British and American anti-terror authorities say they know the identity of the masked man who killed James Foley and Steven Sotloff, and are set to reveal it within the coming days.
The news comes as police prepare to arrest up to 12 British associates of the extremist executioner, who is one of four British jihadists in Syria who have been nicknamed “the Beatles”.
Defence sources told the Mirror that a team of FBI agents, who are currently in Britain, are about to swoop on the 12 UK-based suspects, who they suspect of supplying Jihadi John with money, as well as helping him travel to Syria.
The suspects, who described as “hardened extremists”, are believed to be based in the West Midlands, and have been connected to previous foiled terror plots.
American sources told the paper: “It has been a co-ordinated effort to track down the support network around the British Islamic State executioner. Our inquiries have given us leads across the country.
“We are 99.9 percent certain now as to who ‘John’ is but investigators have had to tread softly in charting and approaching his wider network in the UK.
“This approach has been successful in helping to collate evidence and possibly pinpoint the target’s location in Syria. Familiar names of what can only be described as hardened extremists with a jihadi background have cropped up in this investigation.
“I expect an official announcement disclosing the executioner’s identity will be made in the coming days and it is only a matter of time before we bring him in.”
Authorities are now in desperate attempt to track down the group of Jihadists in Syria before they kill British hostage David Haines.
At the end of the video of Sotloff’s murder, Haines was named as the next hostage who the group intend to kill. He is believed to have already been severely tortured and tasered several times.
An associate who was kidnapped at the same time as him, Federico Motka, was freed four months ago after a ransom was paid.