California to have him defend a case...

ABRAMS:  Wait...

COLE:  ... that was directly related to this situation, that it certainly would be OK for him to have an unrelated case in London, England...

ABRAMS:  I think it‘s just the opposite...

COLE:  ... which he‘s defending by telephone. 

ABRAMS:  I would say it‘s just the opposite.  That—all right, so you want to give him a chance to defend himself in the context of this case via the phone or whatever, fine.  But the idea that the British make these special, special accommodations so that he doesn‘t have to actually show up there because they know what will happen to him, is he‘ll actually have to face justice.  So instead, he gets to testify via videophone from France in an effort to get money from a magazine.  That‘s not warped to you?

COLE:  Well apparently some judge in London, England looked at all the...


COLE:  ... and felt that that was all right, so you know...

ABRAMS:  I know.  That doesn‘t bother you?

COLE:  ... if they‘re not complaining, why should we? 

ABRAMS:  I‘m complaining.  I‘ve been claiming about this case for—this really drives me nuts, is the fact that, you know, the bottom line is he was going to be sentenced and he fled justice and I feel like he‘s getting special justice because of who he is.  But let me just focus...


ABRAMS:  Go ahead.  Final thought, Dana, go ahead.

COLE:  I was just going to say, that‘s not entirely correct.  He did spend 42 days in custody during a psychiatric evaluation so it‘s not as if he got off scot-free...

ABRAMS:  He...

COLE:  ... plus I‘m sure he paid a fairly substantial...

ABRAMS:  ... left...

COLE:  ... settlement to this family.  One last thing. 


COLE:  The victim in the case here in California forgives him. 

ABRAMS:  Yes.  No that I know.

COLE:  She has no problem with him...

ABRAMS:  But...

COLE:  ... and would like the warrant recalled and would like this case fully resolved. 

ABRAMS:  As you know, it‘s not the victim versus Roman Polanski.  It‘s the state of California v. Roman Polanski and the last time I checked in our legal system, people don‘t get to sort of decide when they leave and then get to sort of try and deal with it later on.  But let me talk about...

COLE:  That‘s true.

ABRAMS:  Let‘s talk about the lawsuit.  I‘m not going to sort of bring Mike Collett-White into the underground that I‘ve been digging here.  So Mike, tell me about the lawsuit.  What‘s going on?  Roman Polanski is basically saying that “Vanity Fair” falsely published this story about him.  How does it seem the case is going?


Well it‘s been fascinating because of the legal precedent, which you referred to.  I mean it‘s a far from perfect reproduction of a trial.  I mean it is a virtual trial in some ways.  So basically, you know, the thrust of the argument of “Vanity Fair” is that liable is all about defaming someone, ruining someone‘s reputation. 

And they have tried very hard to set out an argument saying that Polanski never had a reputation in the first place because of the crime that you mentioned and various other, well misdemeanors, some may say including sexual promiscuity, which he admits.  They also are trying to undermine his case by questioning his memory of events, you know, that happened over 30 years ago, which obviously means that his memory of these events is incomplete.

ABRAMS:  Right.  Well Mike, let‘s just be clear.  Is “Vanity Fair”—

“Vanity Fair” is not conceding, are they, that the story is false?

COLLETT-WHITE:  Well it‘s interesting because there is a point of information in the story that both sides now concede as false.  That point being that the article alleges that Roman Polanski made a pass at this so-called Swedish beauty in Elaine‘s restaurant in New York while on his way from London to Sharon Tate‘s funeral in Los Angeles. 

Now they have proved—Polanski has proved via plane tickets and such documentation that that‘s not in fact the case.  And so “Vanity Fair” has conceded that point, but they are saying the thrust...


COLLETT-WHITE:  ... the gist of the article is still correct.  That he did this within three or four weeks...


COLLETT-WHITE:  ... the death of his wife. 

ABRAMS:  Got it.  All right.  Look, bottom line is for me, it just still remains absolutely insane that he gets to testify via videophone so that he doesn‘t get to actually face American justice, but we‘ll follow it.  Mike Collett-White, thanks a lot for coming on the program.  Dana Cole, as always, great to see you.

COLE:  Good to see you Dan.

ABRAMS:  Coming up, Karl Rove, did he break the law?  You guys have a lot of thoughts about it.  Coming up. 


ABRAMS:  I‘ve had my say, now it‘s time for “Your Rebuttal”.  Last night we debated whether Karl Rove committed a crime when he spoke to “TIME” magazine journalist Matthew Cooper.  I said the real legal issue is whether Rove knew CIA officer Valerie Plame was covert and that he had to have done it intentionally, tried to reveal that fact.  Based on Cooper‘s account, I predicted no one would be charged. 

Tom W. Licht, “Your focus was on the simple information that was related to Cooper by Rove.  That‘s it.  Your conclusion, don‘t expect much.  You forgot to mention that for two years Rove and the White House said they were not involved, which we now find out is a lie and therefore a cover-up.  Where was your mention of that?  No legal matters for you to tackle in that?”  Actually, no not really, Thomas.  It‘s really a political question.  Not a legal one. 

Don in Monument Beach, Massachusetts, “I don‘t see any requirement the leaker has to have knowledge of the agent‘s status as to the covertness.”  Maybe not, Don, but since the statute says covert, I think that may be a tough argument to win. 

From Louisville, Kentucky, Will Clark.  “Even if Karl Rove, which I feel is innocent of these charges, said anything remotely directing the journalist to Ms. Plame, I feel that it is poor judgment to write the story.”

Oh, so it‘s not the fault of the leaker, who has access to the information, Will.  It‘s the media‘s fault?  Judy Miller from “The New York Times” is to blame even though she never wrote a story about it?  She‘s sitting in prison? 

Your e-mails abramsreport—one word -- @msnbc.com.  We go through them at the end of the show. 

When we come back, I am going to play “HARDBALL”. 


ABRAMS:  That does it for now.  Make sure to stay tuned to MSNBC 9:00 p.m.  Eastern time, live coverage of the president‘s announcement of his Supreme Court nomination.  Make sure you stay tuned, but coming up now, let‘s play “HARDBALL”. 



Content and programming copyright 2005 MSNBC.  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.  Transcription Copyright 2005 Voxant, Inc. ALL RIGHTS  RESERVED. No license is granted to the user of this material other than for research. User may not reproduce or redistribute the material except for user‘s personal or internal use and, in such case, only one copy may be printed, nor shall user use any material for commercial purposes or in any fashion that may infringe upon MSNBC and Voxant, Inc.‘s copyright or other proprietary rights or interests in the material. This is not a legal transcript for purposes of litigation.

The Abrams Report each weeknight at 6 p.m. ET


Discussion comments