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By definition, a red notice is a "be-on-the-lookout"-type memo issued by Interpol – the International Criminal Police Organization – to its nearly 200 member countries asking that the wanted person be extradited to the country from which he or she is a fugitive.
But it is not an arrest warrant and does not require any action be taken in countries that have not established extradition treaties with the requesting country, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
Interpol describes the notice as “a request to law enforcement worldwide to locate and provisionally arrest a person pending extradition, surrender, or similar legal action.”
A Red Notice is an international wanted persons notice, but it is not an arrest warrant.
While there are currently roughly 58,000 active red notices, only 7,187 were public as of Friday morning, and Ghosn’s was not one of them, Interpol’s website shows.
Ghosn, who is of Lebanese heritage, was arrested in November 2018 on financial misconduct charges of under-reporting his future compensation and breach of trust. The former Renault CEO and Nissan chairman was out on bail in Japan – and was supposedly being watched closely – when he fled the country early Monday.
A Lebanese state security official later told state NNA news Ghosn will not face legal repercussions, Reuters reported at the time. Sources close to the ousted auto exec told The New York Times he met with Lebanon’s President Michel Aoun soon after his escape, which the executive office has denied.
Investigators probing the getaway took seven people into custody on Thursday, though it wasn’t immediately clear if charges were filed. Meanwhile, prosecutors in Japan, which does not have an extradition treaty with Lebanon, announced the procurement of Ghosn’s red notice that same day.
But Ghosn is not the first prominent figure for which a red notice was issued. Here’s a look at some high-powered, or well-known people for whom red notices have been issued or, at the very least, sought:
NBA PLAYER ENES KANTER
Turkish prosecutors sought a red notice for the now-Boston Celtics center in January 2019, accusing him of having ties to a terror organization.
Law enforcement in Turkey cited Kanter’s alleged links to exiled Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, who is blamed for a failed coup in 2016, and accusing him of providing financial support to Gulen's group, according to Turkish Sabah newspaper.
The threat prevented Kanter from traveling to London for a game while he was with the New York Knicks in January, according to The Associated Press, and a game against the Toronto Raptors soon after he was traded to the Portland Trail Blazers, NBC Sports Northwest reported.
“My decision not to travel to London was difficult from a competitive standpoint but much easier from a safety one,” he wrote in an opinion piece for the Washington Post. “It helps puts a spotlight on how a dictator is wrecking Turkey — people have been killed, thousands are unjustly imprisoned, and countless lives have been ruined. That is no game.”
FORMER BAHRAINIAN NATIONAL SOCCER PLAYER HAKEEM AL-ARAIBI
Al-Araibi fled Bahrain, citing political repression as the reason for doing so. At the time, he faced a 10-year prison sentence for an arson attack that damaged a police station. He denied those charges and said the case was politically motivated.
He said he had previously been blindfolded and had his legs beaten while he was held in Bahrain, and feared torture if he returned.
Al-Araibi had been living in Melbourne, Australia, where he was a refugee and played semi-professional soccer, when he traveled to Thailand for his honeymoon in November 2018. Once he arrived in Bangkok, he was detained at the request of Bahrain through an Interpol red notice.
Thailand’s foreign ministry had said that al-Araibi was detained because Australian authorities had forwarded them an Interpol red notice that Bahrain was seeking his arrest. Australian police acknowledged doing so, though it was not clear whether Australia had informed Bahrain that al-Araibi was flying. Bahrain reportedly requested the red notice on the same day that al-Araibi received his Thai visa.
He was detained in Thailand for three months before being released in February 2019.
DIAMOND TYCOON NIRAV MODI
A red notice was issued on behalf of Indian law enforcement, who accused the businessman's companies of swindling state-owned Punjab National Bank by using bogus financial papers to get loans to purchase and import jewels. His business partner, Mehul Choksi, was also accused of being involved.
Modi founded Firestar Diamond International and later Nirav Modi Brand, according to Forbes, and his jewelry has been worn by actresses including Naomi Watts, Viola Davis and Priyanka Chopra. His net worth in 2017 was estimated to be around $1.8 million, Forbes reported, but he was later removed from the magazine’s billionaires list the next year.
The tycoon moved to London in June 2018, where he was arrested in March 2019. His criminal case is still ongoing.
RED BULL HEIR VORAYUTH YOOVIDHYA
A red notice for the Thai heir to the Red Bull fortune, who goes by the nickname “Boss,” was released to the public in September 2017, after it was issued the month before.
The now-37-year-old was accused of driving his Ferrari drunk, and at an alleged high rate of speed in September 2012, when he fatally struck a Thai police officer before allegedly fleeing the scene, according to a photograph of the red notice, which was obtained by The Associated Press. The statutes of limitations for multiple aspects of the alleged crimes varied.
Vorayuth’s family owns about half of the Red Bull empire, which was co-founded by his grandfather.
He is reported to have fled Thailand shortly before the red notice was issued.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.