Two Americans Sentenced to Prison for Role in Nissan Smuggling

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TOKYO β€” A Japanese court on Monday sentenced two Americans to prison for their roles in helping ex-Nissan leader Carlos Ghosn bail and escape from Japan.

Michael Taylor, 60, was sentenced to two years in prison, and his 28-year-old son, Peter Maxwell Taylor, was sentenced to one year and eight months. The men helped smuggle Mr. Ghosn into a private jet and take him to Lebanon while he awaits trial in Japan on charges of financial misconduct.

Man accepted their role On the run during a trial in Tokyo in June. While delivering the sentence, the judge said his actions had done “extreme damage” to the Japanese justice system and the time spent in prison was “inevitable”, according to local reports.

Mr. Ghosn fled Japan just before New Year’s Day in 2019. He was released on bail after being arrested several times, believing that Japan’s justice system would never give him a fair trial.

The Taylors helped him devise and execute an escape plan, including hiding in a box to fly first to Turkey and then to Beirut.

The father and son returned to the United States in the spring of 2020, where the American authorities arrested them. After months of attempts to prevent extradition, they were handed over to Japan in March and tried three months later.

In court last month, the Taylors expressed regret for their role in the escape.

Mr. Ghosn remains in Lebanon, where he is campaigning to improve his image and draw attention to what he describes as failures of Japan’s justice system. He said he had not committed a crime and that the charges against him were the product of corporate intrigue sponsored by the Japanese government.

Lebanon does not have an extradition treaty with Japan, effectively protecting Mr Ghosn from sharing the Taylors’ fate.

Another former Nissan executive, an American named Greg Kelly, is currently on trial in Japan on charges related to hiding Mr. Ghosn’s compensation. He says he is innocent.

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