Raid in Japan, arrests of Turkey in the extension of the Ghosn probe

TOKYO: Officials on Thursday raided the Tokyo former residence Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn who fled to Lebanon to avoid a Japanese trial while Turkey Several people were arrested as part of an increasingly extensive investigation into the security period.

Ghosn, who faced multiple charges of financial misconduct that he denies, earned bail in April but under strict conditions, including a travel ban abroad.

But the dishonored executive, who has French, Brazilian and Lebanese nationalities, managed to escape on Sunday despite having given his three passports to his lawyers.

A court in Tokyo had allowed Ghosn to keep a second French passport as he needed one to travel inside Japan, a source close to the matter told AFP Thursday.

He had to keep this passport to prove his short stay status, the source said, adding: There was permission from the court.

Ghosn was allowed this French passport whenever he was kept in a closed case with the code held by his lawyers, the source said.

There is no emigration data showing Ghosn's departure from Japan but he entered Lebanon on a French passport, public broadcaster NHK said.

Colorful rumors abound about the exact circumstances of Ghosn's bold escape.

One claim in the Lebanese media was that the mogul was sprung from his Tokyo residence in a musical instrument case - a story a source in his entourage denied.

It is believed that he took a private plane from Kansai airport in western Japan on December 29, bound for Istanbul . It is believed that Ghosn went from there to Beirut .

Turkey 's interior ministry has opened an investigation into Ghosn's apparent transfer between private jets at an Istanbul airport on Monday.

Authorities questioned seven people, including four pilots, as part of the investigation, the DHA news agency reported Thursday.

Prosecutors, meanwhile, raided his former Tokyo residence Thursday as part of an initial investigation into his escape.

Television images showed several officers in dark suits entering the property.

Authorities are expected to analyze the images of the security cameras of their residence and other places where they suspect that Ghosn traveled before fleeing, NHK said.

Police suspect that several people accompanied him to help him escape illegally, he added.

The Japanese government has not yet issued any official statement on the case.

When his defense lawyers were asking for bail, prosecutors said it was a risk of escape with powerful connections, but Ghosn himself said he wanted to be tried to prove his innocence.

One of his lawyers also said at the time that it was such a famous face that he had no chance of escaping without being detected.

Several countries allow people to have two passports of the same nationality, for example, if they are frequent travelers who constantly need visas or visit nations in conflict with each other.

The Japanese government is likely to ask Lebanon to extradite Ghosn through diplomatic channels, but chances of his handover appear slim as Beirut has no extradition accord with Tokyo .

The French government said Thursday that it would not extradite Ghosn if he arrived in the country because he did not extradite his citizens.

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