updated 7/29/2005 1:10:18 PM ET 2005-07-29T17:10:18

Guests: Jamie Stonier, Casey Jordan, Mary Fulginiti, Bill Stanton, T.J. Ward, Joe Huston, Jossy Mansur

JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST:  Now, tonight‘s top headline:  The frantic search for Natalee picks up steam, as cops search a swamp and a landfill. 

Welcome to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY, no passport required, only common sense allowed. 

The draining of the swamp continues, and the DNA results are in tonight.  We are live in Aruba with all the latest. 

Plus, exclusive video of a new search being conducted at a landfill after a new witness comes forward. 

Then, also exclusive, another cruise passenger comes forward and tells SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY about the night newlywed George Smith vanishes.  What could have happened to him, and could four strangers know the answers?  We‘ll find out tonight. 

Plus, he tried to pay $70,000 to have a hit man kill his wife, telling him to rip the $20,000 ring off her dead finger.  Now he‘s behind bars and she is here live tonight in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY to save other women from her hell.  

ANNOUNCER:  From the press room, to the courtroom, to the halls of Congress, Joe Scarborough has seen it all.  Welcome to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.

SCARBOROUGH:  Good evening. 

Now, tonight, we have an exclusive in the case of missing newlywed George Smith IV.  He disappeared, of course, while he was on a honeymoon cruise in the Mediterranean.  That turned into a bloody honeymoon.  Tonight, you are going to be hearing from a passenger who was on the cruise the night the young newlywed vanished and what she saw in the moments before and after his blood stain appeared on the ship.  She is going to give us the inside story. 

But first, there‘s a flurry of activity and a flurry of news coming out of Aruba tonight.  We have all been waiting for the results of the DNA tests on those four strands of hair that were found on the duct tape.  Tonight, we have answers, all this as investigators continue to drain a swamp near where Natalee was last seen.

And, also, of course, a search, a new search going in at a landfill based on more testimony from a new witness.  Let‘s go live to Aruba right now for all the information. 

NBC‘s Michelle Kosinski is here and has the latest developments. 

Michelle, tell us what you got tonight. 

MICHELLE KOSINSKI, NBC CORRESPONDENT:  Well, right now, we are seeing the water levels dropping in this flooded field.  The draining of this area is expected to be finished by midday tomorrow.

And, you know, there is some disappointment out here tonight for people.  They find out that those blonde hairs on duct tape were not in any way connected to Natalee Holloway.  That means, still, there‘s been no sign of her on this island, and searchers are now going to have to rely on new leads—Joe. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Well, so, talk about what‘s going on.

Again, obviously, if the strands of hair are not Natalee‘s, obviously, that adds an intensity to the search while they are draining the swamp and also the landfill.  Talk about the landfill search.  What‘s going on there? 

KOSINSKI:  Well, this is the first time we have seen this.  Today, searchers go to that landfill, and they go there with a witness. 

And this person claims that, three days after Natalee disappeared, he was in this landfill disposing of some things, about 4:35, 5:00 in the evening.  He says sees a white pickup truck pull up from a little distance and he says he sees some men take out what looked to him to be a body and then bury it in a particular location.  Well, today, he took searchers out to that location.

But, by now, after nearly two months, it‘s covered by two to three meters of garbage.  So, searchers do, though, plan to be back out there tomorrow, as well as some other areas where they are using some new high-tech equipment that they just brought back to this island. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Does the family consider these DNA developments to be positive or negative?  You know, Michelle, it‘s always so difficult when you talk about the family, you talk about the mom and the dad, where, of course, if the blonde hair comes back and it matches their daughter, well, maybe they have closure, but they also may have a daughter who passed away. 

How did they take this new evidence regarding the DNA findings, and does it just mean, again, that the draining of the swamp and the search of the landfill is all that more urgent, all that more important? 

KOSINSKI:  Right. 

Remember, when this duct tape and blonde hair was found in this park, a national park, where there are a lot of surfers, people in that area, people on boats nearby, things wash up on to the shore.  People are out there all the time.  So, there was always that possible unlikelihood that it would be connected to Natalee.

So, to get this news, they are taking it in stride, and they see all of this other activity going on in different locations all over this island.  So, that is giving them much encouragement, especially since two of these locations now, this field and the landfill, are based on new witness statements that apparently police are putting some credibility in, at least for the moment. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And the family is excited with the quickening of the

pace of this investigation, I would assume 

KOSINSKI:  Absolutely.  In fact, when we talk to Beth Holloway a few days ago, she described these developments as huge, something that they have been waiting for, for so long, for witnesses to finally come out of the woodwork, whether they come forward on their own or they are found by these private investigators, somebody who is willing to talk, who is willing to put aside any fears and say, I saw something happen, and for police to actually act on those tips. 

And we are seeing them act on these in a very big way. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right.  Thanks so much, NBC‘s Michelle Kosinski.

And, of course, exclusive images you are looking at right now, while Michelle was talking, had to do with the search at the landfill.  We are going to stay at—we‘re going to stay with this story, obviously, tonight, there, again, the exclusive video.  That is of the search that‘s being conducted on the landfill, based on new information that authorities got in Aruba. 

We are going to go back to Michelle Kosinski throughout the hour.  Obviously, we have been watching that swamp drain for three days now.  It‘s taking a lot longer.  We are going to find out why later on in the show, when we go back and speak with Michelle.

But, right now, let‘s turn to Jossy Mansur. He‘s the editor of “Diario,” the largest newspaper in Aruba. 

Thank you so much for being with us tonight. 

I understand you have information from police reports that talk about how Joran tried to blame one of the brothers for raping and murdering Natalee Holloway.  Can you tell us about that information, about that so-called confession by Mr. van der Sloot? 

JOSSY MANSUR, EDITOR, “DIARIO”:  Sure.  It‘s not a so-called confession.  It was a confession given by Joran to four present policemen, two of them what we call (INAUDIBLE).  They are a little bit higher officers.  And two that we consider (INAUDIBLE).  That means that they work for the detective department.  They‘re into investigation. 

Now, to these four people that have signed that deposition, Joran told that, I think—these are his exact words, I mean, the exact translation of what he said.  He said, “I think that Deepak Kalpoe raped and then murdered Natalee.”

SCARBOROUGH:  So, Joran fingered his friend Deepak, saying that they actually—that he actually went on the beach, raped Natalee and then killed her.  And that‘s what he told the police.  Why haven‘t the police...

MANSUR:  That‘s what he said.  He said...

SCARBOROUGH:  Why haven‘t the police responded in a more aggressive way?  Do they think that Joran was lying to them? 

MANSUR:  Probably, because the guy has been lying so much.  He has lied on at least 20 to 22 occasions.

But so have the other two Kalpoe brothers, no?  They lied that they were—that they left Joran over there at the beach with Natalee, then that they went home, which is not true, because, at least Deepak, according to Joran‘s confession, was on the beach with him at 2:00 a.m. on the 30th of May, that she disappeared. 

SCARBOROUGH:  I will tell you.  That is—again, it‘s an amazing confession, again, Joran saying that one of the Kalpoe brothers went back to the beach, raped and killed Natalee. 

I‘m curious, are you hearing anything from the police, anything from the investigators regarding these boys?  Is there any chance that they are going to crack and turn on each other and keep their story consistent against one another? 

MANSUR:  Well, I think they have been turning against each other. 

I know that, on another occasion, that they confronted the two Kalpoe brothers with Joran, in the presence of many police officers, that they really yelled at each other and went at each other‘s throat and told different stories, and accused each other of many other things. 

We have no—no proof, definite proof, documented proof, like we have of the 13th of June confession by Joran.  But this seems to have happened in those interrogations there. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And I will tell you what.  It‘s shocking information. 

Mr. Mansur, thank you so much for being with us tonight.  We greatly appreciate your insights. 

Now, friends, that‘s not something that you are hearing.  I mean, we just haven‘t seen that reported aggressively in the United States, that Joran van der Sloot, the main suspect in this case, actually said that one of the Kalpoe brothers went back to the beach—after he left her on the beach, went back to the beach, raped Natalee, and then killed her. 

I just think—again, I—it‘s remarkable how these investigations take place in Aruba.  It‘s remarkable how there‘s no transparency down there, that we have to hear second- or third-hand what‘s going on, what‘s happening, and what somebody who was there the night that Natalee disappeared is saying about one of the Kalpoe brothers. 

Now, as we reported, our exclusive video from Aruba showing volunteers from the EquuSearch team looking through a landfill with a new witness who is claiming it‘s where Natalee‘s body was left.  Could this landfill hold the awful truth about this case?   

Let‘s go live now to EquuSearch‘s Joe Huston and get the very latest on that search. 

Mr. Huston, thank you so much for being with us tonight. 

What can you tell us about EquuSearch‘s inspection of that landfill right now? 

