Lawyers for the former Green Beret and son wanted by Japan for assisting former Nissan Motor CEO Carlos Ghosn flee the country on Monday argued U.S. officials falsely arrested them for helping a crime that they say does not exist in Japan: bail jumping.
Lawyers for Michael Taylor and his son, Peter Taylor, in a motion told a federal judge in Boston that he should quash the U.S. warrants issued last month for their arrests or release them on bail while their extradition case continues.
U.S. officials arrested the Taylors in May at Japan’s request for allegedly helping Ghosn flee out of the country in a box while he was out on bail awaiting trial on allegations of financial misconduct which he denies.
Their lawyers on Monday argued that neither bail jumping nor helping somebody are described as crimes in Japan.
The defense attorneys stated that fact is “so far beyond dispute that the Japanese government has started considering whether it should amend the law to make such conduct a crime”.
While Japan has issued arrest warrants for the Taylors, their lawyers stated that the crime noted in the Japanese warrants is an immigration offense, a non-extraditable misdemeanor.
The lawyers further said that neither Taylor, including Michael, a U.S. Army Special Forces veteran who established a private security company, pose a flight risk needing them to be held without bail.
The Justice Department and Japanese embassy in Washington have not discussed the matter yet.
U.S. officials arrested the Taylors in Harvard, Massachusetts, on May 20 at the request of Japan, which in January released arrest warrants for both men in connection with facilitating the December 29, 2019 escape for Ghosn.