- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 20, 2001

An illegal alien from El Salvador yesterday pleaded guilty to helping one of the September 11 hijackers fraudulently obtain a Virginia identification card.
Victor Lopez-Flores, 33, also pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Alexandria to illegally re-entering the United States after being deported. He faces a maximum sentence of 35 years in prison and fines of $500,000. Sentencing was set for Feb. 2.
In his guilty plea, Lopez-Flores said that on Aug. 2 he falsely certified that Ahmed Saleh Alghamdi lived at his Alexandria address. Alghamdi, who was aboard one of the hijacked airliners that crashed into the World Trade Center, used the residency certification to obtain an ID card from the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles a month before the September 11 terrorist attacks.
Prosecutors said Alghamdi paid Lopez-Flores $100 for his help. Lopez-Flores, who was originally deported in 1993 after a criminal conviction, said he had helped at least 20 people obtain false Virginia IDs since May.
Lopez-Flores is the second person to plead guilty in Northern Virginia to charges arising from the investigation into false ID cards obtained by the hijackers.
Earlier this month, Kenys Galicia, a Salvadoran national living legally in Falls Church, pleaded guilty to a felony fraud charge separate from the hijacker-ID case. Her sentencing is set for Jan. 25, when she could receive up to 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Galicia, a notary public, admitted to authorities that she signed residency certification forms on Aug. 2 for Abdulaziz Alomari and Alghamdi. Alomari also helped commandeer the planes that crashed into the World Trade Center.
Her guilty plea stemmed from a separate incident on Aug. 16, when she sold 30 blank Virginia Department of Motor Vehicle forms that she had notarized to a man who was working undercover for DMV investigators.
In exchange for her guilty plea, federal prosecutors dismissed an indictment accusing Galicia of helping the two hijackers and participating in a 14-month conspiracy to help hundreds of people fraudulently obtain Virginia identification documents.
Two others accused of helping the hijackers obtain IDs have pleaded not guilty. Herbert Villalobos of Arlington is scheduled to stand trial Dec. 12, and Luis A. Martinez-Flores of Falls Church is scheduled to stand trial Dec. 17.
Authorities have said none of the four had any advance knowledge of the September 11 attacks, in which more than 5,000 people were killed when hijacked planes crashed into the Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in southwestern Pennsylvania.

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Copyright © 2019 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide