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* Images of the burned car owned by Katherine Smith * alternate title: How Arabs Kill Witnesses
Yahoo-AP ^ | 02.15.02 | AP

Posted on 02/15/2002 7:43:26 AM PST by Registered

The burned car of Katherine Smith sits in a garage at the FBI office Thursday, Feb. 14, 2002, in Memphis, Tenn. Smith, 49, a Tennessee state employee, charged in a scheme with five Middle Eastern men to sell fraudulent Tennessee driver's licenses, died Sunday in a fiery car crash the day before her first court appearance. Her badly burned body was discovered Sunday in a rural Tennessee County. FBI agent J. Suzanne Nash testified Wednesday that witnesses told investigators they "noticed flames from the back seat" before Smith's car struck a pole. The agent added that the gas tank was intact. (AP Photo/Greg Campbell)

Special Agent George Bolds IV, media coordinator for the FBI Memphis Office, inspects the trunk of a burned-out Acura, owned by Katherine Smith, Thursday, Feb. 14, 2002, in Memphis. Smith, a driver's license examiner, was scheduled to appear in federal court Monday on charges that she sold driver's licenses to five Middle Eastern men, primarily from New York, who did not have proper documentation. Her badly burned body was found in the car Sunday, after it struck a utility pole. (AP Photo/Greg Campbell)

FBI special agent George Bolds IV, a media coordinator with the FBI's Memphis office, looks at a burned-out vehicle that belonged to Katherine Smith, Thursday, Feb. 14, 2002, at the FBI office in Memphis, Tenn. Smith, 49, a Tennessee state employee, charged in a scheme with five Middle Eastern men to sell fraudulent Tennessee driver's licenses, died Sunday in a fiery car crash the day before her first court appearance. Her badly burned body was discovered Sunday in a rural Tennessee County. FBI agent J. Suzanne Nash testified Wednesday that witnesses told investigators they "noticed flames from the back seat" before Smith's car struck a pole. The agent added that the gas tank was intact. (AP Photo/Greg Campbell)


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: Tennessee
KEYWORDS: dmv; jihadinamerica
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Was she found in the driver's seat? Was the car moving? Help me out here.
1 posted on 02/15/2002 7:43:26 AM PST by Registered (registered@aol.com)
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To: _Jim
Well, at least she wasn't thrown into the Mississippi River for a 300 mile journey downstream...hehehe.
2 posted on 02/15/2002 7:44:30 AM PST by Registered
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To: Registered
A driver's license examiner was driving an Acura? That should have clued someone in on something. So are the Feebs being politically correct and out looking for grey-haired little old lady perps?
3 posted on 02/15/2002 7:47:41 AM PST by mewzilla
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To: Registered
Looks like one of those rigged tests that Dateline NBC did.
4 posted on 02/15/2002 7:49:29 AM PST by Deguello
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To: Travis McGee
More of this story....
5 posted on 02/15/2002 7:49:29 AM PST by PatrioticAmerican
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To: mewzilla
Used Acuras go for less than $20,000.
6 posted on 02/15/2002 7:50:04 AM PST by PatrioticAmerican
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To: Registered
Don't know the answers to your questions. But, I read, here on FR, that she had breathed the flames in,(airway passages were 'singed') and that her arms were burned off.

Wonder what they would call a ME mafia???

7 posted on 02/15/2002 7:50:35 AM PST by mommadooo3
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To: Registered
She was found in the drivers seat burned beyond recognition. They used dental records to ID her. Witnesses report that the car was on fire before it struck the utility pole, and there was very little damage to the car from striking the pole. They found gasoline on her clothing and some kind of accelerant in the car. The gas tank and engine were not consumed, only the interior of the car. The question is, how did the murderers ignite the fire and how did the gasoline get on her clothes, and of course, who was the murderer - a terrorist or a high up state official involved in the scheme trying to protect himself.
8 posted on 02/15/2002 7:50:39 AM PST by OrangeDaisy
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To: Registered
What is so f...ing funny about the woman's death. JERK! She made a serious mistake getting involved with the wrong crowd and should not have been selling driver's licenses. She paid the ultimate cost. May God have mercy on her soul.
9 posted on 02/15/2002 7:52:22 AM PST by kellynla
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To: Registered
Well, now the question is, do the FBI want to find out who did this, or not? Will they really work on this case, or will it end up like that fellow who hopped into his car in Arkansas and drove straight into a phone pole, after some of clinton's Whitewater records were found in his trunk? Were they merely incompetent in letting this happen, or were they complicit?
10 posted on 02/15/2002 7:52:58 AM PST by Cicero
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To: Registered
Was she found in the driver's seat? Was the car moving? Help me out here.

Don't know. I've read several accounts of this incident. Not alot of details coming out. Witness protection, perhaps? Do they have her body, or DNA?

