The ruling paves the way for the surrender of a US Army Special Forces veteran and his son to Japan.
A Boston federal judge on Thursday rejected last-minute efforts by two men to avoid being extradited to Japan to face charges they aided former Nissan Motor Co Ltd chairman Carlos Ghosn in flee the country.
U.S. District Judge Indira Talwani’s ruling paved the way for U.S. Army Special Forces veteran Michael Taylor and son Peter Taylor to be returned to Japan after the U.S. State Department approved their extradition.
Judge Talwani said that “although the conditions of detention in Japan may be deplorable”, prohibiting extradition was not enough. She added that the United States had “sufficiently established that the actions allegedly committed by the Taylors constituted an extraditable offense.”
Nissan and the Japanese Embassy in Washington did not immediately comment.
The Taylors were arrested in May at the request of Japan. Talwani suspended their extradition on Oct. 29 so that she could hear their challenge to the State Department’s decision.
Prosecutors said the Taylors helped Ghosn flee Japan on December 29, 2019, hidden in a box and in a private jet before heading to his childhood home, Lebanon, which has no extradition treaty. with Japan.
Ghosn was awaiting trial for committing financial misconduct, including underestimating his compensation in Nissan’s financial statements. Ghosn has denied the wrongdoing.
Prosecutors said the elder Taylor, a private security specialist, and his son had received $ 1.3 million for their services.
Lawyers for the Taylors argued that they could not be prosecuted in Japan for helping someone “skip bail” and that if they were extradited they risked incessant interrogation and torture.
Ghosn, in a court file, sought to support their claim, arguing he faced prolonged detention, mental torture and intimidation in Japan and that the Taylors would face “similar or worse conditions” .