Carlos Ghosn Photo: REUTERS file
crime

U.S. says Ghosn wired $862,500 to man who helped him flee Japan

46 Comments

Carlos Ghosn, the former Nissan Motor Co chairman, wired $862,500 last year to a company managed by one of the two men who later helped him escape from Japan, U.S. prosecutors said in a Tuesday court filing.

The disclosure came less than a day after the men, Michael Taylor and his son Peter Taylor, who are trying to avoid extradition to Japan in connection with Ghosn's escape, petitioned a U.S. judge to release them on bail.

Lawyers for the Taylors said they have been held for more than six weeks at the Norfolk County Correctional Center in Massachusetts, where 36 inmates and staff have tested positive for COVID-19, based on flawed arrest warrants and extradition requests.

"Neither is a risk of flight and there are undoubtedly conditions under which they can be released," the lawyers wrote.

Ghosn fled last December to Beirut from Japan, where he had been under house arrest on charges of financial crimes he has denied, by being smuggled in a box to a private jet.

Lebanon does not have an extradition treaty with Japan.

Tuesday's filing in Massachusetts federal court shows wire transfers last October of $540,000 and $322,500 from a bank account in Paris to Promote Fox LLC, a company managed by Peter Taylor and a brother.

The filing does not say how much the Taylors were paid, but prosecutors said it reflects "additional evidence" that they have the resources to flee, and should remain detained as"flight risks."

Michael Taylor is a U.S. Army Special Forces veteran and private security specialist.

In a ruling on Tuesday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Donald Cabell rejected the Taylors' bid to quash their arrest warrants, with a written order to follow. He has not ruled on their bail requests.

A lawyer for the Taylors declined to comment on the wire transfers.

© Thomson Reuters 2020.

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

46 Comments
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...and the saga continues.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Very low price to pay for your freedom.

Money well invested.

15 ( +20 / -5 )

"Neither is a risk of flight and there are undoubtedly conditions under which they can be released," the lawyers wrote."

The lawyer may have as well as called the Judge an idiot. These guys specialize in "flight" as a profession.

13 ( +15 / -2 )

Money well spent. Wonder if he can put it on his tax report as a working expense and get it deducted?

19 ( +20 / -1 )

Wonder if he can put it on his tax report as a working expense and get it deducted?

Sound like a legitimate deduction to me. Job related and all.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

Ghosn is a criminal under Japaneses law and he escaped Japan illegally. He should be returned to Japan and face the Japanese legal system.

-26 ( +12 / -38 )

@Hawkeye

Have you been in an obscure cave the last 6 months?

After 180+ days of detention he had no trial date yet.

Adding to that scaping bail is not a crime in Japan.

How is Ghosn a criminal?

14 ( +24 / -10 )

@Hawkeye

He can’t be a ‘criminal’ as it never got to trial so nothing was ever proven in a court of law. Call him what you want but you can’t call him a ‘criminal’ (or ‘guilty’) at this stage.

21 ( +28 / -7 )

Ghosn is a criminal under Japaneses law and he escaped Japan illegally. He should be returned to Japan and face the Japanese legal system.

If it's true justice there should be no arrest for Ghosn in the first place but here he was, waiting trial that always be extended from time to time.

9 ( +13 / -4 )

JapanoobToday 06:02 pm JST

He can’t be a ‘criminal’ as it never got to trial so nothing was ever proven in a court of law. Call him what you want but you can’t call him a ‘criminal’ (or ‘guilty’) at this stage.

No Ghosn is a criminal and a convict since he had jumped bail which is a crime in itself.

-13 ( +10 / -23 )

That's as strange amount of money! But well spent considering he was never going to get close to a fair trial, and justice had left via the back door.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

He is charged with not reporting an income that was based on future earnings, as was common practice amongst all the top executive people at Nissan, Toyota,Mitsubishi. He didn't kill anyone, he was singled out because he was a foreigner and Prosecutors fell in line with Nissan back stabbing executives who got emumity for exactly the same thing..if anything Prosecuters should explain WHY they charged a person based solely on a secret report that contained no evidence usable in court, fell back on tourture to save their reputation then he is gone. What's not to understand?

