ISIS ‘Beatles’ charged by FBI for killing of James Foley and others and could rot in hellhole ‘supermax’ American prisonOctober 7, 2020
THE ISIS "Beatles" have been charged by the FBI for the killing of James Foley and others, and could rot for life in hellhole "supermax" American prison.
El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey – known as "George" and "Ringo" – have been facing extradition to the US after they were captured in Syria.
The US Justice Department has now announced the long-awaited charges against the two Brits, both from London.
Both now face facing criminal charges in federal US court – with them facing life behind bars in the US's hellhole "supermax" prison.
The expected announcement is a milestone in a years-long effort by US authorities to bring justice to members of the barbaric terrorist group known for beheadings and torture.
Elsheikh and Kotey are two of four men dubbed the Beatles by the hostages they held captive because of their British accents.
Along with duo, there was also Mohammed Emwazi, "John", and the final member of the "band" is believed to have been Aine Davis, "Paul".
"John" was killed in an airstrike by the US in November 2015, while "Paul" was jailed in Turkey in May 2017.
US State Department officials say Kotey "likely engaged in the group's executions and exceptionally cruel torture methods, including electronic shock and waterboarding" in his role as a jail guard.
And similar allegations are made against Elsheikh who "was said to have earned a reputation for waterboarding, mock executions, and crucifixions".
Kotey is believed to have lived in West London until 2009 when he travelled to Gaza in an aid convoy – with his family "deeply distressed" by his turn to terror.
Elsheikh also grew up in West London but traveled to Syria in 2012, previously working as a mechanic and being described as a QPR fan.
After their arrest both claimed they joined the terrorist group for "religious reasons" but were stripped of their right to be a UK citizen.
It is believed the so-called "Beatles" are behind 27 killings, including the beheadings of British aid workers David Haines and Alan Henning along with American journalist James Foley.
The two have been held since October 2019 in American military custody, and the Justice Department has long wanted to put them on trial.
They were captured in Syria in 2018 by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces.
Attorney General William Barr broke a diplomatic standoff earlier this year when he promised the men would not face the death penalty.
That prompted British authorities to share evidence against the men that prosecutors deemed crucial for obtaining convictions.
In interviews while in detention, the two men admitted that they helped collect family email addresses from US aid worker Kayla Mueller.
Horror ransom demands included threats they would send her mum and dad a picture of her corpse unless they got £4.5million.
Kayla was killed in 2015 after 18 months in ISIS captivity.
She is claimed to have been raped by ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, and kept as a slave by jihadi warlord Abu Sayyaf.
Kotey said: "She was in a room by herself that no one would go in."
Elsheikh added: "I took an email from her myself. She was in a large room, it was dark, and she was alone, and…she was very scared."
Kayla's family have been one of the strongest voices calling for them to face the inside of a US courtroom.
Her mum Marsha said: "They did so much horror to so many people. They need to be brought here. They need to be prosecuted."
Both men have also admitted to beating hostages – including Foley – and to attempts to blackmail devastated families to extract ransoms.
Foley was abducted in Syria and held by ISIS for two years before becoming Jihadi John’s first beheading in August 2014.
Elsheikh said: "If the guard would ask, ‘Is the food enough?’ some of the other prisoners were very timid.
"It was always him who would say, ‘It's not enough’."
This, he said, would lead to Foley being hit
"I've hit him before. I've hit most of the prisoners before," admits Elsheikh.
Foley's death was horrifically filmed and uploaded to YouTube with the title "A Message to America."
Their arrival in the US to face charges sets the stage for arguably the most sensational terrorism prosecution since the 2014.
It will be the highest profile case since the prosecution against the suspected ringleader of a deadly attack on the diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya.
US officials declared Elsheikh and Kotey as specially designated global terrorists in 2017.
They accused them of holding captive and beheading approximately two dozen hostages, including American journalists Foley and Steven Sotloff, and aid worker Peter Kassig.
The terrorists face being banged up with some of the world's most dangerous criminals if they land in ADX Florence.
More to follow…
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