JOE HUSTON, TEXAS EQUUSEARCH:  Yes, we were given information that Joran and the two Kalpoe brothers buried Natalee in one or two different spots in the landfill.  The information we received came from another source. 

We went out there and checked it out today.  We have two different spots we need to look at.  Some of the information the individual gave us turned out to be correct, from the standpoint of towels and other pass keys that were found in the same location.  And our intent tomorrow is to get a backhoe or a front-end loader in there and dig through the different areas and see if we can‘t find any evidence about what exactly happened to Natalee. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Mr. Huston, this is shocking news, also.  I will tell you what.  The dominoes really seem to be falling right now in Aruba.  What can you tell us about this witness, and why would a witness wait eight weeks, eight weeks, to tell us that he or she saw Natalee buried at this landfill? 

HUSTON:  It‘s my understanding that the witness is—was worried about what would happen to him if he told the truth or came up with the information.  And it‘s because of that...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  So, scared to tell the truth. 

(CROSSTALK)

HUSTON:  ... here.

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes, scared to tell the truth.  Why was she scared to tell the truth about this possible murder and burial at this landfill? 

HUSTON:  He didn‘t tell me at the time. 

SCARBOROUGH:  OK.  So, what—OK, so, it‘s a he.  Again, you can vouch for this person‘s credibility.  You believe that the story is credible.  And the other information that he has given you has been credible enough for you all to tear through this landfill, which I understand, again, since—since she may have been buried there could have accumulated another six, seven, eight feet of additional garbage.  How—isn‘t that like finding a pin in a haystack? 

HUSTON:  Not really.  We have enough information that there‘s a specific item close to where the body is supposed to be, which is large enough for us to be able to find. 

Remember the Lori Hacking case.  She was buried inside a mattress. 

And that‘s the only reason they found her.  We are looking for something.  I can‘t tell you what it is at this time.  But if—once we find that item, then we know we are in the right area.  If we don‘t the item, then we‘ll know that we are on another wild goose chase.  But we had enough of these leads since we‘ve been down here to try to follow up the ones that are credible and dismiss the other ones.  But this seems very credible to us at this time. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right, Joe, we are going to be staying with you all, obviously, not only throughout this hour, but throughout the rest of the week and through the weekend, however long it takes to get the very latest on the search at this landfill.

And, also, of course, we are going to be going back to Michelle Kosinski throughout the hour.  They have been draining a swamp in Aruba for three days now.  This is the third night they have been at it.  We‘re going to be going back to Michelle as they get to the bottom of that.  And, of course, when they get to the bottom of the swamp, they are going to bring the dogs in, try to do anything, as the desperate search to find Natalee Holloway continues late into the evening in Aruba. 

You are looking at a live picture of the swamp being drained right now. 

Now, next, we go inside the latest developments with a private investigator hired by Natalee‘s family, who can sort through all of this activity.

And, also tonight, another exclusive on the story baffling investigators from America to the Mediterranean.  You are going to be hearing from a passenger who was staying near this couple‘s cabin the night the groom disappeared, what she heard and what she saw.  And could it help break this case? 

And sleeping with the enemy, a woman whose husband caught on tape trying to hire a hit man to kill her comes into SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY to tell her horrifying story. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Fast-breaking developments out of Aruba tonight.  You are looking live at where crews continue to drain a swamp.  Also, they are looking through a landfill tonight based on some shocking new information. 

And later, nature‘s fury caught on tape.  We‘re going to show where this is happening when SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY returns.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  NBC‘s Michelle Kosinski at the Aruban swamp still being drained, we are going to be checking back with her in a few minutes.

But now, here to talk about the intense search for Natalee is her family‘s private investigator, T.J. Ward.

Mr. Ward, thank you so much for being back with us tonight. 

T.J. WARD, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR:  Thank you. 

SCARBOROUGH:  So many things happening in Aruba.  Please break it down for us.  You got the DNA evidence.  You got the swamp being drained, and we just heard from this EquuSearch guy that he said that they were searching, again, this landfill, that they found a towel, that they found a key pass. 

It sounds like a lot of things are going on here.  Please, if you can, for Americans that haven‘t been following this as closely, break down this investigation.  What‘s the state of it tonight? 

WARD:  Well, first of all, this is—this is the first I have heard about the EquuSearch‘s clue about going to the landfill.

But I would like to turn around and focus on the information at the pond that‘s being drained right now.  If we go back and we can believe the information from the gardener, who was there on the 29th into the 30th, who saw van der Sloot and the Kalpoe brothers in the vehicle belonging to Kalpoe, he specifically and without any reservation said that he saw van der Sloot behind the front wheel of the driver‘s seat, who covered his face when he pulled up on the car.