10 ( +13 / -3 )

By the way when is Kelly's trial?

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Kelly, he is going to cop it. That's the Japanese system of justice, guilt, punishment by association, can't get the man huge punishment for the one they have. It's a very sad state of affairs.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Kelly's trial years away as there is no actual evidence. That's embarrassing.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

He can’t be a ‘criminal’ as it never got to trial so nothing was ever proven in a court of law. Call him what you want but you can’t call him a ‘criminal’ (or ‘guilty’) at this stage.

You forget that Japan operates under a "guilty until proven innocent" principle - this much is obvious whenever having dialogue with Japanese people on the matter.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

How did he do that if he was incarcerated, and then unable to access the web while on bail?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Ghosn is a wealthy, connected individual who used his wealth and influence to secure his freedom. I prefer that to the other individuals in industry and government who use their wealth and influence to disenfranchise me, regressively tax me, and aggregate public funds to bailout themselves and cronies in a crisis while saying it is for the public good.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Kelly's trial years away as there is no actual evidence. That's embarrassing.

You might be right.

Kelly's trial has been postponed time and time again... Now, 19 months after his arrest, the trial hasn't started yet.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I'm just glad Nissan is going down for what they did, and the Tokyo Prosecutors are being a laughing stock internationally. They didn't think this through, so now they pay the price. Meanwhile, Ghosn is free and still rich. May not be the retirement he was expecting but that's his fault for trusting Japan.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

He can’t be a ‘criminal’ as it never got to trial so nothing was ever proven in a court of law. Call him what you want but you can’t call him a ‘criminal’ (or ‘guilty’) at this stage.

No Ghosn is a criminal and a convict since he had jumped bail which is a crime in itself

Actually you are incorrect it is apparently not illegal to jump bail in Japan, And since this instance Lawmakers are now thinking about changing the law, However he is guilty of the crime of illegal departure Article 71 Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act which is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 1 year or a fine not exceeding 300,000 yen (about $2,789.91)

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Neither is a risk of flight and there are undoubtedly conditions under which they can be released,"

Their job is organized flight, duh. Wasn’t Ghosn the same risk?

they need 10 yrs. and the main man needs to stand trial in Japan, France and The Nederland's.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Criky ...spot on mate

3 ( +4 / -1 )

So all my opponents say it is not legal to return him to face charges in Japan??? When you're rich you can get off easy!! Come on and get a life.

-7 ( +4 / -11 )

So all my opponents say it is not legal to return him to face charges in Japan

Yes, he should come back to Japan to "prove his innocence". Exact definition of Japan's Injustice system coming from the mouth of the Justice Minister, twice.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

$862K is a cheap price to win his freedom.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Prove it. Intelligent people.do not believe in just talk.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

"How did he do that if he was incarcerated, and then unable to access the web while on bail?"

He was on house arrest, not in jail but perhaps his wife could answer that question.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Many crybabies defending that criminal rat..

Like Hawkeye said, "get a life"..

LOOOOOOOOL !!!!!..

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

Maybe they asked for $1 million but Ghosn knocked them down to $862,500 plus a couple of Nissan GTRs.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

You forget that Japan operates under a "guilty until proven innocent" principle - this much is obvious whenever having dialogue with Japanese people on the matter.

No it doesn't. The legal system here, as in many western countries, presumes innocence over guilt.

