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February 4th, 2010
09:43 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 02/04/10

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We have breaking news on the 10 Americans charged with kidnapping in Haiti. Plus, raw politics from Tennessee where the Tea Party convention is underway. We're also saying good-bye to two Pandas, now headed back to China.

Want more details on what we're covering? Read EVENING BUZZ

Scroll down to join the live chat during the program. It's your chance to share your thoughts on tonight's headlines. Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules.

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Filed under: Live Blog • T1
soundoff (337 Responses)
  1. niwat kurusattra, chicago

    Anderson Cooper, Do we know if the 10 kidnappers are all first time offenders? the sentence could lean toward lenient side amidst the quake crisis. I know, Guiltily charged as the 10 American kidnappers indicted, but no parole? or even a bail-out options? whatever happen to community services as parts of sentencing, they could do something more productive and useful than being locked-up in Haitian jails.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:12 pm |
  2. Dodie, Irvine CA

    Good evening Starr Nice to see you tonight! Yikes, this story is so unnerving to me

    February 4, 2010 at 10:12 pm |
  3. Sherri

    @Anthonia
    Maybe their intentions were good. But that doesn't mean your allowed to kidnap children and try to run away with them.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:12 pm |
  4. Kimberly, IL

    Good interview with RIchard. His story again leads us to believe that they didn't have good intentions; or at least they were thinking more about themselves than the children!

    Thanks for all the followups on this story

    February 4, 2010 at 10:12 pm |
  5. Cessy-Chicago

    Had a feeling that this " missionaries" have a different agenda from the moment their arrest was made. Just odd...

    February 4, 2010 at 10:11 pm |
  6. Judy

    I have some land for sale if you think good intentions are involved.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:11 pm |
  7. meg

    I'm justwary that the US gov't is going to get involved. From the sound of it the leader of the group had ulterior motives & not on the up&up. The exterior had pretty wrapping paper but I'm thinking this situation in reality is more like trafficking!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:11 pm |
  8. Dodie, Irvine CA

    @ Emily

    Yes, this seems to be leaning in that direction. Talk about creepy!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:10 pm |
  9. A. Smith, Oregon

    I find this behavior more disgusting when they attempt to excuse this under the guise of religious values. Stealing and kidnapping children for highly questionable purposes has no religious value and represents no true religious principles, it is a serious crime in all civilized nations around the world.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:10 pm |
  10. Gabriela Vaughan from Nicaragua

    Is impossible to determine if they did it with good intentions or not, I mean, they are going to say always that it was with good intentions, what's the moral of the story? Don't break other countries laws! period!

    Hi Dodie!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:10 pm |
  11. starr formerly known as vincent

    Hi everyone!! Hi Dodie!!

    What a story re: the Christian group. It is so disappointing that these people would take childen like that, expecially Laura.

    It's internationally emabarrasing for the USA!

    What will happen with these people?? Their intensions are certainly suspect.
    I am veryr glad Richard got his childrren!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:10 pm |
  12. Emily

    A beautiful family that Richard Pickett has! 😛
    Congrats indeed!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:10 pm |
  13. Cessy-Chicago

    Hi Anderson! Good evening everyone!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:10 pm |
  14. kim-chicago

    This seemed sketchy from the get go...

    February 4, 2010 at 10:10 pm |
  15. Isabel Siaba

    @Emily

    I read today Conviction on the kidnapping charge carries a maximum penalty of life in prison; the criminal association charge carries a penalty of three to nine years

    February 4, 2010 at 10:09 pm |
  16. Claus

    @Barb,
    I think it's quite likely several members of this group were quite naive, including probably this young girl.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:09 pm |
  17. Emily

    @Dodie,

    It will be interesting to see if the charges are in fact increased at any time to child trafficking!

    @sheba,
    I agree with you.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:09 pm |
  18. Dodie, Irvine CA

    This is real creepy to me. Her need to take children... Ugh!!!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:09 pm |
  19. Anthonia-Bay Area

    Good Evening Everyone!

