Ghosn arrested again in financial misconduct case

Ghosn arrested again in financial misconduct case

In a further development, Renault's Ethics and Compliance Department has completed its report into Ghosn's behaviour while heading the French firm.

"I imagine the prosecutors are concerned that the previous charges are not sufficient to secure a guilty verdict", Kitani said, adding the court may not approve another period of detention after being criticized for allowing the long detention of Ghosn after the prosecutors first arrested him in November.

Tokyo prosecutors entered Mr Ghosn's residence before 6:00 local time (GMT 21:00) on Thursday and took him to their office on suspicion he had misappropriated Nissan funds for personal use, Japanese broadcaster NHK reported.

Since the initial arrest in November, the treatment of Ghosn has brought Japan's criminal justice system under worldwide scrutiny, with practices such as detaining a suspect for long periods and conducting interrogations without a lawyer present likened by critics to "hostage justice".

Nissan has been indicted alongside Ghosn, as they filed the shareholders' documents that allegedly mis-stated the then chairman's income.

Ghosn has denied any wrongdoing.

Under Japanese law, prosecutors can hold a suspect for 48 hours without charge. "I am confident that if tried fairly, I will be vindicated", he said.

Renault had also announced late Wednesday that a joint Renault-Nissan audit of their Dutch subsidiary RNBV had raised "serious questions" over millions of euros in expenses incurred by Ghosn.

Prosecutors said he had been detained over transfers of Nissan funds totalling $15 million between late 2015 and the middle of 2018.

Such dealer incentives were not directed by Ghosn and the funds were not used to pay any personal debt, the spokesman said.

Chairman Carlos Ghosn leaves his lawyer Junichiro Hironaka's office in Tokyo Japan
Mr Ghosn was re-arrested on Thursday. Reuters

Ghosn had always been lauded as the architect of the alliance between Renault and Nissan - and later Mitsubishi - before his shock arrest in Tokyo in November.

Nissan Chief Executive Hiroto Saikawa expressed surprise about the arrest, although it had been rumored for days.

They suspect that US$5 million of that amount was used by Ghosn for personal expenditure.

The payments in Oman were to Suhail Bahwan Automobiles, which is Nissan's exclusive distributor in the sultanate, people with knowledge of the matter have said. The company is a co-defendant on the under-reporting of compensation charges. "Press conference on Thursday, April 11", Ghosn, widely regarded as being the brain and brawn behind Nissan's rapid turnaround from near-bankruptcy since 1999, tweeted on Wednesday.

As for the pension plan Ghosn signed off on, its validity "can only be assessed on the day on which he would exercise his pension rights".

The ex-auto tycoon was served a fourth arrest warrant by prosecutors over new allegations of aggravated breach of trust.

However, company spokesman Nicholas Maxfield said in a statement that "Nissan's internal investigation has uncovered substantial evidence of blatantly unethical conduct".

During his time in detention, Nissan, Renault SA and Mitsubishi Motors Corp all removed Ghosn, the three-way partnership's architect, as chairman and vowed to strengthen the auto group in his absence. It is unclear when Ghosn's trial may begin.

The businessman has spent about three months in jail waiting for his trial.

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