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Lebanon receives Interpol arrest warrant for Ghosn

Former Nissan Chairman Carlos Ghosn leaves his lawyer's office in Tokyo on April 3, 2019. [KAZUHIRO NOGI/AFP via Getty Images]
Former Nissan Chairman Carlos Ghosn leaves his lawyer's office in Tokyo on April 3, 2019. [KAZUHIRO NOGI/AFP via Getty Images]

Lebanon received an Interpol arrest warrant on Thursday for former Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn, while Turkey launched an investigation into his daring escape from Japan via Istanbul, Reuters reports.

Ghosn has become an international fugitive after he revealed on Tuesday he had fled to Lebanon to escape what he called a "rigged" justice system in Japan, where he faces charges relating to alleged financial crimes.

Sources close to Ghosn said a delay to a trial and a strict ban on communicating with his wife motivated him to go ahead with a plan to use a private security company to smuggle him out of Japan via private jet.

The Interpol red notice, which calls on authorities to arrest a wanted person, was received by Lebanon's internal security forces and has yet to be referred to the judiciary, a Lebanese judicial source told Reuters.

READ: Ex-Nissan chief flees Japan to Lebanon leaving officials 'dumbfounded'

A senior Lebanese security official said it was not yet clear if Ghosn would be summoned for questioning over the warrant but said Lebanon does not extradite its citizens to foreign states.

In past cases, where Lebanon has received red notices for Lebanese citizens resident in the country, the suspects have not been detained but their passports have been confiscated and bail has been set, the judicial source said.

Ghosn, who holds French, Lebanese and Brazilian citizenship, has deep ties to Lebanon, the country of his childhood, where his investments include a stake in a bank, real estate and a vineyard.

Turkish police on Thursday detained seven people, including four pilots, as part of an investigation into Ghosn's passage through the country, a police spokeswoman said.

She said the other detainees were two airport ground staff and one cargo worker and all seven were expected to give statements in court on Thursday.

Flight tracking data suggests Ghosn used two different planes to fly to Istanbul and then to Lebanon.

READ: Nissan agrees joint venture to build Algerian car assembly plant

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