Justice Minister Masako Mori vowed Monday to pursue the criminal prosecution of fugitive and former Nissan Chairman Carlos Ghosn, calling his escape while on bail a crime.

"It is clear that we don't have any records of the defendant departing Japan, hence we believe that he left Japan illegally," Mori told a news conference Monday morning at her office in Tokyo.

Mori vowed to introduce tighter immigration checks to prevent a repeat incident, and said that, on her orders, screenings and departure procedures have already been strengthened so as not to allow any of the security lapses that led to Ghosn's escape to continue. She also announced plans to review the loopholes that allowed Ghosn to flee the country.