Two British members of the Islamic State (IS) have been indicted for terrorism in the United States, accused of the murder of four American hostages beheaded by that fundamentalist group, reported the Government of Donald Trump. Alexanda Kotey Y El Shafee Elsheikh They are two of the four members of an IS cell known as the “Beatles”, named after their Western hostages because of their British accent, including the journalist from EL PERIÓDICO Marc Marginedas and the reporters are also Spanish Javier Espinosa Y Ricardo Garcia Vilanova.
Kotey and Elseikh were captured in 2018 by Kurdish militias in Syria and brought to Iraq a year ago. Extradited this Wednesday, the two individuals, whose British citizenship was withdrawn, have been processed in a tribunal de Alexandria (Virginia), on the outskirts of Washington.
In the USA they are accused of the kidnapping and murder of foreigners, including American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff, and the cooperators Kayla Mueller y Peter Kassig, who were beheaded and their deaths filmed and disclosed on social media by the IS.
“Although we cannot bring your children back, we will do everything we can to obtain justice for them, for you and for all Americans“said Deputy US Attorney General John Demers, reports EFE. Kotey and Elsheikh, who have denied the charges,” will receive a process with the guarantees that they denied to their victims, “he added.
Waiver of the death penalty
To achieve their extradition, the US authorities promised that, if found guilty, they could not be sentenced to the death penalty, so the couple faces maximum sentences of life imprisonment.
According to the Department of Justice, the charges they face include hostage taking resulting in death, conspiracy to assassinate Americans outside the US, to provide material support to terrorists resulting in death, and to provide material support to a foreign terrorist group resulting in death.
The director of the FBI, Christopher Wray, also referred to the British victims of the ‘Beatles’, David Haines and Alan Henning, and to the “victims of all nations who suffered unimaginable cruelty at the hands of ISIS.” Marc Marginedas, EL PERIÓDICO’s special envoy to Syria, was kidnapped in September 2013 in Syria and handed over to the ‘Beatles. “He was held captive for 6 months and in 2015, revealed for EL PERIÓDICO the details of a cruel captivity, loaded with violence and extreme situations.
The leader of the cell was the British Mohamed Emwazi, known as “Jihadist John“and allegedly killed in 2016 in a drone attack launched by the United States in Syria. The fourth member of the” Beatles “, Aine Lesley Davis, was sentenced in 2017 in Turkey to seven and a half years in prison.
The mother of the American journalist James Foley, the first of the hostages beheaded and exhibited on social networks by his executioners, congratulated himself on the extradition and indictment in the United States. “I pray that I have the strength to confront him and I pray that justice is done,” Diane Foley told the France Presse agency, recalling that her son “was not the only victim.”
Foley stressed that “he has never wanted the death penalty” for his son’s murderers. “He needs an opportunity to recognize what they have done to so many innocents,” he stressed.