Former U.S. Special Forces soldier Michael Taylor and his 27-year-old son Peter have lost their final appeal after being held in jail for 9 months pending extradition to Japan.
Taylor's name reached worldwide infamy after ex-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn was smuggled out of the country to escape pending corruption charges. Taylor was allegedly hired to use his skills to smuggle Ghosn to Lebanon, which included a plan to conceal him in a black music case with air holes drilled into it.
Michael Taylor has maintained that his son had nothing to do with the alleged smuggling operation. Court documents obtained by Connecting Vets show a muddled view at best of how Japanese authorities and the Department of Justice view Peter's role in the event. Much of the Japanese authorities' case appears to rely on whether or not he passed off a hotel key card to Ghosn. In the documents, Japanese authorities came to the realization that he did not.
In her ruling against the Taylors' request to remain in the United States due to human rights concerns in Japanese prisons, Judge Indira Tarwani wrote, "The prison conditions in Japan may be deplorable and although the criminal procedures that the Taylors may be subjected to may not satisfy American notions of due process," but that their case did not meet the threshold needed to deny extradition.
At this point, the Taylors could be formally extradited and flown to Japan at any moment, a country with a conviction rate that hovers above 99%, where sleep deprivation is used on prisoners in order to coerce confessions.
According to family members, Peter has tested positive for COVID-19, which has delayed the extradition while he sits in quarantine.