By on January 3, 2020

Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn unveils redesigned Maxima “4 Door Spor - Image: Nissan

The Carlos Ghosn escape saga continues to evolve without any help from the man himself. Stating Thursday that he alone orchestrated his escape from Japan, where the former auto titan was living under house arrest, Ghosn has not offered the full story on how he slipped out of the country and made his way to Lebanon.

What is clear is that Ghosn’s two-part escape involved the use of two private aircraft and a plane swap in Turkey. The operator of those aircraft isn’t happy.

As reported by Bloomberg, Istanbul-based MNG Jet Havacilik AS has filed a complaint about “the illegal use of its jet charter services,” claiming a pilot falsified records as part of Ghosn’s escape plan. The former auto executive’s name allegedly appears nowhere on any related documentation.

Turkey has reportedly detained seven people in the escape effort, four of them pilots. MNG says two Bombardier business jets were hired to complete two flights — the first from Osaka, Japan to Istanbul, Turkey (originating in Dubai); the second from Istanbul to Beirut, Lebanon.

Complicating the narrative that Ghosn slipped out of Japan from under the watchful gaze of authorities with the help of a hired team of mercenaries posing as a Gregorian band, Japanese media now report that surveillance footage of Ghosn’s Tokyo home showed the former exec leaving, alone, on Sunday, never to return. Both broadcaster NHK and newspaper Nikkei claim Japanese prosecutors are looking into the theory that Ghosn met up with a group after leaving his home, The New York Times reports.

Osaka is roughly 300 miles from Tokyo.

Japanese authorities have remained silent as to how the former Renault CEO and Nissan chairman escaped house arrest and a series of looming trials stemming from his alleged financial wrongdoings. It’s alleged that Ghosn made a break for it after learning that one of the trials had been pushed back to spring 2021. Ghosn, who holds Lebanese citizenship, is now the subject of an Interpol arrest warrant, though Lebanon isn’t known for extraditing its citizens.

[Image: Nissan]

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44 Comments on “Ghosn Update: Turkish Jet Operator Files Complaint, Pilots Detained, As Japanese Authorities Remain Tight-lipped...”


  • avatar
    Lie2me

    I’m starting to look forward to these daily installments of “To Catch a Thief” and am looking forward to the eventual Hollywood movie :)

  • avatar
    JimC2

    Hehehe this is really great publicity for Bombardier business jets. Osaka to Istanbul is almost 5,000 miles. At those latitudes going eastbound you usually have headwinds to deal with and sometimes the jet stream too.

    The advertising people ought to try and spin this caper into a sort of Paris-Dakar/Cannonball Run of corporate aviation.

  • avatar
    ScarecrowRepair

    I think Ghosn is much too smart to betray his escape route and alert he authorities.

    All theses stories about being smuggled out in a double bass case are just nonsense to make up a good story.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Joey, have you ever been in a Turkish prison?

  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    A commenter on this site previously mentioned that Netflix or HBO would soon be interested on filming a docudrama.

    Well…….

    The New York Times reports today that Goshn actually met with a Hollywood producer.

  • avatar
    Secret Hi5

    Poor cannon-fodder pilots. They get thrown under the bus while Ghosn gets away, protected by the Lebanon government.

  • avatar
    Garrett

    Can’t wait for it to come out that the French government may have had a hand in this.

  • avatar
    ravenuer

    Amazing what enough money can do, heh?

  • avatar
    conundrum

    I love this story.

    “Japanese media now report that surveillance footage of Ghosn’s Tokyo home showed the former exec leaving, alone, on Sunday, never to return.”

    So there was surveillance video, but nobody to watch the feed and raise the alarm? Makes you wonder what house arrest means in Japan — probably nothing. Ghosn had to plead for that as I recall. Your average high profile criminal would have been sucking back ramen noodles in jail continuously from the time of first imprisonment, not being bailed a coupla times. House arrest was a PR move and presumably didn’t involve electronic GPS ankle bracelets.

