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Yamaha warns musicians not to squeeze into instrument cases after Ghosn escape

Yamaha warns musicians not to squeeze into instrument cases after Ghosn escape
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People have been photographing themselves squeezing into instrument cases, the escape technique allegedly used by Carlos Ghosn to flee Japan. (AFP)

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TOKYO, JAPAN -- Yamaha has warned musicians in Japan against stuffing themselves into their instrument cases to mimic the escape technique allegedly used by fugitive ex-tycoon Carlos Ghosn.

Ghosn, who faces financial misconduct charges in Japan, managed to slip past authorities at the end of December reportedly by smuggling himself on board a plane inside an audio equipment box.

The 65-year-old has refused to shed light on how he ghosted out of Japan to Lebanon, but that has not stopped a string of internet users "playing Ghosn" by posing in cases usually meant to protect big instruments.

In one picture posted to Twitter, a young woman curled up inside a padded green harp case, while another post appeared to show somebody standing in a double bass gig bag.

The stunts have not chimed with Japanese instrument manufacturer Yamaha, however, who sounded a note of caution warning people against the trend.

"There have been a large number of tweets showing people climbing into large instrument cases," tweeted Yamaha Wind Stream, the company s account for information on wind instruments.

"To avoid the possibility of a tragic accident, please do not do this... Musical instrument and audio equipment cases are designed to hold musical instruments and audio equipment. Please use them correctly."

Ghosn, arrested on financial misconduct charges in 2018, jumped bail and fled in mysterious circumstances to Lebanon, where he gave a rambling press conference last week.

The Wall Street Journal reported that he was snuck on to a private jet in Osaka in a large case for audio equipment, which was later found at the back of the cabin.

The newspaper cited unnamed sources close to the investigation in Turkey as saying that holes had been drilled into the container to ensure the businessman could breathe.

The report was accompanied by a picture of a large black case which The Wall Street Journal claimed was the one used by Ghosn.
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