Carlos Ghosn, former boss of Renault-Nissan is accused of financial embezzlement. - Maya Alleruzzo / AP / SIPA

Former Renault-Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn accused French authorities of "abandoning" him soon after his arrest in Japan in late 2018, claiming to have been treated like any "average French citizen" , in an interview on Al-Arabiya channel.

"They (then) abandoned me"

Accused of financial embezzlement, Carlos Ghosn was arrested in Japan in November 2018. And at the end of 2019, he had reached Lebanon via Turkey during an exfiltration operation.

"They (the French state) supported me for the first two, three weeks, or even the first month," after the arrest, said the former car magnate to the Saudi TV channel. "They (then) abandoned me," continued the ex-businessman, holder of French, Lebanese and Brazilian nationalities. "They brought me the kind of support they would give to the average French citizen, let alone," he added.

"A French political figure told me:" if I had been president, I would have got you out in 24 hours ". And the American ambassador to Japan told the French ambassador that if I had been the director of an American company, I would have been released in 24 hours, "said Carlos Ghosn, who has lived in Beirut since his flight from Japan.

Tokyo demands extradition

In addition, he protested against Tokyo's delay in sending its judicial file to the Lebanese authorities. In January, Beirut had demanded the transfer of this file for a trial in Lebanon, thus opposing an inadmissibility to his extradition requested by Tokyo. "It's been six months and they still haven't sent the file. Why haven't they done it yet? "Asked Carlos Ghosn.

A book in preparation

Regarding his escape, Carlos Ghosn, 66, said that he himself "worked out" his escape plan through a "system" of communication he had established with the outside world, without giving more details. The former car magnate was on bail, with a ban on leaving Japan, when he was exfiltrated from the archipelago.

On Friday, an Istanbul court began trying seven Turkish nationals accused of helping Carlos Ghosn escape. According to the indictment, Carlos Ghosn was hidden during the journey in a bulky case for a musical instrument in which holes had been drilled to allow the fugitive to breathe.

"All the accusations against me are" false ", and I will show it in my book which will be published before the end of the year. I will respond to all charges with documents and witnesses, ”he concluded.


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