Two ISIS fighters in detention overseas, who are known as one half of the ‘Beatles’ terror group, will be transferred to US custody in the coming days to be held for murdering American hostages in Syria and Iraq.
Alexanda Kotey and El Shafee Elsheikh are both British but they renounced their citizenship when they joined ISIS in Syria in 2014.
They murdered two dozen hostages including Americans James Foley, Steven Sotloff, Peter Kassig and Kayla Mueller, and at least eight other hostages from different countries, including the UK.
Foley and Sotloff were journalists working in the region and Kassig and Mueller were aid workers.
Alexanda Kotey and El Shafee Elsheikh, shown in March 2019, will soon be transferred from military custody in Iraq to the US to face trial
The accused claim they took part in torturing them and extracting information but that they did not take part in their executions.
They have been held in US military custody in Iraq since October 2019, but the families of their American victims have long pleaded for them to be brought onto US soil to stand trial.
British authorities were reluctant.
They agreed to hand over evidence to the US that would help with a prosecution which was delivered two weeks ago.
AG Bill Barr has also agreed not to impose a death sentence on either man with the agreement of their victims’s families, who said they rather learn the truth of what happened to their loved ones through a trial.
James Foley and Steven Sotloff were both working as journalists in Syria when they were captured and killed by the pair
Kayla Mueller was working as an aid volunteer in Syria when she was killed in 2015. Peter Kassig was also killed
Neither of the men has been charged yet but charges may include conspiracy to commit murder, hostage-taking resulting in death, kidnapping resulting in death and homicide, according to Justice Department sources cited by The Washington Post on Tuesday.
Their trial is expected to take place in the federal court in Alexandria, Virginia.
The most prominent member of the ISIS Beatles was Mohammed Emwazi, the hooded executioner known as Jihadi John who was filmed slicing the necks of some of the victims in sickening videos that terrified the world in 2014 when ISIS spread them.
He was killed in a US drone strike in 2016. The fourth member is Aine Davis. He is being held in a Turkish prison on terror charges.
Mohamed Emwazi, aka Jihadi John, was the most prolific of the Beatles. He was killed in a US drone strike in 2016