During El Shafee Elsheikh’s terrorism trial a former hostage detailed the horrific torture the ruthless ISIS executioners dubbed “The Beatles” did to them.
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As part of his captors’ horrific “regime of punishment,” an Italian aid worker held captive by merciless ISIS executioners dubbed “The Beatles” said he was forced to fight other hostages until they passed out.
Federico Motka, who was held captive for 14 months by ISIS’ British-born executioners, testified about his ordeal during El Shafee Elsheikh’s terrorism trial on Thursday. El Shafee Elsheikh is a British national accused of masterminding a kidnapping scheme that took more than 20 Western hostages between 2012 and 2015.
Motka, who was apprehended near the Turkish-Syrian border in 2013, claimed that hostages were thrown into a facility known as “the box,” where they were tortured and treated as animals.
“They gave us dog names.” To avoid a beating, he recalled, “we needed to come and immediately respond” to the name.
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American journalists James Foley and Steven Soloff, as well as aid workers Peter Kassig and Kayla Mueller, were among the captives held by the gang.
At Elsheikh’s trial in Alexandria, Virginia, Motka is the first surviving hostage to testify.
The aid worker told the court how his captors, whom they dubbed John, George, and Ringo because of their British accents, subjected their captives to a lengthy “regime of punishment.”
According to Motka, he was taken into a room at “the box” with Foley and another British hostage, John Cantile, to engage in a “Royal Rumble”-style brawl.
Motka testified, “They were super excited about it.” ” We were so weak and shattered we could barely lift our arms.”
The group was told that the losers would be waterboarded, and two of the forced combatants passed out during the 60-minute battle, according to Motka.
The aid worker said that he was declared the loser but instead suffered a beating rather than being waterboarded, despite being subjected to the harsh form of torture at prior occasions during his imprisonment.
According to Motka, another man known as “The Punisher” tortured them on a regular basis.
According to CNN, Motka, who was rescued in May 2014, said he was beaten with a cable throughout his imprisonment.
“There wasn’t a minute’s peace,” he added.
Prosecutors have testified in court that Elsheikh is the kidnapper known as Ringo.
Motka admitted that distinguishing his kidnappers was difficult because they took great pains to hide their faces, but he attempted to distinguish them based on their punishment preferences.
Motka testified, “George was more into boxing.” “John, he kicked a lot. Ringo used to talk how he liked wrestling. He would put people in headlocks.”
In their opening arguments, Virginia prosecutors mentioned three British nationals: Elsheikh, Alexanda Amon Kotey, and Mohammed Emwazi, dubbed “Jihadi John.”
Emwazi was killed in a drone attack, while Kotey pled guilty in September in Virginia and was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
The four Americans who were also kidnapped and held captive were all killed. Before being killed Mueller was forced into slavery and raped by Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi while Foley, Sotloff, and Kassig were beheaded.