And he also saw one of the Kalpoe brothers bend down in the back seat.  Well, if we take this information into consideration, with the witness that we found, who also described the car to a T. a week later, who was circling through the racket club, we can take the information and not only compare that to the Marriott and the beach where the police keep taking van der Sloot out to the beach, which is right beside the Marriott, this pond is directly across the road. 

And the time frame at 2:00 in the morning until the time that they understand that they have information that one of the Kalpoe brothers was on his computer at 3:00, we are not—we‘re talking about a very short period of time.  Now, we also know about an implication of a letter from van der Sloot that was given to the police at the time of his—that he was taken into custody. 

And, if this is true, that he is claiming that the—that Deepak, in fact, killed Natalee on the beach, after raping her, then we don‘t have a far-fetched story here that the beach is right across the street from the pond, and maybe there‘s some evidence around the pond, because the same vehicle a week later, after the disappearance of Natalee, from the 29th into the 30th, might even coincide with the fact that they were going back to find any additional evidence. 

SCARBOROUGH:  You know, Mr.—I got to tell you, Mr. Ward, this is starting to sound a lot like the case out in California, where you have got Scott Peterson.  He sits there, and he is able to push off investigators, but soon evidence just starts dripping, drip by drip by drip.  Pretty soon, it washes that guy away.  He is going to face the electric chair sometime in his future. 

In this case, though, I am stunned by the new information we are finding out every night.  I mean, tonight, we find out that van der Sloot says that one of the Kalpoe brothers raped and killed Natalee on the beach, and yet we are not hearing about that in America.  We are not hearing—we are not hearing a lot of things.  And these kids aren‘t even in jail.  Why aren‘t they in jail, first of all?  And, secondly, why can‘t these Aruban authorities break a 17-year-old kid?  You give my kid like a PlayStation2 and a pile of chocolate chip cookies, and you got him talking in 30 minutes. 

WARD:  Well, this is a very streetwise kid, van der Sloot, very, very streetwise.  And he knows his father was in the judicial system, or is in the judicial system, up until yesterday, when he started cleaning out his drawer at the justice office. 

But he, in fact, I believed, called his father on the night and got advice what to do with Natalee Holloway.  I believe that we have all three of the suspects—these are the parties that are responsible for the disappearance of Natalee Holloway, and I would rest assure that probably you will understand that Paul van der Sloot is probably going to be linked to this investigation somewhere down the road. 

What the problem is with people here in the U.S. is that we are not used to this kind of procedure.  The procedure in Aruba is completely different than what we are used to in the U.S.  In a normal investigation that I have been doing for the last 24 years in the private sector, when I get a case like this, I am able to go to law enforcement and to the prosecutor‘s office and pull information that‘s public. 

And, of course, in Aruba, nothing is public.  You can‘t get reports.  You can‘t get information from the police.  And everything is hush-hush.  I believe that it was very much a mistake, and the Aruban government knows, to leave the Kalpoe boys, let them go back on the street.  But I rest assure, when the times comes, I believe the Aruban authorities, along with the FBI, monitoring this case, has the information, and when they do, they will take these parties back into custody. 

I believe you will probably also see a targeted investigation here in the very near future involved with Paul van der Sloot.  This is all pulling together.  After the information that we receive from whatever the pond gives us, whether they bring a sonar in and there‘s any evidence there, if not, I am returning Sunday on behalf of the family, and I will continue conducting the investigation I did under—covering this witness that knew about the car a week later.  There‘s people there, and somebody on that island has...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  You know, Mr. Ward, you‘re exactly..

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  You‘re exactly right, Mr. Ward.  This is all starting to add up.  This evidence, the draining of the swamp, the new witness...

WARD:  Exactly. 

SCARBOROUGH:  ... that you found, it‘s all coming together.  And I agree with you.  I think the Kalpoe brothers are going to get nailed on this, and I think Paul van der Sloot, he is going to be sharing a jail cell with his son. 

Thanks so much for being with us, Mr. Ward.  We greatly appreciate it. 

WARD:  Thank you very much, Joe.   

SCARBOROUGH:  And we want to get you back tomorrow.  I mean, it‘s great to have somebody that can tell us what‘s going on down there without the filter...

WARD:  You are very welcome.

SCARBOROUGH:  ... of the Aruban and Dutch authorities. 

Let‘s bring in right now Bill Stanton, former NYPD investigator. 

