Islamic State ‘Beatle’ Jailed For Life For His Role In Hostage Murder Plot
A 38-year-old man has been jailed for life for his role in a hostage murder plot carried out by a British Islamic State terror cell known as The Beatles.
Alexanda Amon Kotey, from Paddington, London, was sentenced today (29 April) in a federal court in Alexandria, Virginia after pleading guilty last September to eight criminal charges relating to the abduction, torture and beheading of Islamic State hostages in Syria.
He was one of four IS militants in the gang who were nicknamed after the British music group The Beatles due to their accents, with other members of the group believed to include El Shafee Elsheikh, Mohammed Emwazi and Aine Davis.
I’m at the federal courthouse in Virginia where Alexanda Kotey,a member of the notorious ISIS “Beatles”, was just sentenced to life for the crimes he committed in #Syria.— Bernie Debusmann (@BernieDebusmann) April 29, 2022
See story below for some of the powerful statements made my family members earlier today. pic.twitter.com/eox6ul1kGV
Elsheikh, 33, a recently convicted co-conspirator, appeared alongside Kotey at the sentencing. Emwazi was killed in Syria in 2015, and Davis was found guilty of being a senior member of a terrorist organisation and is currently jailed in Turkey.
Four hostages from the United States are said to have died as a result of the group's actions; namely journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff and aid workers Kayla Mueller and Peter Kassig.
The group has also been blamed in the deaths of British aid workers David Haines and Alan Henning and Japanese journalists Haruna Yukawa and Kenji Goto, BBC News reports.
Family members of those held hostage delivered victim impact statements ahead of Kotey's sentencing today. The daughter of David Haines, Bethany, shared a preview of her statement with the BBC.
From @BernieDebusmann in court— Nomia Iqbal (@NomiaIqbal) April 29, 2022
Family members sat together, many of them tearing up during their impact statements and those of others. They hugged each other.
Kotey looked at the family members directly as they spoke, often stroking his beard, showing no emotion.
In it, she said: "I haven't had a good night's sleep since before my dad was taken. I wake up during the night hearing my dad's screams as he is being tortured by these men."
Bethany described how grief transformed her from 'a popular and bubbly person with lots of friends' to somebody who shuts herself off from the world, and cannot work or study.
Both Kotey and Elsheikh were stripped of their British citizenship in 2018. Kotey was sentenced to life imprisonment for all eight counts running concurrently.
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