    Complete Guess on my part for fun: So Carlos goes for walks as practice for the getaway for weeks, and nobody tells him not to, because he always comes back. The black car usually parked outside his home when he was there with Police Agents First Class inside probably went for gas. I mean let’s be reasonable here – the Japanese don’t buck authority, and obey orders. They expected Ghosn to respect that. Right. Plenty of opportunity while out enjoying the scenery to set up the escape scheme and then use a tire iron on his locked-box French passport on the real run. His wife had even lobbied the Orange Supreme lord of all earth to get better treatment for Carlos. Didn’t fit the publicity profile wanted, I guess. She also went after the French government, who also couldn’t be bothered. Pretty determined wife, notwithstanding the usual rude remarks from the big boys on here. She probably didn’t bother with the military dictator of Brazil, though, because he’s out torching the Amazon to grow industrial coconuts, in a world gone nutZ for fourth-rate milk substitute. Indonesia is Coconut Land already. You also need palm oil for the fake ice cream the Europeans like. Burp. Coconut milk gives me the runs. Here’s the scoop on that BS industry:

    https://www.cbc.ca/marketplace/m/episodes/2019-2020/food-fact-check

    Canadian CBC News also seems ahead of this Bloomberg “revelation” — they say none of France, Brazil nor Lebanon have extradition treaties with Japan. Furthermore it is a matter of French policy that they DO NOT extradite their own citizens from the country. Not that he’s there, but a good wine and cheese tour is thus still available to the happy couple in the future. CBC also say the Japanese allowed Ghosn to keep his spare French passport in a locked-box which is what he used for identity upon landing in Beirut. And the charter pilots were fooled? Person, passport photo. If they were they weren’t bright enough to be pilots. The latest summary from the beginning:

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/ghosn-nissan-renault-escape-japan-lebanon-1.5413513

    Yup, the Japanese snookered themselves on this one. There’ll be a minor court trial for the pilots and air charter company in Turkey to pretend they were fooled by Ghosn. The interesting story will be the 300 mile journey to the Osaka airport from Tokyo, dodging secret police agents like that guy in the Bourne identity. Did he go by car or take the Bullet train? Hiding in plain sight. With a bit of makeup, it strikes me that Ghosn’s eyes are somewhat Asiatic looking to begin with and being he’s not a gaijin giant, he could blend in without much sweat. I await the short story from Ghosn and Entertaintment Tonight’s breathless summary of it with bated breath. As Nissan plunges further down the toilet.

    • 0 avatar
      pdl2dmtl

      Oh conundrum… “orange man bad”, dictator of Brazil, quoting twice the CBC (Communist Broadcasting of Corporation) as a trustworthy source of information….

      If I didn’t know any better, I would say that you’re liberally biased.

      • 0 avatar
        Hydromatic

        “If I didn’t know any better, I would say that you’re liberally biased.”

        So?

      • 0 avatar
        RHD

        Having a “liberal bias” is a good thing, and a sign of intelligence. Letting Faux News and Rush Limbaugh tell you what to think just makes you a sheep, and fools you into thinking you know better.
        Caring about global problems such as massive deforestation, pollution and rising ocean levels isn’t “liberal bias”, it’s being a responsible, informed human being.

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          lib·er·al
          /ˈlib(ə)rəl/

          adjective
          adjective: liberal

          1. open to new behavior or opinions and willing to discard traditional values.
          “they have more liberal views toward marriage and divorce than some people”
          favorable to or respectful of individual rights and freedoms.

          2. (of education) concerned mainly with broadening a person’s general knowledge and experience, rather than with technical or professional training.

          ……………

          I always fail to understand why some people think this is a bad thing to be

    • 0 avatar

      It would be awesome if Ghosn thumbed a ride to the airport. What better cover? A private individuals vehicle.

  • avatar
    pdl2dmtl

    Oh conundrum… “orange man bad”, dictator of Brazil, quoting twice CBC as a reliable non-biased source of information…. etc.
    Hmmm… if I didn’t know any better I would say that you’re liberally biased.

  • avatar

    I am running out of popcorn. Is one sold by Amazon is good? I have prime membership same day delivery benefit.

  • avatar

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  • avatar

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  • avatar

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