On the applications Odtllah was carrying on February 5, each man listed as his address 2840 Morning Lake Drive, in another gated community just outside Memphis. None of the men had checked the application's organ donor box.
At motor vehicles, the applications were approved and entered into the computer system. When Odtllah walked outside, the FBI was waiting for him.
Agents in New York had received a tip that the men would be traveling to Memphis that day, and the bureau's agents in Tennessee had staked out Smith's home and the motor vehicle office. When Odtllah and the others pulled out of the parking lot, agents flashed blue lights and pulled them over.
With Odtllah, police found Mostafa Said Abou-Shahi, Mohammed Fares, Sakher Hammad and his cousin Abdelmuhsen Mahmid Hammad. An unnamed juvenile was also taken into custody.
A few months ago, the contents of Sakher Hammad's wallet would have seemed innocuous: Two video rental cards; two major credit cards; a card designating him a "charter member" of Team Ford Racing; a New York plumber's business card.
And a pass, dated 09/05/01 that gave him access to the lower basement of One World Trade Center.
Shown a photocopy, New York City Port Authority officials said the pass looked authentic, but they couldn't be certain without seeing the original.
Authorities say Sakher Hammad told them he is plumber, and that he and his cousin were in the tower to work on the sprinkler system. New York authorities have no record of a plumber's license for either cousin.
A business card in Sakher Hammad's wallet was for a Magic Plumbing & Heating Inc. in Brooklyn. It advertises "custom kitchens, bathrooms, water heaters, boilers, repiping" -- generally residential in nature.
A call to the business produced only a full voice-mailbox for someone named "Rocky." Using a reverse telephone directory, the AP found a list of phone numbers at the company's street address, all of them for individuals, among them Sakher Hammad.
Hammad's wallet also held courtesy cards from the New York City Patrolmen's Benevolent Association and the Detectives' Endowment Association of New York. The latter bears the inscription, "In memory of those who lost their lives on 9-11-01."
It is adorned with a fluttering American flag, a police badge and a picture of the twin towers.
When Smith was arrested, authorities say she admitted helping Odtllah obtain licenses for "cousins" on a half-dozen occasions in the past year. An FBI agent later testified that Odtllah was charging up to $1,200 each to help people get their new identities.
Authorities say the men arrested with Odtllah admitted being in the country illegally.
Fire intentionally set
The day Smith was to appear in court, her car sat in an FBI garage in Memphis, the champagne finish bubbled and streaked with trails of melted rubber window stripping. The upholstery was burned away. Police couldn't even tell if Smith had been wearing a seat belt.
However, they had found a residue of gasoline on her body. The fire, the FBI determined, was intentionally set.
Bolds, the FBI agent, wondered how someone who was conscious could have stayed in the burning car. "If the car is on fire, you're going to stop in the middle of the highway if you have to, to get out," he said.
On Wednesday, Abou-Shahi, Fares and Abdelmuhsen Hammad appeared in court wearing blue windbreakers provided by the court. They face charges of conspiring to obtain licenses with false information. Odtllah and Sakher Hammad had appeared in court Monday.
Court records indicate that another man, Omar Khayata, 20, had also applied for a license February 5, using the same address. But he was not charged, and officials would not say whether he was the juvenile mentioned in the affidavit.
Lawyers for the defendants argued that their clients were being held only because of their ethnicity. "They seem to be trying to tie this to September 11," said Clifton Harviel Jr., who represented Abou-Shahin.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Tim DiScenza replied that each man had participated in a conspiracy intended to acquire a "completely false and untraceable identity." Their motivation, he said, could be "further criminal activity."
In the wake of September 11, there have been crackdowns on illegally obtained driver's licenses elsewhere. Several of the September 11 hijackers had illegally obtained licenses in Virginia.
In denying bond for the five, federal magistrates cited the men's tenuous connections to the community and strong ties to other countries.
Court papers show Odtllah has a wife, a 2-year-old son, a mother and 10 siblings, all living in Jerusalem. Officials say he has "traveled extensively across the U.S. in the last few years."
A magistrate noted Sakher Hammad, "has no ties whatsoever to this community. He has substantial ties to Jordan or Gaza, where his mother lives. He has had less than stable employment ... and a cooperating witness has disappeared under suspicious circumstances."
Of the local telephone numbers listed on the license applications, three were out of service, and one was a fax.
When bond was denied, Fares put his head in his hands and wiped his eyes. The others showed no reaction.
Outside Smith's home, a row of red artificial flowers planted in the ground seems to wilt in the winter chill.
Family members have refused to talk. A wary elderly neighbor said, "I believe somebody killed her."
The answering machine message on Smith's phone was changed to provide information about her funeral Saturday. There was no wake, the message said, because wakes are for sadness and tears.
"Please wear lively attire," said a young woman's voice. "Because this is a joyous occasion -- because she's going home to be with the Lord."
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