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Aine Davis: What's next for the alleged Islamic State 'Beatle'?

Charged in a London court following his deportation from Turkey, Davis's pre-trial hearing begins on 2 September
Aine Davis is facing several terrorism charges after landing at Luton Airport on Wednesday (Social media)
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London

Aine Davis was charged in a London court on Thursday morning on offences relating to the funding of terrorism and possession of a firearm for a purpose connected to terrorism, after being deported from Turkey.

The 38-year-old Londoner has long been accused of being a part of the “Beatles” Islamic State group (IS) cell, so-called by their hostages because the four disguised members had English accents. Davis has always denied the allegations.

What has he been charged with?

Davis faces one charge of inviting another to provide money for use in acts of terrorism, one for arranging the availability of property for the purposes of terrorism and one for possessing a firearm for a purpose connected to terrorism.

In court this morning, Davis did not indicate whether he would plead guilty or not guilty to the charges he faces.

Davis travelled to Syria in July 2013 following his conversion to Islam, the court heard. It is there that he is alleged to have joined other militant fighters.

The court heard on Thursday that Davis had asked his wife Amal el-Wahabi to “smuggle 20,000 euros in her knickers” to him in Turkey.

Britain’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) authorised London’s Metropolitan Police to charge Davis with terrorism offences in 2014.

What happens next?

The next time Davis will be in court is 2 September, when he will appear at the Old Bailey in central London for a pre-trial hearing. 

Middle East Eye understands that, as with most suspects charged with terrorism offences, Davis will not be released on bail.

While many alleged members of the Islamic State and other militant groups who are perceived to be eligible for a second nationality have had their British citizenship stripped, Davis, whose father is from The Gambia, has not.

Who were 'the Beatles'?

"The Beatles" was a nickname given to an IS execution cell of British militants responsible for the torture and murder of western hostages in Syria, according to captives who were later released by the group and subsquently widely reported in the media.

Mohammed Emwazi, a Kuwaiti-born British national who became known as "Jihadi John", was killed in a US drone strike in Raqqa, Syria, in November 2015.

Two other alleged members of the gang were captured in Syria and taken to the US.

Alexanda Kotey was sentenced in April 2022 to life imprisonment after he pleaded guilty to eight criminal charges, including lethal hostage-taking. El Shafee Elsheikh was also found guilty by a US court of lethal hostage-taking and conspiracy to commit murder.

Davis has previously denied being part of the group.