If you're talking about members of the populace presuming guilt over innocence, you find that in every country - even the ones whose legal systems presume innocence over guilt.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

he should come back to Japan to "prove his innocence"

From his standpoint, what would be the benefit of doing so?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Ghosn is a criminal under Japaneses law and he escaped Japan illegally. He should be returned to Japan and face the Japanese legal system.

fair statement, but also those Nissan staff that colluded with the the ministry of Justice in Japan should also be investigated for illegal doings as well. Last I checked it was illegal for a private company to seek the government help in outsing their shareholder elected leaders. I find it very difficult to believe that no laws were broken by Nissan even for Japan justice

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The legal system here, as in many western countries, presumes innocence over guilt.

Except that never happens in practice. As the Justice Minister said twice, Ghosn should "prove his innocence".

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Ghosn is a criminal under Japaneses law and he escaped Japan illegally.

He hasn't been found guilty of any crimes, so he is not a criminal, he's a suspect.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

"Heh, someone didn't like my pointing out the fact that the Japanese legal system presumes innocence over guilt. I guess it bothered them that I destroyed their narrative, but their lack of a comment after downvoting shows that they were angry that I was right, not downvoting me for being wrong."

While the standard of presumed innocence is written into Japanese law, their system is very different from the British based legal system used in the US. For one thing, Japan does not have a jury system. Juries were tried in 1928 and outlawed in 1943. A 2019 law established a system where there are six "lay judges" and three professional judges in a panel that acts much like a jury in the US or UK, however at least one professional judge must agree with the verdict of the six lay judges and these panels are only used for the most serious crimes such as murder. For the sorts of crimes Carlos Ghosn is accused of no jury would hear the case and a Judge would make the decision to convict or acquit. If history is a guide, 99% of all cases brought to trial lead to conviction, calling into question both the independence and impartiality of the Japanese judiciary. Their judges publicly state they feel they can accurately judge the veracity of the defense. In practice they almost always side with the prosecution. In addition prosecutors are allowed to suspend the prosecution of cases they think are weak. Roughly 60% of cases later suspended by the prosecutors when their evidence starts to look weak. Japanese judges are unlike US or UK judges. Where US and UK judges are neutral referees during a trial, Japanese judges take an active part in collecting and weighing evidence and questioning people. On top of that Japanese police use interrogation tactics and rules of evidence that would be grossly illegal under the US or UK legal system. One may be detained for up to 23 days without a prosecutor filing charges during which police may interrogate for more than ten hours a day every day of those 23 days without an attorney present. In fact the suspect will be denied access to an attorney even if they demand one. The suspect will be denied food, water or bathroom breaks during interrogation. The police will try to get suspects to sign confessions. They basically wear people down to obtain a confession and use this in court to gain a conviction. The Japanese police and prosecutors typically do not do a detailed investigation to collect evidence before making an arrest. They instead rely on coerced confessions and hope their relentless interrogations yield evidence for them. They in fact do not know how to conduct investigations in the manner or US or some other western law enforcement agencies. And where an involuntary confession is inadmissible in a US court, they are very much admissible in a Japanese court.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

While the standard of presumed innocence is written into Japanese law, their system is very different from the British based legal system used in the US.

Regardless, the point is that the Japanese legal system presumes innocent over guilt. That is why arrests are not written to a person's criminal record, as they have not been found guilty, and are presumed innocent. It's only when found guilty of a crime that the crime is written to their record, due to their being presumed innocent until a court finds them guilty.

People can go on about how the system is biased against those arrested - and I'd agree with them on a lot of points. But that's a separate issue - I've pointed out that Japan presumes innocent until proven guilty in a court of law, and some people's opinions don't change that fact.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@D Tortoise,

All you've said can be subsumed to a simple dichotomy:

Napoleonic Continental systems of Law, (Japanese) versus Common Law systems, (USA & UK).

