Former Green Beret and Son Await Extradition for Role in Carlos Ghosn Escape
The complex aftereffects of a high-profile case
In late 2019, as he faced charges for financial impropriety, Carlos Ghosn fled Japan. His escape was the stuff of heist movies and airport thrillers, making the news that he had hired Mike Ovitz as his agent earlier this year seem less than surprising. Ghosn is presently living in Lebanon, where he cannot be extradited to Japan. Unfortunately for the people who helped him escape, they aren’t in a comparable position.
A new article at The Wall Street Journal explores the current situation facing Michael and Peter Taylor. Michael is a former Green Beret; Peter is his son. Both are currently imprisoned in the United States, awaiting extradition to Japan for their role in helping Ghosn escape. Or, as writers Mark Maremont and Nick Kostov phrase it, “the multimillionaire auto executive and the former soldier have traded places.”
Complicating matters are the elder Taylor’s health problems: as a result of earlier surgery, he is missing part of one lung, which places him at higher risk for COVID-19.
According to the article, the Taylor family’s legal strategy includes appeals to the Trump administration. Maremont and Kostov note that their lawyers include Ty Cobb and Abbe Lowell, both of whom have ties to the Trump family; they’ve also appealed to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
The elder Taylor has a specialty in exfiltrating people from hazardous situations, including helping rescue a New York Times reporter from the Taliban. But he also had legal troubles, including a moment in 2012 when, according to the article, “he was indicted on federal charges that he and others rigged a Pentagon contract his security firm had won, then tried to bribe an FBI agent.”
The Taylors maintain that they were trying to help a man who was wrongfully imprisoned. The article also points out that they aren’t the only people involved with Ghosn’s escape who face charges. His departure from Japan may have been sudden, but the repercussions of it are still being felt.
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