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In March 2020, the UK Supreme Court deemed it unlawful for Britain to provide evidence to a foreign country that could be used in a death penalty prosecution.

This means that countries who want to impose the death penalty such as the United States and who rely on information on terrorists from other countries like Britain, won’t receive any information from MI5 to help lead to a conviction which results in death.

Since passing the law, it means any information provided by Britain that leads to a conviction guarantees no death penalty.

Critics have labelled Great Britain as ‘helping to protect the world’s terrorists.’

However, now the threat of execution has been lifted, MI5 can share intelligence with America that may identify two British nationals as part of the notorious Beatles cell.

Alexanda Kotey, 36, and El-Shafee el-Sheikh, 32, face extradition to the States any day after America agreed they would not face the death penalty if convicted.

The cell are feared throughout the Levant.

Led by Mohammed “Jihadi John” Emwazi who butchered western civilians and journalists, the cell are blamed for a string of beheadings.

US and British authorities believe the Beatles, nicknamed by hostages because of their UK accents, were responsible for 27 killings, including the beheadings of Americans James Foley, Steven Sotloff and Peter Kassig, and British aid workers David Haines and Alan Henning.

They also held British journalist John Cantlie, who is missing presumed dead.

Britain has removed both Kotey and el-Sheikh’s citizenship, and they are both now believed to be in the custody of US special forces in Iraq.

A former British military intelligence officer said: “Justice in the States for Kotey and el-Sheikh will not be about rehabilitation, but serious punishment and revenge.

“Theirs will be a life of aching drudgery and boredom. The supermax strips away any comfort and distraction. It will be their worst nightmare.

“In many ways being locked up for the rest of your life in a featureless and excruciatingly monotonous place is for some people a fate worse than the death penalty.

“They will be staring at white walls penning them in, with very few personal belongings, access to the outside world and absolutely no choice about their movements from one minute to the next.”

Kotey and el-Sheikh face life imprisonment in the USA for crimes against humanity and terrorist offences.


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