Mr. Stanton, you have been hearing all of this.  It sounds like the pace of this case is quickening.  What can you tell us about the ebb and flows of these sort of investigations? 

BILL STANTON, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR:  Well, it‘s interesting to see the private investigator, the different dynamic he brings to the table.  He seems to be doing a wonderful job of collecting evidence and presenting it to the law enforcement. 

But what seems to be happening is a mystery wrapped in a riddle.  And, Joe, what you have here, no one is directly saying, from what we are hearing, if it‘s credible, no one is directly say, I saw the Kalpoe brother kill Natalee.  No one is saying they saw Joran kill Natalee.  They are saying they think.

And this way, I think he is being coached, in my opinion, by the father.  I think the elder van der Sloot coached the son.  And everybody is pointing fingers at everyone else, but no one is saying they saw directly.  And that‘s going to be very hard for law enforcement to get a confession or to cut a deal.  What...

SCARBOROUGH:  But, Bill, -- but, Bill, again, I mean, you take, again I talked about Laci Peterson.  Scott Peterson sits there with this bland face in front of local newspapers, trying to cry as hard as he can, saying he misses his wife, Laci.  He goes to the Super Bowl.  Everybody says, we know he did it.  And, pretty soon, evidence starts coming again.  It starts dripping bit by bit in and gets him.

STANTON:  Yes.  But...

SCARBOROUGH:  I mean, it looks like the same thing may be happening in Aruba, doesn‘t it? 

STANTON:  Yes.

But, Joe, what‘s happening is, the waters are being muddied.  There‘s not one person.  There‘s actually three.  So, when everybody is pointing at everyone else and nobody is saying they saw it directly, who do you believe?  Who do you go to?  Do you cut the murderer a deal and say, listen, I will give you immunity to testify?  It becomes very, very hard in an incident like this.

Unless they were actually all together if and when this crime was committed, it‘s going to be very hard focusing in on one person...

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes. 

(CROSSTALK)

STANTON:  ... when we all think we know who actually did it. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And of course, the witnesses, I mean, we are hearing these new witnesses coming forward saying they saw the boys in the car shielding their faces at 3:00 in the morning.  Going to be very interesting. 

Bill, stay with us, because, when we come back, we want to turn to another big story, new details in the case of the missing groom George Smith, another SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY exclusive, a passenger who has some surprising, I would say shocking, details about what really happened that night. 

And later, a quiet afternoon, when suddenly this.  A twister comes out of nowhere, and the whole thing caught on tape. 

We will show it to you when SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY returns. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Take a look at this amazing video.  Night-vision cameras capture a huge volcano erupting.  We are going to be showing you more of it and where it happened. 

Also, we have got a big exclusive in the case of the missing newlywed. 

But, first, here‘s the latest news you and your family need to know. 

(NEWS BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  A simple exchange of money for service.  Only, the service was killing his wife.  Now he is behind bars, and his wife is here in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY to tell us the whole story and what she is still afraid of. 

Plus, nature‘s wrath caught on tape.  The volcano erupts, sending ash thousands of feet into the air.  And the cameraman on the ground shooting a surprise tornado in a place you would never expect, we will show you and tell you where. 

Welcome back to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY, those stories in just a few minutes.

But first, let‘s go back to Aruba and Michelle Kosinski. 

Still, three days later, pumping that swamp, draining that swamp, because they believe, based on witness testimony, that may be where Natalee was killed and buried.

But, Michelle, I understand tomorrow is a big day.  Set it up for us. 

KOSINSKI:  Well, not only will this wrap up, we are told.  Searchers will be out here, as well as in the landfill, a place that has never been searched and the national park.  They will be using things like methane gas detectors, ground-penetrating radar.  We will also see some movement in court, rulings on whether the DNA samples of these suspects should be tossed out because of procedural errors—Joe. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right, Michelle Kosinski, thanks a lot.  And stay with us, obviously, throughout the hour.  Any breaking information that comes down there, let us know.  We will go back to you immediately. 

KOSINSKI:  Thanks. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Thanks. 

First, explosive new details and another exclusive interview on the story that we have been bringing you about George Smith, the man who vanished from his honeymoon cruise on July 5, somewhere between Greece and Turkey in the Mediterranean. 

Now, we were the first to obtain this photo exclusively from a passenger.  And now experts say it may have blown the lid off of this story.  We invited Royal Caribbean to appear on our show tonight, and specifically asked them if the FBI boarded the ship in Turkey.  And their answer, very revealing. 

