Turkey detains 7 in probe into Ghosn fleeing bail in Japan

International
Carlos Ghosn

FILE – In this May 11, 2012, file photo, then Nissan Motor Co. President and CEO Carlos Ghosn speak during a press conference in Yokohama, near Tokyo. A close friend says Monday, Dec. 30, 2019 that Ghosn, who is awaiting trial in Japan, has arrived in Beirut. It was not clear how Ghosn, who is of Lebanese origins, left Japan where he is under surveillance and is expected to face trial in April 2020. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara, File)

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ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkish authorities have detained seven people as part of an investigation into how former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn, who skipped bail in Japan, was able to flee to Lebanon via Istanbul, Turkish media reported Thursday.

The state-run Anadolu Agency said the seven people are suspected of aiding Ghosn. NTV television said the probe was launched by launched by Turkey’s Interior Ministry.

The private DHA news agency reports that those detained are 4 pilots, a cargo company manager and two airport workers.

Ghosn fled to Lebanon this week before his trial in Japan on financial misconduct charges. Turkish media reports said he flew to Lebanon on a private jet via Istanbul.

Lebanon has said that Ghosn entered the country legally and there was no reason to take action against him.

Japan does not have an extradition treaty with Lebanon.

Ghosn, who was charged with under-reporting his future compensation and a breach of trust, has repeatedly asserted his innocence. He says Japanese authorities trumped up the charges to prevent a possible fuller merger between Nissan Motor Co. and alliance partner Renault SA. Before his arrest, Ghosn was chairman of both Nissan and Renault.

His 1.5 billion yen ($14 million) bail that Ghosn posted on two separate instances to get out of detention is being revoked.

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