Man allegedly linked to ISIS ‘Beatles’ cell charged with terror offenses

Iain Leslie Davies, 38, was held at Luton Airport on Wednesday evening after arriving in the United Kingdom by plane from Turkey. He was taken to a south London police station, the Met said in a statement.

Davies appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London on Thursday, where he was remanded in custody. He did not file a plea.

A spokesman for the Crown Prosecution Service’s Special Crime and Counter-Terrorism Division said, “In 2014, Iain Leslie Jr Davies was authorized to charge the Metropolitan Police with terrorism offenses and after he was deported to England by Turkish authorities,” according to PA Media. The spokesman added that Davis is charged with terrorism offenses and possession of a firearm for a terrorist-related purpose.

Davis was accused of being part of a “Beatles” cell during a 2017 trial in Turkey. The group, which got its name because of its members’ English accents, gained notoriety for videos of brutal beheadings of hostages.

During the trial he denied being part of ISIS. “I’m not ISIS. I went to Syria because my country was being oppressed,” Davis said in court in 2017.

The head of the cell, Mohammed Emwazi, known as Jihadi John, used these videos, often to convey messages to Western leaders, before killing his victims. He was killed in a drone attack in 2015.

Earlier this year, a US court convicted one of the ISIS “Beatles” — former British citizen El Shafi ElSheikh — for his role in a hostage-taking scheme that killed American, British and Japanese citizens. Elsheikh will be sentenced in August, according to a US Department of Justice news release in April.

The Department of Justice statement did not mention a fourth ISIS “Beetle,” but instead mentioned two ISIS members with whom Elsheikh worked. Co-conspirator Alexandra Cote was sentenced to life in prison in April.

“According to evidence presented during the trial, ElSheikh and two other ISIS members oversaw the terrorist organization’s prisons and hostage locations,” according to the US Department of Justice.

“According to evidence presented during the trial, Elsheikh was part of a group of ISIS members who spoke with a British accent and were referred to by the hostages as ‘The Beatles.’ were caught together as they tried to flee Syria for Turkey.”

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