11 posted on 02/15/2002 7:53:22 AM PST by Teacup
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To: Registered
well, if she was involved as they say, then obviously there are still some groups active in this country ... of course we wouldn't want to profile who they might be, now would we? (praying the FBI will use common sense ...)
12 posted on 02/15/2002 7:56:03 AM PST by Bobby777
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To: Registered
I just hope it wasn't a hate crime. That would be horrible.
13 posted on 02/15/2002 7:56:50 AM PST by Jack Wilson
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To: Registered;theirjustdue
Hmm. I'm pinging a fire expert I saw on another thread. theirjustdue
14 posted on 02/15/2002 7:56:58 AM PST by isthisnickcool
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To: Registered
FBI says Arson killed woman (NY Times)

Tenn Drivers License Scandal: Flaming Death no accident (Memphis Commercial Appeal)

15 posted on 02/15/2002 7:58:56 AM PST by denydenydeny
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To: mommadooo3
MEfia.
16 posted on 02/15/2002 7:59:49 AM PST by Apple_Hills
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To: PatrioticAmerican
Right. A low-level civil servant can afford a used Acura. Somehow I don't she was selling licenses because she could pay for it through legal means.
17 posted on 02/15/2002 8:00:47 AM PST by mewzilla
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To: Teacup
Was she found in the driver's seat? Was the car moving? Help me out here.

Flaming death no accident, FBI says
Smith led low-impact life until arrest, fiery end

18 posted on 02/15/2002 8:04:14 AM PST by OrangeDaisy
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To: kellynla
She made a serious mistake getting involved with the wrong crowd and should not have been selling driver's licenses.

An act that may yet produce bitter fruit for many. Perhaps those licenses will facilitate a terrorist attack somewhere? Was she so blind as not to imagine that possibility? Or did her desire for a few extra dollars blind her to this as well? None of this is funny, but pure seriousness can become tedious.

She paid the ultimate cost.

She made the same journey we all must make. She merely departed earlier than expected.

May God have mercy on her soul.

And on ours as well.

19 posted on 02/15/2002 8:05:39 AM PST by Pentagram
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To: mewzilla
i recall reading something yesterday that she bought the acura from one of the accused middle eastern men. me thinks there was more to these relationships than just criminal.
20 posted on 02/15/2002 8:06:00 AM PST by Scarpetta
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To: Apple_Hills
LOL!!!
21 posted on 02/15/2002 8:06:54 AM PST by mommadooo3
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To: PatrioticAmerican
Used Acuras go for less than $20,000.

Or two Tennessee driver's licenses.

22 posted on 02/15/2002 8:08:36 AM PST by Lonesome in Massachussets
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To: mewzilla
The victim was in the process of buying the Acura from one of the codefendants; the car is still shown in his name. He operated a gas station in Memphis for a couple of years prior to this. The victim admitted at the time of her arrest that she had already helped this guy obtain six or seven licenses.
23 posted on 02/15/2002 8:10:10 AM PST by fury86
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To: Scarpetta
She was the only one of the all the people charged in this case to be free from jail. Why? Why wasn't she in jail, too? Because it's easier to kill her elsewhere? Whoever decided to let her free has some 'splaining to do.
24 posted on 02/15/2002 8:14:37 AM PST by ValerieUSA
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To: kellynla
Where did I say I found her death to be funny? Get a clue.
25 posted on 02/15/2002 8:16:00 AM PST by Registered
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To: Registered
When you cross really bad people, really bad things happen to you.

I wonder if TN's DMV can search their records and sort by which employee processed the paperwork. It would be interesting to go through her past workload. How many really bad people would turn up in such a query?

Now had this happened in Arkansas, it would have been ruled a suicide.

26 posted on 02/15/2002 8:17:15 AM PST by Redcloak
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To: mewzilla
"A driver's license examiner was driving an Acura? That should have clued someone in on something.

That's not a Acura, it's a Pinto with Acura hubcaps.

27 posted on 02/15/2002 8:18:10 AM PST by #1CTYankee
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To: kellynla
BTW, if you are making that comment because I posted the hehehe, I made that comment because of the absolutely unbelievably rediculous "mysterious" death of a biologist in Tenn. a month or two ago.
28 posted on 02/15/2002 8:18:40 AM PST by Registered
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To: Registered
You know what they say in Memphis, "Nothing to see here, move along. Elvis had a little ole heart attack. Show's over. Everybody go home."
29 posted on 02/15/2002 8:19:05 AM PST by oyez
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To: Teacup
I don't think that witness protection stages deaths. I knew someone who was likely put into the program. She was a key witness in a Federal case. One day she and her kids simply vanished without a trace. It was as though they had become unpersons.
30 posted on 02/15/2002 8:21:38 AM PST by Redcloak
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To: ValerieUSA
The Arabs are being held without bail. Ms. Smith was released on her own recognizance, I suppose because she was a native Memphian and a Government employee who posed no flight risk.
31 posted on 02/15/2002 8:21:44 AM PST by fury86
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To: Registered
Bad way to go.

They need to take these five terrorists and "let them escape". Then take them to a former military base where they can talk to Israeli Philippino and Turkish "specialists" for a few weeks.

When they are 100% wrung out of every factoid, put them through a wood chipper feet first.

32 posted on 02/15/2002 8:22:21 AM PST by Travis McGee
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To: mommadooo3
Wonder what they would call a ME mafia???

