Stop the extradition of Veteran Michael Taylor & his son Peter Taylor to Japan
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78 Days in Jail.
Update August 8th: Bail appeal DENIED. Extradition hearing set for August 28th.
A cruel and horrible treatment of 2 U.S. Citizens at the hands of their own government.
1.) They have not been officially indicted in Japan.
2.) Michael who is 59 years old is missing part of his lung from a past injury and will need immediate hospitalization and could possibly die if he gets Covid-19.
3.) Peter Taylor who has no criminal record was deemed a flight risk because he's traveled overseas frequently.
4.) The U.S. Government shows more compassion for convicted rapists and murderers as they are being released due to Covid 19. Peter & Michael (not convicted) are better of behind bars according to the Judge and the prosecutors.
Michael Taylor is a highly decorated American veteran and hero. A former Special Forces operator, he fought for America all over the world – from Nicaragua to Norway, Iraq to Lebanon to Afghanistan. Whether it was rescuing kidnapped kids, going undercover to break up a drug gang or protecting American officials in the most dangerous spots in the world, Mike has answered the call of duty over and over again. But today he and his 27-year-old son are being treated by our own government as if they are terrorists.
It is an abuse of constitutional rights and an outrageous example of how twisted the American legal system can be. And for our family it is a nightmare.
Our father, Michael, and brother, Peter, have been entombed in prison for more than 70 days. They have not been charged with crimes in America or Japan, yet they are locked up in a jail in Massachusetts which has had over 75 Covid-19 cases. They are imprisoned because Japan wants them extradited so they can face minor charges there and the US government has been happy to oblige. At worst their alleged crimes would be a misdemeanor in Japan. Meanwhile Japan has refused to turn over their own nationals who have been indicted in the US for actions that caused 16 Americans to die. Despite this obscene hypocrisy the US Justice Department seems intent on shipping Mike and Peter to a country which has given prosecutors so much abusive power over defendants that they have a 99.7% conviction rate and have earned the contempt of Human Rights Watch.
How can this happen? How can the lives of an American hero and his son be threatened in this way?
The charges are the result of Mike and Peter’s alleged connection with the escape of former Nissan/Renault Chairman, Carlos Ghosn from Japan. It’s a riveting story of how Ghosn – who was on bail for supposed financial crimes in Japan – disappeared and then popped up in Lebanon. It made headlines throughout the world and deeply embarrassed the Japanese government. The story brought deep scrutiny to the appalling Japanese legal system and the fact that the original charges against Ghosn seem to have been created out of thin air. With their dirty laundry exposed, Japanese prosecutors demanded the US extradite Mike and Peter to face charges that they aided Ghosn with his vanishing act.
Because of Japan’s extradition request the Justice Department sent 10 men with automatic weapons to our home and seized Mike and Peter in the early morning hours of May 20th. But prosecutors had not done a careful analysis of Japanese law and filled their charging document with falsehoods and inaccuracies. In fact, it is highly dubious that what they are charged with is even a crime in Japan. But since they took this action they have doubled down. They stripped away our father and brothers’ constitutional rights, threw them in jail and claimed that they were a flight risk who could not be let out on bail. Meanwhile prisons and jails across the country are releasing anyone they can because of how Covid-19 is sweeping through their facilities. Even murder suspects have been let out, while Mike and Peter – accused of at worst a misdemeanor – remain behind bars. And the flight risk charge is simply baseless since they had returned to the US from overseas knowing full well that Japan may attempt extradition.
It took more than a month for Mike and Peter to be able to make their case for bail in front of a magistrate. Those are cases that are typically resolved in a day or two yet weeks have gone by without a decision. Meanwhile the Covid-19 cases in the jail they are held in have been skyrocketing. Mike was wounded as a veteran, has had part of a lung removed and is at grave risk. Our dad is a dedicated family man who takes care of his 86-year-old father, also a veteran, and is adored by many in his community. He is guided by faith and justice and above all loves his country. You would think that a man who sacrificed so much for his country would be treated better than this.
What is particularly unjust is that Mike and Peter – who have been accused of nothing in the US and convicted of nothing in Japan – are in this situation while Japan has refused to honor the extradition treaty they now expect the US to enforce. Over 250 Americans were injured and 16 died because of faulty air-bags knowingly made by Japanese manufacturer, Takata. Executives were indicted in the US yet Japan refused to extradite them. Meanwhile Mike and Peter -- accused of a misdemeanor that may well not even be a crime at all -- are locked up without bail and their lives put at risk. Thousands of convicted criminals have been released from prison because of Covid-19 but apparently the US government think Mike and Peter should be treated far more harshly.
Frankly it is outrageous. This is not the America fought for and we ask for your help to fix this by supporting this petition.
We love our father and brother dearly and feel betrayed by our own government. These are good citizens of this nation and they need to be released and allowed their freedom and constitutional rights. They are not trying to avoid whatever legal process may ensue, they just want the same rights the rest of us enjoy and don’t want to be exposed to an incredibly dangerous disease. Please help us spread the word and fight for Mike and Peter as our father has fought for all of us.
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