| 24 May 2024, Friday |

Prosecutors in Japan are seeking nearly 3 years in prison for Ghosn’s escape accomplices

Prosecutors in Japan announced on Friday that they are seeking nearly three years in prison for an American father-son combination who admitted to assisting former Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn in jumping bail and fleeing Japan.

Prosecutors have asked a Tokyo court to sentence former special forces agent Michael Taylor to two years and ten months in prison, and his son Peter to two years and six months.

“Michael Taylor… performed a pivotal role in the film. One of the prosecutors described Ghosn’s “extraordinary” December 2019 escape as a “sophisticated and brazen crime,” adding that “his responsibility is exceedingly grave.” “..

“The case seriously harmed our country’s criminal justice system,” he continued.

Since their arrest in May 2020 in the United States for assisting in the smuggling of Ghosn onto a private plane in an audio equipment case so he could fly to Lebanon, which has no extradition deal with Japan, the Taylors have been held in detention.

Ghosn had headed Nissan for over two decades, garnering celebrity status as a rare foreign leader to succeed in Japan — until he was arrested in 2018 on financial crimes charges, which he denies.

The Taylors were extradited to Japan earlier this year, where they faced a maximum sentence of three years in prison apiece.

They initially appeared in court last month, where they admitted to assisting Ghosn in his daring escape.

Earlier this week, the Taylors said they now “regret” their role in Ghosn’s escape, bowing deeply in court as they apologized, according to local media.

The former car magnate, who is now a wanted international fugitive in Lebanon, was out on bail while awaiting trial on four counts of financial malfeasance when he bolted, passing through Turkey on his way to Lebanon.

For Japanese officials, the escape was a great embarrassment. It was dubbed “one of the most brazen and well-orchestrated escape actions in recent history” by US prosecutors.

Ghosn was questioned by French authorities in Lebanon last month about a litany of alleged financial misdeeds.

Greg Kelly, a former Nissan staffer, is on trial in Tokyo on charges of assisting Ghosn in underreporting his remuneration. In his case, a decision is likely later this year.

  • AFP