BEIRUT: Caretaker Justice Minister Salim Jreissati will ask Japan to return embattled businessman Carlos Ghosn to face trial on Lebanese soil.
Speaking to Annahar, Jreissati said a letter has been dispatched to Japanese authorities asking for a detailed overview of the charges brought against Ghosn as well as to afford him a meeting with Lebanese ambassador to Japan. Depending on the charges brought against Ghosn, Jreissati will then hand over a request to Japanese authorities.
Jreissati's demand is based on the global anti-corruption treaty enacted in 2009, signed by 141 countries including Japan and Lebanon.
"Article 44 and 22 of the UN Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) paves the way to return the accused to face trial in Lebanon if charges apply in both countries," Jreissati said.
"We are awaiting a comprehensive examination of the case against Ghosn before issuing the request," he told Annahar, adding that "matters of tax evasion, abuse of trust, or the misuse of corporate funds apply to UNCAC."
Ghosn, who holds both Lebanese and French citizenship, is accused of falsifying securities reports and underreporting his earnings by Japanese authorities which led him to be dismissed by both Nissan and Mitsubishi.
Ghosn's assets in Lebanon are also under review, he said, pointing to Nissan's Beirut representatives exploring his different properties and how they were financed.
Given the lack of an extradition agreement between Japan and Lebanon, the UNCAC is the sole course of action to trie Ghosn on Lebanese soil.
An international team of lawyers and legal experts, including established Lebanese attorneys, to defend former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn, sources told Annahar this week.
The prominent businessman has up to this point retained his position as Renault CEO and chairman, with the French automobile giant being the largest Nissan shareholder. The French government also owns 15 percent of Renault.
Thus far, French authorities have yet to condemn Ghosn, awaiting further concrete evidence turning these allegations into facts.
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