In an e-mail, they wrote to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.  They said: “Once we determined George Smith was missing, we immediately notified the FBI.  The FBI, American Consulate and Turkish authorities responded and began investigating Mr. Smith‘s disappearance immediately, while we were still in port.”

That is very revealing information, friends. 

Now to another SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY exclusive tonight.  She was a passenger on the cruise and she stayed a few doors down from George Smith.  She is a former Hollywood insider who has been writing about George Smith‘s disappearance in her blog, “Diary of the Hollywood Refuge.”  She agreed to join us on the condition of anonymity. 

For the purposes of this interview, we refer to her as H. 

Thank you so much for being with us tonight. 

Let me ask you the $64,000 question.  From—you were there.  From everything you witnessed on that ship, from everybody you talked to on that ship, from everybody you talked to since you have come home, what can you tell us about what happened the night George Smith disappeared and what happened the next morning in the investigation? 

“H,” PASSENGER ON CRUISE SHIP:  What I can tell you with great certainty is that there‘s a lot of confusion. 

And what I have tried to do, and what I tried to do when I was blogging about this, was sort out what was—what made sense, what was consistent, and what I thought was just salacious innuendo.  What we know happened is that, at some point in time, between Mykonos and Kusadasi, George disappeared. 

There‘s consistently, in all of the conversations that I had with people, who just for some reason seem to feel the need to share with me their insights and what they had thought or what they had witnessed or what they had heard, the most consistent story that kept coming up was that sometime at around—sometime between 2:30 and 4:00 in the morning, there was a loud thump that was heard, and there had been witnesses who had seen George being taken back to his room with four or five guys, who other people had said they had seen George spending a fair amount of time with, partying and in the casino with, and that, shortly after that, George disappeared.

And no one seems to really have an honest idea or an honest sense of what‘s really happened. 

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  OK.  So, let‘s talk about a timeline for a second. 

H:  OK. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Go back to that night.  You say between 2:30 and 4:00...

H:  Yes. 

SCARBOROUGH:  ... these young men return to the room with Mr. Smith.  We have had two witnesses two come on the past two nights, one saying he heard a loud thud around 4:00 a.m., another telling us last night she heard a scream around 4:00 a.m.

Can you tell us about these young men, who seem to be the suspects?  Everybody is looking at them, and saying, wait, wait.  They were the last seen with him.  Maybe there was a big fight.  What can you tell us about them? 

H:  To the best of my knowledge, Joe, I don‘t—they—there‘s no reason for me to believe that there was any kind of a big fight that specifically involved them.  Yes...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Have they been—have they been in contact with you? 

H:  I would say a friend of theirs has been in contact with me via e-mail.

And what I—what blogged about is why he contacted me.  There was a couple of incidents that happened.  They were definitely questioned in relationship to George‘s disappearance.  But they have consistently insisted that all they simply did was take him back to his room, make sure that he was on the bed, you know, that he was OK, and that—and then they left shortly after that. 

There was—they—there‘s the stories about noises and conversations and people being out on his—on the patio where George was.  Every time I have asked about that, what‘s consistently come back to me in the e-mail has been, no, we just simply left him in the room.  One of the guys used the bathroom.  Nobody was out on the patio.  Nobody was out on the balcony.  We left and that was the end of it. 

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  So, let‘s talk about the wife for a second, if we can. 

H:  Sure. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Because we have—we are showing pictures of the wife here kissing her husband, her new husband. 

A question that everybody wants to know is, where was the wife? 

Obviously, from what we have heard, she wasn‘t in the room at the time.  There‘s been some conflicting evidence out there.  Originally, a statement was released that she woke up, she left the room, that she was working out.  Other people have come forward and said that she was passed out drunk two stories, three stories above.  What can you tell us about this wife?  Where was she the morning her husband disappeared? 

H:  That is—you know, that‘s the question that everybody is asking.

And, as I said in the blog, there were several different responses.  My stateroom attendant personally told me that she had been found on another deck and was not anywhere near her room.  There was a press release by Royal Caribbean that said the same thing, that she had been found not in her room, but had been found working out in the gym.

And there were other stories that were out there that she had been found in the spa and that nobody—or—and various other sort of salacious innuendo that had been put forth.  What we don‘t know is where she was found.  And that‘s because—I mean, here‘s what—here‘s where it becomes a little bit sticky, Joe.

And here‘s, I think, where I have tried to make sure—where my problem has been.  No—no—I understand the frustration that everyone feels, because nobody has gone—been able to speak to either families here.  But I think that we have to first step back a bit and realize that the Smiths have lost a son under very mysterious circumstances.  Undoubtedly, they are grieving, and, undoubtedly, they are trying to get to the bottom of this and figure out what happened. 

