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Japan reviewing bail system after Ghosn’s escape

  • January 6, 2020
  • , Jiji Press , 10:33 p.m.
  • English Press

Tokyo, Jan. 6 (Jiji Press)–The Justice Ministry is reviewing Japan’s bail system after former Nissan Motor Co. <7201> Chairman Carlos Ghosn left the country last month for Lebanon without permission while awaiting trial on bail.

Ghosn’s case shows that huge bail money does not necessarily prevent a defendant from jumping bail and fleeing overseas.

The ministry is expected to consider obliging defendants to wear equipment using the Global Positioning System to monitor them.

“We’ll consider various options,” Justice Minister Masako Mori told a press conference Monday, regarding the possible use of GPS devices for defendants on bail.

In November last year, Mori told a parliamentary committee meeting that her ministry would consider reviewing the bail and detention systems after a series of incidents in which defendants escaped.

The ministry will accelerate its work to review the bail system in the wake of Ghosn’s escape, which made huge headlines around the world.

Japan is believed to have no experience in using GPS devices for monitoring defendants on bail, which are used in the United States and other countries.

The ministry will consider who should monitor defendants with GPS devices in what specific ways, as well as how their privacy should be protected. If necessary, the ministry would consider revising the Code of Criminal Procedure.

The ministry also faces a need to strengthen screenings of people leaving Japan, seen as looser than the procedures for those entering the country.

Mori said she had instructed the Immigration Services Agency of Japan to tighten the departure screenings in order to prevent any recurrence of escapes similar to Ghosn’s.

Ghosn is expected to hold a press conference in the Lebanese capital of Beirut on Wednesday. He is expected to blast Japan’s criminal justice system.

Mori said that his illegal departure and her country’s judicial system are different issues. His getaway cannot be justified, she added.

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