An incarcerated member of an ISIS terror cell known as “the Beatles” has reportedly disappeared from U.S. custody just like drug trafficker Edgar Valdez Villarreal.
The name of Alexanda Kotey, 39, known as “Jihadi George,” now “no longer appears on US custody records at Pennsylvania’s high-security Canaan prison,” according to the LBC.
“Sentenced to life in prison in August after pleading guilty to eight counts of abduction, torture and the beheading of western hostages, his name has now seemingly been scrubbed from Federal Bureau of Prisons records,” the British outlet reported Thursday.
Family members of his victims aren’t pleased. Particularly Bethany Haines, whose father, British man David Haines, was kidnapped by Kotey and then executed by the other “Beatles.”
‘I will keep fighting and pushing and pushing them and make their lives hell.’ Bethany Haines, daughter of murdered British aid worker David, says she will never stop in seeking justice for her dad https://t.co/e4pLdIuuee pic.twitter.com/NGcRb7pI80
— ITV News (@itvnews) October 10, 2019
“I was made aware that Kotey had disappeared from the system and it has been impossible to trace where he is. That doesn’t seem right, because I don’t want to think that he has managed to negotiate his way into any kind of easy treatment on the basis of him assisting authorities or anything else,” she said in a statement to the Scottish Daily Record.
“In the past he has been traceable, as we have access to data via the US victim notification scheme, and we at least had the reassurance that he was in a high security facility. The last we heard he was in a maximum security jail in Pennsylvania, which is renowned for violence, and I was fine with that because I don’t want to hear about him getting any easy time,” she continued.
Haines added that she doesn’t “think it is right that he can just disappear from the system and the families whose lives were devastated by his actions are left to wonder where he is.”
Is it possible that he’s negotiated some “kind of easy treatment?” It appears so.
Prior to his sentencing in August, he “accepted a plea deal in return for a more lenient sentence which notably included ‘cooperation requirements’.
“The plea deal also meant he was allowed to serve out his time in Canaan, as opposed to ADX Florence prison in Colorado – nicknamed the ‘Alcatraz of the Rockies,'” according to the LBC.
A federal court has sentenced Islamic State member Alexanda Kotey to life in prison for the murders of four Americans in Syria in 2014 and 2015.
— PBS NewsHour (@NewsHour) April 29, 2022
That said, the reason for Kotey’s disappearance is likely nothing sinister, according to Bureau of Prisons spokesperson Donald Murphy.
“There are several reasons why an inmate may be referenced as ‘not in BOP custody’. Inmates who were previously in BOP custody and who have not completed their sentence may be outside BOP custody for a period of time for court hearings, medical treatment or for other reasons,” he said to the Daily Record.
“We do not provide specific information on the status of inmates who are not in the custody of the BOP for safety, security, or privacy reasons,” Murphy added.
The Daily Mail likewise notes that the “other reasons” might include “them being in transit, that they are yet to be processed, that they have been transferred to a halfway house, or that they have been released on parole (unlikely in the case of Kotey as he is serving a life sentence). ”
That’s also the possibility that “Kotey has been taken abroad to assist with investigations into another case.”
Note that “the Beatles” are the same group that killed journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff, as well as aid workers Kayla Mueller and Peter Kassig.
As for Haines, he was kidnapped in 2013 and reportedly murdered in early 2014.
“British aid worker David Haines was being held hostage by Islamic State militants, after being captured in Syria in March 2013. The plight of 44-year-old dad-of-two was revealed when he appeared at the end of a video showing the beheading of US journalist Steven Sotloff. ISIS released a video on September 13 [in 2014] showing David’s execution,” the Daily Mirror notes.
Haines’ execution prompted widespread condemnation.
The murder of David Haines is an act of pure evil. My heart goes out to his family who have shown extraordinary courage and fortitude.
— David Cameron (@David_Cameron) September 13, 2014
“Mr Haines’s death has been condemned by international political leaders, including Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, French President Francois Hollande, Labour leader Ed Miliband and Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond. US President Barack Obama said the US would work with the UK and other countries to ‘bring the perpetrators of this outrageous act to justice,'” the BBC reported at the time.
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