Turkish private jet company MNG has filed a criminal complaint about its aircraft being illegally used to transport fugitive businessman Carlos Ghosn to Lebanon as he fled prosecution in Japan, the firm stated on Friday.
According to the statement, Ghosn's name was off the flight records, thanks to the efforts of a company employee who admitted acting “in his individual capacity".
It said two different clients made two separate bookings - one a return flight from Istanbul to Osaka, Japan, and the other a flight from Istanbul to Beirut.
"The two leases were seemingly not connected to each other. The name of Ghosn did not appear in the official documentation of any of the flights. The jets did not belong to but were operated by MNG Jet", the statement said.
Along with a criminal complaint, an internal inquiry ensued, after the company learned from the media that the “leasing was benefitting Ghosn and not the officially declared passengers".
The criminal complaint takes aim at those who covertly facilitated Ghosn’s relocation, with reports stating that one of those who helped him was the fugitive tycoon’s Lebanese wife, businesswoman Carole.
Ghosn, who faced multiple charges of financial misconduct that he denies, won bail in April but with strict conditions, which included a ban on overseas travel and living under surveillance.
But the Porto Velho-born executive, who holds French, Brazilian and Lebanese citizenships, managed to slip out of Japan on Sunday despite having handed over his three passports to his lawyers.
Ex-Nissan boss Ghosn, one of the world's best-known and top-paid executives, has become Japan's most famous fugitive after he revealed on Tuesday he had fled to Lebanon, his wife Carole’s country of birth, to escape what he dubbed a "rigged" justice system.
Reports have since emerged saying Japanese authorities allowed the former Nissan boss to carry a spare French passport in a locked case while out on bail, thereby shedding light on how he could have managed to complete his getaway.
Japan does not have an extradition treaty with Lebanon, which has said there was no reason to take action against Ghosn when he entered the country.
Lebanese authorities reportedly asked for Ghosn's return a week before he escaped Tokyo, according to a Financial Times report citing people familiar with the matter.
Media reports offered a vivid description of Ghosn's escape, as he was alleged to have been taken out of his Tokyo home in an instrument case by a former US marine and a private security official from a Lebanese firm posing as musicians about to perform at a Christmas party.