Spectacular escape from Japan Aides from top manager Ghosn confess
Status: 14.06.2021 4:13 p.m.
You are said to have helped smuggle the former car manager Ghosn in a suitcase from Japan to Lebanon: Two accomplices confessed to helping people escape. The US citizens face three years in prison. Actually, the former Renault boss Carlos Ghosn was supposed to face a lawsuit in Tokyo on charges of serious embezzlement of funds, instead he managed a somewhat spectacular escape on board a private jet – in a music case. He had accomplices: two Americans, father and son, have now confessed to helping them escape. At the beginning of the trial in Tokyo, they admitted the accusations of the public prosecutor’s office: According to them, the 60-year-old Michael T. and his 28-year-old son Peter first created the escape plan and finally made it possible to escape. A third alleged helper from Lebanon is still on the run.
“Maybe there is a young woman in there”
Michael T. is a former elite US Army soldier who works in the private security services sector. According to the US prosecutor, he is said to have traveled to Japan several times and met Ghosn there at least seven times. According to Japanese media, his son Peter is said to have received 144 million yen – equivalent to just under 1.1 million euros – from the Ghosn family for the help. The accused used most of the money to prepare for the escape, including for the private jet. They denied being specifically paid for their help. The court re-elaborated the details of the escape – how Ghosn was hidden in the suitcase intended for musical equipment, holes drilled in to give the ex-manager a breath. How the three escape helpers pretended to be musicians and thus outwitted baggage control at the airport. And as one of the airport staff joked about the weight of the suitcase: “Maybe there is a young woman in there.”
Other escape helpers have already been convicted
At the end of February, a court in Istanbul had already sentenced three Turkish citizens to several years in prison for conspiracy to smuggle a migrant. Among them were the two pilots who are said to have flown the machine with Ghosn on board initially from Tokyo to Istanbul, from where he continued his flight to Lebanon. In Japan, Ghosn was actually waiting for his trial before he fled. He was arrested there in November 2018. The judiciary accuses him, among other things, of having transferred private losses to the Japanese automaker Nissan, which is allied with the French automaker Renault, and of having misappropriated company capital. Since his escape, the disgraced car manager has remained in Lebanon and is not allowed to leave the country. However, Lebanon does not expel its citizens, which is why the Japanese judiciary has no access to Ghosn. In addition to two others, he also has Lebanese citizenship. There are also investigations against Ghosn in France. Among other things, it is about the possibly illegal financing of two lavish parties at Versailles Palace.