Ghosn’s Great Escape – Turkey Arrests Pilots Over Ex-Nissan Chairman’s Illegal Transit Through Istanbul
Earlier this week, we provided several updates on the status of Carlos Ghosn, the ousted Nissan boss and now an international fugitive, who fled Japan to Lebanon on Monday to escape what he called a “rigged” justice system. Here is the latest.
The former Nissan chairman, who is facing trial in Tokyo for alleged financial crimes, landed in Beirut on Monday via a private jet operated by a subsidiary of Turkey’s MNG Holding, said Bloomberg, citing a senior Turkish official. The official said Ghosn first landed in Istanbul via an MNG aircraft on Monday morning and was transferred to another airplane headed to Lebanon.
🇯🇵🇱🇧🇹🇷 Carlos Ghosn in Beirut : seven arrests in Turkey, including 4 MNG Jet pilots. pic.twitter.com/acX6iztkvI
— air plus news (english) (@airplusnews_EN) January 2, 2020
Government officials in Lebanon said Ghosn entered legally on a French passport. Ghosn’s Japanese lawyers were unaware of the smuggling and said he had given up three passports under the terms of his bail. However, he was able to keep a spare French passport.
Turkish broadcaster NTV said on Thursday, Turkish police arrested seven people in connection to the smuggling, including four pilots. Meanwhile, Japanese authorities raided Ghosn’s Tokyo home on Thursday.
Ghosn’s great escape to Lebanon is primarily due to the country has no extradition agreement with Japan. It’s also his home country where he has substantial investments in real estate.
Reuters noted that sources said Ghosn met with Lebanese President Michel Aoun after landing in Beirut and received a warm welcome.
Turkish authorities are attempting to shed some light on the interworkings of how to smuggle a top executive across the world, even though he’d been stripped of his primary passports.