Good Muslims?

33 posted on 02/15/2002 8:22:36 AM PST by Publius6961
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To: Lonesome in Massachussets
hehe
34 posted on 02/15/2002 8:24:37 AM PST by PatrioticAmerican
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Comment #35 Removed by Moderator

To: Redcloak
Now had this happened in Arkansas, it would have been ruled a suicide.

I agree. And if this had happened during Clinton's tenure, it would have been a blip on the radar screen (gotta keep the masses fat, dumb and happy, ya know). As much as I sometimes feel the jury is out on Bush (especially when I hear him say he will sign an unconstitutional bill into law if it reaches his desk), when I see this story being publicized, I realize we are far better off now, especially in the truth department, with his administration.

36 posted on 02/15/2002 8:31:08 AM PST by WillaJohns
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To: Registered
Gee, center fuel tank must have exploded on its own.
37 posted on 02/15/2002 8:31:54 AM PST by RedBloodedAmerican
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To: oyez
Nothing to see here, move along

Honestly, nothing against you, but if I see that trite, cynical phrase one more time on Free Republic I'm gonna puke.

38 posted on 02/15/2002 8:35:48 AM PST by arm958
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To: shigure
maybe members of any one of a number of intelligence agencies that might be enabling terrorists

Please expand on this. What intelligence agencies are enabling terrorists?

39 posted on 02/15/2002 8:38:01 AM PST by arm958
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To: Registered
Special Agent Bolds looks like he eats Radical Muslim Fundamentalist Terrorists with his Cheerios.
40 posted on 02/15/2002 8:39:06 AM PST by Caipirabob
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To: shigure
Did it occur to you the killers might be non-Arab moslems?

Uh, we're not talking hypothetical here. This is the real world.

41 posted on 02/15/2002 8:40:41 AM PST by arm958
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To: Registered
They were probably sending a message to others on the take also.
42 posted on 02/15/2002 8:41:25 AM PST by LADYAK
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To: shigure
Did it occur to you the killers might be non-Arab moslems?

Did it occur to you to read the AP report about the five Middle Eastern suspects?

43 posted on 02/15/2002 8:50:36 AM PST by arm958
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To: shigure
Good point. An earlier post states that the men's nationalities were not identified.... but everyone is calling them "Arab". I've looked at other related posts and couldn't find confirmation that they were Saudi Arabians, assuming that's what "Arab" means.
44 posted on 02/15/2002 8:52:07 AM PST by LurkedLongEnough
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To: Travis McGee
Is Katherine Smith a Black Muslim?

Would explain how she is a friend of Khaled Odtllah.

45 posted on 02/15/2002 8:56:28 AM PST by razorback-bert
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To: arm958
There is some peripheral evidence in the OKC case, suppressed during the trial, that Muslim terrorists who were also "informers" for the FBI and/or the CIA were involved as John Does. Ambrose Evans-Pritchard's book suggests that the FBI, the BATF, and even the CIA were involved as infiltrators into the Elohim City gang; in fact that there were so many infiltrators there may not have been any perps.

It is well known that the CIA helped Bin Ladin and his associates when they were fighting the Soviets in Afghanistan. There is some question when, and if, they cut these relations. When the CIA has such "assets," it may put them on the back burner but be reluctant simply to cut them off entirely, in case they may be of future use. In fact, until 9/11 you could argue that that was the right thing to do.

There is at least some possibility that this lady was providing drivers licenses to Arabs at the behest of the intelligence agencies, although personally I would doubt it. Greed and corruption are likelier explanations. Nevertheless, under clinton the Dixie Mafia and US intelligence agencies appear to have worked closely together in some instances, which is not a healthy kind of thing to have our government involved in.

46 posted on 02/15/2002 8:57:11 AM PST by Cicero
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To: arm958
What intelligence agencies are enabling terrorists?

the CIA had some primo manuals made for the contra's. they're a great read.

47 posted on 02/15/2002 8:57:12 AM PST by gfactor
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To: arm958
Did it occur to you to read the AP report about the five Middle Eastern suspects?

a majority of people of middle eastern descent in america are christian. now if they are FROM a middle eastern country, the numbers change.

48 posted on 02/15/2002 8:58:57 AM PST by gfactor
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To: Registered
I am sure this is going to show up on TV on CSI and L&O and a few others, explaining how it was done and by whom.

I am not yet sure it was the Arabs who did her in. She might have sold fake IDs to others - like drug smugglers - who hadn't yet been sniffed out and wanted to keep it that way.

49 posted on 02/15/2002 8:59:56 AM PST by DonQ
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To: LurkedLongEnough
couldn't find confirmation that they were Saudi Arabians, assuming that's what "Arab" means.

The term Arab includes more than just Saudi Arabians. It also includes Iraqis, Yemenis, Quawaitis, Egyptians, Palestinians, Jordanians, Syrians, etc. It does not include Iranians, Pakistanis, and other non-Arab Middle Easterners. The term "Middle Eastern" is more all-encompassing.

50 posted on 02/15/2002 8:59:58 AM PST by arm958
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