Two reported Islamic State terrorists who allegedly tortured and murdered American hostages in Syria are expected to be transported to the United States in mid-October, according to two government officials familiar with the matter.
Alexanda Kotey and El Shafee Elsheikh, known by the hostages as the “Beatles” because of their British accents, remain in U.S. military custody in Iraq, the officials told NBC News.
The “Beatles” are British nationals who are reportedly responsible for 27 killings, including those of two British aid workers, according to NBC.
They also allegedly kidnapped and held hostages, including American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff, and U.S. aid workers Kayla Mueller and Peter Kassig.
Foley, Sotloff and Kassig were beheaded, according to news reports.
So-called ISIS Beatles Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey can now be tried in the United States. A British court today lifted a ban on the sharing of evidence by UK authorities with American prosecutors relating to the men. It paves the way for their transfer from Iraq to the US pic.twitter.com/tHW3SiOxQ3
— Rohit Kachroo (@RohitKachrooITV) September 22, 2020
Mueller was allegedly sexually abused and tortured before she died in 2015, NBC reported. Both Kotey and Elsheikh reportedly confirmed their involvement in holding Mueller hostage.
Elsheikh said he obtained an email address from Mueller to demand a ransom from her family, according to NBC.
The family was reportedly told that if they didn’t pay 5 million euros, they would receive a photo of “Kayla’s dead body.”
Kotey and Elsheikh also confessed to beating Foley, who was beheaded by the alleged leader of the kidnappers Mohammed Emwazi. Emwazi was killed by CIA drone missiles in 2015.
Kotey and Elsheikh previously denied their role in the killings and torture, NBC reported. They called themselves “liaisons” between the hostages and senior members of ISIS.
“Beatle” Aine Lesley Davis was sentenced in Turkey to seven years and six months in prison in 2015.
Kotey and Elsheikh were taken into U.S. military custody last year, though they were initially captured in 2018, NBC reported.
Their transfer to the U.S. pending trial was delayed because British officials were concerned the men would receive the death penalty.
After Attorney General William Barr said Kotey and Elsheikh would not receive the death penalty, the U.K. courts’ ban on sharing information regarding their cases was lifted, NBC reported.
The “Beatles” British citizenship was revoked after they were found to be members of ISIS.
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