    I'm pretty sure those Americans were not intended to hurt those children.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:08 pm |
  20. Linda in Arizona

    Gosh, I guess they thought they could just go into another country, and steal children from desperately poor people, hustle them into another country, known for its child sex tourism by the way, and no one would be the wiser. Why do we keep hearing they are "missionaries"? Don't you have to have some training for the job of "missionary", or can a bunch of people just get together and call themselves that? Now AC says they were planning to bring the children back to the US, (this after telling the parents they could come to the Dominican Republic and visit them in the non-existent orphanage with the swimming pool). These people have broken laws, and lied repeatedly and consistently to everyone they came in contact with. Good intentions? I think they were going to adopt them out to parents in the US and charge an "adoption fee". I know Silsby was in it for the money. She probably would have tried to sell some of them in DR, and bring some back to the US. There must be something wrong with her. It's crazy that she thought she could pull all that illegality off. By the way, I never thought they had good intentions, and it doesn't matter anyway what her intentions were. She kidnapped children.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:08 pm |
  21. Dodie, Irvine CA

    @ Emily

    I understand the worst case scenario would be life in prison...

    February 4, 2010 at 10:08 pm |
  22. Barb

    There's a young girl in the group, do you know how old she is? It's troubling to see a young girl caught in the middle of this.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:08 pm |
  23. Claus

    It's a small group of Americans being irresponsible. It is not all Americans.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:07 pm |
  24. Kimberly, IL

    Good evening,

    Sad to say I am glad the kidnappers are being charged! The more this story develops the more sketchy it seems- I definately question their intentions.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:07 pm |
  25. sheba

    These are the kind of people that give us a bad name overseas – the attitude with which they committed the crime knowingly and thinking that they will get away with it ...gives us a bad name. We are trying to build a reputation overseas and these people are not helping by kidnapping Haitian kids.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:07 pm |
  26. Dodie, Irvine CA

    @ Isabel Siaba

    Right on target! I completely agree... taking advantage of a sad situation.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:07 pm |
  27. Sarah

    The sad thing about this story (Americans charged in Haiti) is that it takes away from the bigger story happening in Haiti. It's outrageous that these people thought they were doing good. She (the leader of the group) needs a good therapist.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:06 pm |
  28. Emily

    @Dodie,
    It's just so disappointing that they seem to have "knowingly" did this!

    I wonder what the Haitian legal system is like.
    I don't know much about it, myself.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:05 pm |
  29. Dodie, Irvine CA

    @ Emily

    It is more than sad... it is really embarrassing! The world is watching us being so irresponsible. I only hope they have nothing to do with child trafficking.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:05 pm |
  30. Gabriela Vaughan from Nicaragua

    So the Americans were charged with kidnapping, well, I was thinking yesterday a lot about it and I think that they have to pay for being so naive and specially irresponsible, in every country are laws to follow, and they don't stop to think about it! so there are the consequences...

    February 4, 2010 at 10:05 pm |
  31. Claus

    I think we need to decide if we are going to wait for all the facts. They keep changing everyday. I think the truth will eventually emerge.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:04 pm |
  32. A. Smith, Oregon

    The leader of the kidnappers was found to be in severe economic duress in her business and home payments back in America. It appears these kidnappers looked to make a large sum of money from kidnapping these 30 children.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:04 pm |
  33. Sharon Hastings

    Good evening everyone. Hopefully what's happening with the missionaries will warn others not to try this again in Haiti. They had to know they were doing something illegal.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:04 pm |
  34. Paula, Colorado

    Anderson,
    Hi!
    The situation with the missionaries in Haiti is really troubling. I hope for a reasonable and fair outcome.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:04 pm |
  35. Dodie, Irvine CA

    When taking other people's children across the border into another country... is Kidnapping by our laws as well as Haiti. The 10 Americans acted very irresponsibly! In actuality, we really do not know all the facts and the full reasons they would try to cross a border without any paperwork!

