Former Green Beret and private security contractor, Michael Taylor, who is being held at the Norfolk County Correctional Center in Massachusetts awaiting extradition to Japan, told “Mornings with Maria” in an exclusive telephone interview from behind bars that he is asking President Trump and the State Department to intervene and help him stay in the United States.
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“At the end of the day it’s the State Department who makes the final decision, not the courts,” Taylor told host Maria Bartiromo on Wednesday. “And I guess only the president can turn this around.”
“I can’t believe for one second that our president of the United States, President Trump, knows about this because I just can’t see him sending his veterans and American citizens overseas to be tortured for something that should have never happened and there’s no case precedent in it either,” he continued.
Late last month, Taylor along with his 27-year-old son Peter won a temporary reprieve from a federal judge preventing their immediate extradition to Japan. The ruling came only hours before the pair were scheduled to board a flight to Tokyo.
The father and son are charged under Japanese law with enabling the escape of a criminal for helping former Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn to flee Japan to avoid financial criminal charges. Ghosn’s escape in December had the drama and intrigue of a Hollywood thriller and made international news. Ghosn was smuggled out to Lebanon inside a crate used for audio equipment.
On Oct. 28, the U.S. State Department gave its approval for the Taylor’s extradition. Lawyers for the men issued a statement calling on the department and the White House to reconsider the decision.
Taylor told Bartiromo he and his son were arrested by U.S. marshals on May 20 and that “the Japanese have requested our extradition.”
Taylor said he and his son have been held without bail at the Norfolk County Correctional Center for about six months “based off the request by the Japanese prosecutors that we’re supposed to be detained.”
“The Department of Justice and State Department have both agreed and we’re standing by, waiting to be extradited,” he added.
“Our attorneys are doing the best they can, but it’s a difficult situation because you don’t have the same constitutional rights with the extradition treaty between the United States and Japan as you would as a normal citizen.”
He also stressed that his son had no involvement in Ghosn’s escape saying, “That’s another travesty of this thing.”
“He had nothing to do with it whatsoever,” Taylor said. “However, you’re not able to produce any evidence because they [Japanese prosecutors] only need to show probable cause, which is a very low standard to have people arrested and then subsequently extradited to Japan.”
“And there’s a reason why there’s only two countries that have extradition treaties with Japan, which is South Korea and the United States. No other country on earth has an extradition treaty with them for good reason,” Taylor continued.
He went on to say, “It’s difficult to say how can we be the beacon of human rights when we’re taking our citizens during a worldwide pandemic and there really is no conviction … and you’re going to put us on a plane and ship us over there, especially disabled American veterans during a worldwide pandemic.”
Taylor also said that he anticipates being tortured in a Japanese prison, just like Ghosn told Bartiromo he was when he was behind bars in Japan.
Speaking on “Morning’s with Maria” on January 9, Ghosn explained the torture he endured during his incarceration in Japan.
“You can shower twice a week, you have only 30 minutes exposure to the light and only during the working days because during the weekend there’s not enough staff to allow you to get out to the light,” Ghosn said. “But the most important thing is interrogation can take place at any moment, it goes up to eight hours a day. And without the presence of your lawyer.”
“That’s exactly what they’re going to do to us … that’s why it’s incredibly shocking that our State Department would just simply, without any explanation, stick two American citizens on a plane to go get tortured,” Taylor told Bartiromo on Wednesday.
Bartiromo said she contacted the State Department and the Department of Justice but has not yet heard back “in an official capacity.”
She did say, however, that one of her sources told her “a Green Beret takes an oath of office to follow the law. This guy did not.”
FOX Business reached out to the White House on whether President Trump will consider intervening but did not immediately get a response.
In an exclusive interview with “Morning’s with Maria” on Wednesday, following Taylor’s interview, Ghosn said he is “shocked by the fact that he [Taylor] could be extradited.”
“When I learned there was an extradition treaty between the countries I was shocked,” he added.
He then explained, based on his own experience in a Japanese prison, what would happen to Taylor if he’s extradited.
Ghosn warned that foreigners in Japanese prisons can expect to “suffer a lot.”
“There is a violation of human rights all over the system,” he said. “This is something which is not at the level of Japan. Japan is much better than that and that’s why I think there is a fight to try to change their hostage system, which is frankly a surprise when you visit Japan and when you leave Japan.”
Fox News’ David Lee Miller contributed to this report.