And I understand that Jennifer is—I am sure that Jennifer is probably very much confused and also very—and is dealing with it in her own way.  So, I don‘t—I worry that, through everybody‘s zealousness and wanting to understand what happened, that we are forgetting that there are some people here that are in pain.  I—I can‘t say honestly where Jen was.  I had several different people put several different stories out there.  I do know that she was not according to what I was told, she was not in her room when the guys dropped George off there. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right. 

H:  She was seen in the casino.  She was seen is in the casino with George.  But she was not in the room when they was dropped her off.  Beyond that...

SCARBOROUGH:  Not in the room that night. 

H:  Yes. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right. 

H:  Beyond that, I don‘t know where she is.  I don‘t know where she was. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right.

H:  And I think that we hopefully will—that remains to be seen, and hopefully somebody will be able to answer that in the not-too-distant future.  

SCARBOROUGH:  That‘s what we have got—that‘s what have got to do. 

Thanks so much for being with us.  We greatly appreciate it. 

That really is the big question, again, conflicting testimony that she was in the room in the morning, that she went up to the gym, that she didn‘t hear—she didn‘t recognize realize that her husband was missing, a lot of confusion. 

We are going to be right back with our panel in one minute, plus, a shocking story of the husband who paid $70,000 to have his wife killed—that and much more when SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY returns. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Welcome back to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY. 

We are following the mysterious story of missing newlywed George Smith, who vanished from his honeymoon cruise between Greece and Turkey. 

Let‘s bring in Mary Fulginiti, Bill Stanton and Casey Jordan. 

Casey, we have been showing a picture of a blood-stained awning.  Tell us what—from everything you have heard, what went on that night?

CASEY JORDAN, CRIMINOLOGIST:  Well, I know as much as you do.

But I have to agree that this photograph of the blood-stained awning taken by the people who were in the cabin underneath the Smiths, is probably going to be the real piece of evidence that keeps this case open and propels it forward.  We know that...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Why is that? 

JORDAN:  Well, because it is the biggest indicator that he was thrown overboard.  He‘s missing.  We know that there was blood in the cabin.  It was reported by the cabin cleaning crew the next morning. 

But, like you, the biggest key to what happened is really going to be with information that Jennifer must have.  Why wasn‘t she in the room?  And you have to remember, these are people who were on their honeymoon.  Sure, people need some alone time.  But to spend their honeymoon separately on a cruise in two different decks, in different casinos and everything, something is rotten in Denmark. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes. 

JORDAN:  Something just isn‘t adding up here.

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes.  I think it‘s called a seven-year itch, not a seven-hour itch. 

(LAUGHTER)

JORDAN:  Exactly. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Mary Fulginiti, let me bring—let me bring you in, Mary. 

Does it look like a crime scene to you? 

MARY FULGINITI, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR:  Yes.

I mean, you have a missing body and you have got a pool of blood, and you have got witnesses that are saying that they have heard screaming and thuds, and there‘s blood on a rail and in the room. 

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Is the wife the primary suspect? 

FULGINITI:  You know, I can‘t say based on what we have heard. 

What we have seen reported is that the Turkish authorities have ruled her out as a suspect, at least preliminarily.  So, I am certain they have, you know, met with her and spoken with her, but it is a delicate situation because she just lost her husband.  So, they are going to get the information they need, but they are going to have to do it in a delicate manner. 

SCARBOROUGH:  But, Mary, that‘s always a problem, isn‘t it?  A spouse disappears and they immediately look at the other spouse. 

FULGINITI:  No, I can‘t deny that.  I think, if you asked an investigator, statistically, you know, from a crime statistic point of view, how many times is it the spouse that commits the crime when a spouse goes missing or a spouse is dead, and those statistics are there for a reason.  They are pretty high.

But here, you know, we have heard different accounts that she wasn‘t anywhere near him.  We have also heard people say that there were four men that were in the room last seen, we believe, with him.  And, you know, those are the gentlemen that they are going to need to speak with, and everybody else, frankly, on that ship that saw him with them, talking with them and/or his wife. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes, Casey—or, actually, Bill Stanton, let me ask you, who do you look at first, the five young men who were last seen with him or the wife?

STANTON:  Joe, this is a tossup.  You can go with the wife.  You can go with the gentlemen.