Almost everything you posted can be found here:

"Criminal Procedure in Common law legal system versus Criminal Procedure in Continental legal system

Continental and common law systems vary substantially in criminal procedure. In continental legal system the judge is the person who actively participates in determining the facts of the case using inquisitorial system while investigating major crimes in most continental system countries. Furthermore, the emphasis on written argument weights more rather than the oral one. The inquisitorial system of criminal procedure is accepted in such countries as Germany and France, yet Italy and Spain attempts to converge inquisitorial and adversarial styles practiced in the systems of common law. The primary difference between the models of creating the criminal process lies in the rationalization of the aims of the process. The former believes that the criminal process is the key to resolution of a disagreement between the accuser who mostly acts as the prosecutor and the guilty where the necessity of documentary evidence occurs in that case when it is important for solving the dispute. However, the latter tries to find the truth of the happened incident and the judge is mostly dependent on documentary evidence. Furthermore, jury is considered in criminal procedure only in Common legal system, while that in Continental legal system does not play a significant role. In common law legal system, the trial judge, the investigators and the prosecution are separate functions. When an investigation has been accomplished, the trial judge supervises proceedings grounded in the adversarial system of dispute resolution, where both the prosecution and the defense prepare arguments to be presented before the court. In some continental legal system countries, the adversarial procedures have been adopted as well. The advocates of each system tend to believe that their system defends best the rights of the innocent. There is a trend in common law countries to think that continental law or inquisitorial systems do not possess the so-called “presumption of innocence”, and do not provide the defense with sufficient rights. By contrast, there is a tendency in countries with an inquisitorial system to consider that accusatorial proceedings excessively favor rich defendants who can afford large legal teams, and are very harsh on financially disabled defendants. [7"

"https://www.lawteacher.net/free-law-essays/constitutional-law/contrast-between-common-and-continental-legal-systems-constitutional-law-essay.php"

Evidently there are two different systems at play here.

Which one is better, if there's such a thing!

While you appear to be favouring USA & UK approach(s) you must remember that Japan is not either of them; Japan operates and his regulated under the Civil System.

Just because you'd rather they follow "your rules" it doesn't necessarily mean they'll comply.

I was trained in the UK; obviously I would say "our system is better".

But is it really?

I won't be back for replies.

We've just had the Covid-19 restrictions lifted, thus I'm hitting the town to enjoy "meself".

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Strangerland wrote:

I guess it bothered them that I destroyed their narrative, but their lack of a comment after downvoting shows that they were angry that I was right, not downvoting me for being wrong.

Desert Tortoise detailed response.............................

Strangerland's response:

> Regardless, the point is that the Japanese legal system presumes innocent over guilt. 

LOL! Yeah, someone is definitely getting destroyed and it is not Desert Tortoise. What a weak comeback!

I won't be back for replies.

We've just had the Covid-19 restrictions lifted, thus I'm hitting the town to enjoy "meself".

Enjoy that unfortunate forthcoming spike!

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Ghosn choose Nissan and Japan. No one forced him to do so. In fact he was making massive amounts of money for his incompetence and bringing Nissan high quality to low and mediocre over small savings, nickle and dime everything was his solution.

When he benefited and was making huge amounts of money. No problem staying in Japan, benefitting.

When he brakes the law and knows his guilty what does he do? Run away.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Ghosn choose Nissan and Japan. No one forced him to do so. In fact he was making massive amounts of money for his incompetence

Ghosn accepted the impossible mission of revamp Nissan from Bankruptcy, and he succeeded against all odds.

He could go to General Motors for 3x the salary, but he felt compelled to help Nissan instead.

I see Ghosn as the best CEO that Nissan ever had, and the actual struggling of the company after Ghosn era just confirms how important he was.

The Japanese killed Nissan, not Ghosn.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"Regardless, the point is that the Japanese legal system presumes innocent over guilt. That is why arrests are not written to a person's criminal record, as they have not been found guilty, and are presumed innocent. It's only when found guilty of a crime that the crime is written to their record, due to their being presumed innocent until a court finds them guilty."

