Carlos Ghosn said his family didn't help with his Houdini-like escape from Japan to Lebanon

Etienne Laurent, Pool via APCarlos Ghosn.

Carlos Ghosn’s family did not help him escape from Japan to Lebanon, the former head of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance said through a representative. Ghosn’s statement followed a report on Thursday from The Wall Street Journal, citing sources familiar the matter, that his wife had been involved in the operation.

“There has been speculation in the media that my wife Carole, and other members of my family played a role in my departure from Japan,” Ghosn said. “All such speculation is inaccurate and false. I alone arranged for my departure. My family had no role whatsoever.”

Ghosn had been awaiting trial in Japan after he was charged with underreporting his income at Nissan and using company money for personal gain. He has denied those allegations.

Ghosn fled Japan on Sunday evening local time with the help of a private security company, Reuters reported, ultimately arriving in Lebanon, where he grew up. Turkish authorities detained four pilots and three employees of Turkey’s Ataturk Airport on Thursday as part of their investigation into the operation, according to a representative for Turkey’s police force cited by Reuters.

The Wall Street Journal reported that Ghosn’s escape had been planned for months. Ghosn had reportedly hoped that his trial would be more likely to have a favourable outcome if it was held in Lebanon than in Japan, where the conviction rate is 99%.

“I am now in Lebanon and will no longer be held hostage by a rigged Japanese justice system where guilt is presumed, discrimination is rampant, and basic human rights are denied, in flagrant disregard of Japan’s legal obligations under international law and treaties it is bound to uphold,” Ghosn said Tuesday in a statement, The New York Times reported.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.