Or I could spin it.  You do a what-if scenario.  What if he didn‘t find his wife home?  Suppose he became despondent?  Suppose he fell down, hit his head, and suppose he threw himself off the rail?  You throw all that into the mix and you deduce, what is the most likely?  But I could give you that what-if and many others all day long. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Al right.  We have got to head on now.  So sorry.  Hope you all can come back tomorrow night, Casey Jordan, Mary Fulginiti, and, of course, Bill Stanton.

This story is going to be continuing for a very long time. 

Now, it‘s a simple cash transaction caught on tape, but the story behind it isn‘t simple at all.  The man on the tape is former Harold Stonier.  He‘s offering $70,000 for the murder of his wife, Jamie, back in April of 2003.  Look at another clip from the surveillance tape. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  If you do it in there, you can always, after—if she was strangled, right, and then you move the body to the car immediately, you can clean up.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  On Tuesday, Stonier was sentenced to 10 years in a federal prison. 

With me now is Jamie Stonier.

Jamie, I just got to ask you a question.  What—I know you have seen it many times.  What do you think when you see your husband and the father of your son trying to pay somebody $70,000 to kill you? 

JAMIE STONIER, HUSBAND TRIED TO HAVE HER KILLED:  Well, it makes you question, you know, how much they value your life.  And it‘s quite shocking. 

SCARBOROUGH:  It‘s just—it‘s unbelievable.  And yet, your husband only got 10 years in prison.  I mean, what do you think of the sentence?  And are you afraid, when he comes out of jail, he may try to seek revenge on you and your son? 

STONIER:  That‘s one of the foremost concerns. 

I guess the point I brought before the judge was, I asked that he would get 15 to 20 years, so that he would be—my son Ian (ph) would be an adult before Harold got out.  So, it was a huge concern.  And, of course, I fear that he may do something from prison.  You just never know. 

SCARBOROUGH:  What do you do?  When you first find out about this, I know there have got to be 1,000 different emotions that you are confronting.  How do you step through the process?  Do you go back and try to figure out why he was trying to kill you?  Is there any way that you can put any logic on this at all? 

STONIER:  Well, from what I have read and what I have learned, these men are all about control.  And if they don‘t have control, then they become quite angry and deceptive.  And they are just very, very tough to deal with.  It‘s just not a logical-type person to try to reason with. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Now, of course, the person that he was talking to was an ATF agent.  That‘s why he‘s in jail.  That‘s why you are still alive.  Were you alerted to this fact before the sting went down?  How was the ATF called in? 

STONIER:  I believe that the mafia-related man that he approached went to his attorney.  And that attorney and Frank Nunez (ph), I believe his name is, went to the ATF agents with the information they had. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Quick question:  Is there any way you can ever forgive him for this? 

STONIER:  Well, I forgive him, because it enables—it enables me to heal, and it gives life purpose and not having to dwell in the anger and bitterness, and just be able to move on with my two boys and enjoy life for what it is right now. 

And we are really—we are getting through the process, and we have some wonderful friends.  And I am a strong Christian.  And I just believe that, you know, God is in control in this situation, and he will lead the path for us. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right, Jamie, well, know that you are certainly in my family‘s prayers and everybody‘s prayer in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.  We greatly appreciate you being with us tonight. 

STONIER:  Thanks, Joe. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And we‘ll be right back in a minute. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Here‘s something you don‘t see every day.  We are going to show you the shocking place a tornado touched down. 

Plus, check out my morning read to get a torrent of information at Joe.MSNBC.com. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Tonight, a glimpse of nature‘s fury. 

First up, take a look at this night-vision video.  Mexico‘s so-called volcano of Fire staged a spectacular predawn eruption Wednesday morning.  The volcano shot rock, ash, and steam almost 9,000 feet into the air.  Ash rained on nearby communities, but there are no reports of any deaths.  The 12,533-foot volcano has had several strong explosions over the last months.  It‘s located 430 miles west of Mexico City. 

And they are calling it the tea-time tornado.  This looks like a scene from Tornado Alley, but it‘s actually the city of Birmingham, England.  Cameras were rolling as the twister hit the ground around 2:30 afternoon.  Experts are calling it a mini-tornado, but it did some major damage.  At least 12 people were hurt, three seriously.  The wind knocked down trees, overturned cars, and left parts of south Birmingham covered with glass, bricks and furniture. 

That‘s all the time we have for tonight in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.  If you know anything about the mystery of that cruise ship, e-mail us at Joe.MSNBC.com. 

We‘ll see you tomorrow night.

Watch Scarborough Country each weeknight at 10 p.m. ET

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