    Now it comes out that these people were lying? Yikes... I hope they are not connected with child trafficking!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:04 pm |
  36. Isabel Siaba

    @Anderson

    I would know... Good intentions or they took advantage of weakness moment that Haitians were going

    February 4, 2010 at 10:03 pm |
  37. Jennifer - Michigan

    Wow, sorry to hear about the missionaries being warned about lawlessness, then barreling forward. Man!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:03 pm |
  38. sheba

    Here is my take on the Americans in Haiti...do they live under a rock? Could they have done that in America? taken kids from poor neighborhoods in America to another country without documentation? I am sorry if i am alone in this but i am suspicious of them because they were warned and ignored the warning. CNN constantly televised orphans waiting for documentation in order to leave the country...these people knew the process – why did they not follow the process like everyone else...and if their intent was to help why separate families...they could have offered some financial help to those families instead of taking their kids...it all doesn't add up. Also why did they not go to an orphanage instead? why take kids who had mother's and/or fathers...something doesn't add up.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:03 pm |
  39. Megan Dresslar - Shoreline, WA

    Helloooo Anderson, Kiran C, Megan, Jessica Y, Ed Henry, David Gergen Martina Ilstad, Emily and my friends Twitter/Facebook Bloggers!!!!!
    Thanks for coming in to join us tonight!
    Not good news for me to hear 10 American charged of kidnapped orphanage in Haiti! OUCH!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:02 pm |
  40. Emily

    This is such a sad story here! Americans trying to kidnap 33 children.
    Very sad that they seem to have knowing broke the law.
    What's going to happen to them until they go to trial?

    Will they be held in Haiti?

    February 4, 2010 at 10:02 pm |
  41. Lisa L

    Good evening Anderson,

    I am happy you are anchoring, as you explain what’s happening in the world very well.

    Sincerely,

    Lisa L
    Sydney, Australia

    February 4, 2010 at 10:02 pm |
  42. Dodie, Irvine CA

    We need to allow the Haitian legal system deal with these 10 Americans as they committed a crime in Haiti. America needs to stay out of this!

    February 4, 2010 at 10:02 pm |
  43. A. Smith, Oregon

    Haitian family members of the kidnapped children have stated they were lied to by the Kidnappers and told they could travel to The Dominican Republic to see them. Now the 10 kidnappers are lieing in statements they were going to take these 30 children back to America. The child kidnapping charges are against the Haitian people and America should stay out of the trial and sentencing against these people.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:02 pm |
  44. Broxton GA

    how would we handle the situation if it was the other way around and they were over here taking our children?

    What if the Haitians were coming here and taking our children from families even in difficult times and taking them across borders to who knows what kind of fate? What then?

    I believe that Haiti should charge and hold the missionaries responsible for their actions and the crimes that they have committed. If they committed the crime there they should face the charges there and what ever penalties that Haiti hold for those crimes. Our government should not be helping to get them out if they committed a crime. If Haitians were over here and kidnapping our children we would not want Haiti to come and get them before they are allowed to face our courts and our punishments.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:02 pm |
  45. Claus

    Good evening, Anderson and 360 team.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:01 pm |
  46. Dodie, Irvine CA

    Good evening Anderson Cooper, 360 Team, Emily, Starr, A. Smith, Gabriela-Nicaragua and other bloggers

    February 4, 2010 at 10:01 pm |
  47. Isabel Siaba

    Hi Anderson, David (Indiana) and everyone else...

    February 4, 2010 at 10:00 pm |
  48. Jennifer - Michigan

    Good evening – glad to be with you tonight.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:00 pm |
  49. Gabriela Vaughan from Nicaragua

    Good Evening Anderson, 360 Crew, Emily and everyone!

    Is nice to be here again!!! :o)

    February 4, 2010 at 10:00 pm |
  50. Emily

    Good evening Anderson, 360Team, Megan, Martina, Dodie, Gabriela, Heather & Bloggers!

    Not good that those 10 Americans were trying to take 33 children out of the country when told not to!
    It's not good to be breaking other countries laws, no matter how well intentioned you think you are! It's all about respect.

    Looking forward to what legal opinions Jeffrey Toobin has to add.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:00 pm |
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