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Ex-Nissan Boss Jumps Bail, Somehow Flees Japan

'I have escaped injustice,' Ghosn says
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 31, 2019 3:34 AM CST
Ex-Nissan Boss Jumps Bail, Flees Japan
Junichiro Hironaka, right, lawyer for Nissan's former chairman Carlos Ghosn, gestures to the media as he heads to his office in Tokyo, Tuesday, Dec. 31, 2019.   (Naoya Osato/Kyodo News via AP)

(Newser) – Authorities in Japan might be regretting their decision to grant bail to former Nissan and Renault chief Carlos Ghosn earlier this year. He has fled the country and is now in Lebanon, which does not extradite its citizens, the Wall Street Journal reports. It's not clear how Ghosn managed to get out of Japan, but his departure was apparently a big surprise to his attorney, Junichiro Hironaka. The lawyer says he last saw Ghosn on Dec. 25. Hironaka says he still has Ghosn's Lebanese, Brazilian, and French passports, and he believes it must have taken a "big organization" to get him out of the country.

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Ghosn, who was born in Brazil to Lebanese parents, was arrested in November last year and charged with financial misconduct. In a statement released Monday after he arrived in Beirut, where he has a home, Ghosn said he "will no longer be held hostage by a rigged Japanese justice system," the Japan Times reports. "I have not fled justice," he said. "I have escaped injustice and political persecution." The 65-year-old posted bail of 1 billion yen—$8.9 million—in March and was under strict bail conditions that included not leaving the country. His trial was expected to begin in April. According to reports in Lebanese media, he arrived in the country on a private jet from Turkey. (Read more Carlos Ghosn stories.)

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