Japanese prosecutors rely on confessions of the accused to generate evidence to use against them in a trial. Regardless of what their laws say, their prosecutors assume the accused is guilty and will eventually admit their guilt. Their prosecutors and police are not in the habit of conducting detailed investigations that generate admissible evidence prior to making the arrest. They pretty much never do such investigations. Instead they rely on brutal interrogation techniques that are illegal in most developed nations to coerce "confessions" out of the accused. They also rely on their judges to believe the prosecutors. There are no juries aside from serious violent crimes to hear cases such as the case against Carlos Ghosn, weigh the evidence and produce a verdict. Prosecutors assume they will enter court with a confession obtained through harsh interrogation and a guilty verdict is a foregone conclusion.

Carlos Ghosn never admitted guilt, never confessed and in fact fought back against his prosecution. The Japanese prosecutors were utterly unprepared for this. They literally have no idea how to go forward with a successful prosecution absent his cooperation (coerced confession) but the case has such a high public profile they cannot be seen to back down. Japanese prosecutors met someone far stronger than they are.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Do the file taxes in Lebanon? love to know what category it goes under?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Well it doesn't matter, HE is FREE after all, so who cares how much it cost him.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Their prosecutors and police are not in the habit of conducting detailed investigations that generate admissible evidence prior to making the arrest. They pretty much never do such investigations.

The prosecutors do not do the investigating. The police do.

Japanese prosecutors rely on confessions of the accused to generate evidence to use against them in a trial. Regardless of what their laws say, their prosecutors assume the accused is guilty and will eventually admit their guilt.

Yes, that is how it works in most western legal systems as well. The police investigate and make arrests, and pass the results of the investigations to prosecutors, who decide based on the results of the investigation whether or not they will proceed with a trial.

As they only take cases to trial they believe they can win, of course this means they presume guilt. They have to, otherwise it would be prosecutorial misconduct as they would be taking a case to trial on a defendant they dind't believe to be guilty.

Instead they rely on brutal interrogation techniques that are illegal in most developed nations to coerce "confessions" out of the accused.

I have some major issues around this - not allowing lawyers present during questioning, and not recording full confessions are two major issues in my books - but I do question your use of the world 'brutal', generally this refers to something physical. Are you saying the police beat confessions out of people?

But, back to my original point:

the point is that the Japanese legal system presumes innocent over guilt. That is why arrests are not written to a person's criminal record, as they have not been found guilty, and are presumed innocent. It's only when found guilty of a crime that the crime is written to their record, due to their being presumed innocent until a court finds them guilty.

This still stands. Prosecutors can presume guilt all they want, that does not make the person guilty, nor does it write anything to their record. And while Japan has an suspiciously high conviction rate, which I believe is partially due to a system highly weighted towards the prosecution over the defendant, there are other factors that contribute to the high conviction rate; one being that criminal cases can be settled out of court by the victim and the attacker, the other, quite relevant one, is that prosecutors will not prosecute a case they're not sure they can win.

TLDR; The Japanese legal system presumes innocence over guilt - aka people are innocent until proven guilty.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The prosecutors do not do the investigating. The police do.

That's not entirely true: prosecutors can do the investigating as well.

The police investigate and make arrests, and pass the results of the investigations to prosecutors, who decide based on the results of the investigation whether or not they will proceed with a trial.

In Japan its so different... Police don't look for any evidence, they just look-up a target and force confession.

The confession, voluntary or forced is the main evidence on trial.

No other western country would ever use a confession as evidence, its outrageous.

 Are you saying the police beat confessions out of people?

Police can, and do use violence on the interrogations. Its so common that everybody takes it as normal.

Prosecutors can presume guilt all they want, that does not make the person guilty

The prosecutor decides that the defendant is guilty, the judges will just determine the penalty.

Most judges have never signed an innocent deal in their entire career, and never will.

The real evil is that even when you're innocent its much better confess culpability, or else you're gonna get 180+ days of detention and no bail for years, just like our friend Carlos.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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