Posted 4 июля 2020, 20:59

Published 4 июля 2020, 20:59

Modified 24 декабря 2022, 22:37

Updated 24 декабря 2022, 22:37

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Seven on one bench: the saviors of the head of Renault Nissan Carlos Gon are being tried in Istanbul

4 июля 2020, 20:59
Фото: Twitter
In Istanbul, a trial began over 7 airline employees who helped make the escape from Tokyo to Beirut to former Renault Nissan president Carlos Ghosn, who was under house arrest in the Japanese capital. American prosecutors have called this operation "the most arrogant escape of recent history."

Elena Ivanova

Five suspects were in jail before the trial, where there are already 82 confirmed cases of Coveid infections, writes FT. They were arrested in January of this year on charges of smuggling people. They face 8 years in prison. Two stewardesses are accused of failure to report, but they were immediately released from custody. All seven played a key role in the operation to free Gon before the upcoming trial in Japan, where he is accused of financial fraud. Ghosn denies all these allegations. Today, Tokyo prosecutors sent a request for the extradition of two organizers from the United States, which, according to the prosecution, organized a secret transportation of former President Nissan in a large black wardrobe trunk.

Michael Taylor, a former US Green Beret (US Special Forces designed for guerrilla warfare and covert operations - NI) and his son, were arrested in May in Boston after they returned from Lebanon. Their lawyers contested extradition, since escaping bail is not considered a crime in Japan. But the Japanese insist on their own. “We will fully assist the American authorities to extradite them as soon as possible,” the Tokyo prosecutor’s press release said.

All seven Turkish defendants worked for a private charter company, part of a large Turkish airline group. The group admitted that its employees and two aircraft carried Gon from Osaka to Istanbul, and from there to Lebanon, but did not plead guilty. The company accused Operations Manager Okan Cozeman of concluding this contract without the knowledge of the general management. Pilots also do not admit their guilt. They really flew to Osaka on a Bombardier Global Express plane, but refused to admit that they knew about the secret passenger. One of the pilots even declared that it was a “regular flight”. The pilots of the second plane that brought Gon to Beirut testified that they had seen the passenger, but did not know who he was.

The MNG operations manager told the court that an intermediary from Lebanon ordered all flights. According to the manager, the intermediary forbade the manager to inform anyone that Carlos Ghosn was aboard the aircraft and threatened him and his family. Checking the bank accounts of pilots and stewardesses did not reveal any suspicious movement of funds on them. The manager made two payments of 216 and 66 thousand euros for 6 months before the fateful flight, although his annual salary is only 66 thousand. The manager denied the connection of the payment with the Gon case, allegedly this money was paid to him by a client from Venezuela. However, the accused could not provide documents.

According to RBC, Carlos Ghosn was detained in Japan two years ago on charges of concealing income in the amount of $ 80 million, as well as writing off personal losses of $ 16 million to Nissan. Ghosn himself stated that he was running "not from justice, but from injustice." According to lawyer Gon, the scandal between Europe and Japan was the real reason for his persecution . They say that before his arrest, Ghosn received a task from his French shareholders, primarily from the French state, to prepare a complete merger of Renault and Nissan-Mitsubishi, which caused resistance from Japanese shareholders. Ghosn had a reputation as a manager who ruthlessly cut costs, including salaries and jobs. For unions, it has become a symbol of a greedy Western manager who has no place in the traditionalist Japanese system. This applies primarily to the Mitsubishi. Therefore, the purchase of Mitsubishi by Carlos Ghosn was a loss of face for the Japanese, despite the fact that Ghosn saved another Japanese brand, Nissan, from bankruptcy. Both in Japan and in Europe, Gon had many envious people. However, observers had many questions in the Tokyo prosecutor's office and its independence from the state.