Ghosn indicted on additional charges including aggravated breach of trust

Andrew Cummings
January 13, 2019

Ghosn, once the most celebrated executives in the auto industry and the anchor of Nissan's alliance with Renault, remains in custody in a Tokyo detention center since his initial arrest in late November.

Ghosn; Greg Kelly, another Nissan executive; and Nissan as a legal entity also were charged Friday with additional underreporting of income, from 2015 through mid-2018. Nissan has dismissed Kelly from his role as a representative director. Those allegations centre on Ghosn's handling of investment losses and payments made to a Saudi businessman.

"In general in such cases in Japan, it is indeed the case that bail is not approved before the first trial does take place", he said, adding that it could be six months before the case comes before a judge.

The twists and turns of the Ghosn case have riveted Japan and the business world and more than 1,000 people queued up from the early hours to get one of only 14 seats in the public gallery on Tuesday.

Ghosn declared his love for Nissan at a dramatic court appearance. He also said the payments to the businessman, Khaled Al-Juffali, via a Nissan subsidiary, were compensation for taking care of hard business problems in the Middle East.

With the latest move, Ghosn and Kelly have been indicted for all the cases for which they were arrested.

Nissan CEO Hiroto Saikawa told reporters later in the day that an ongoing internal probe into the alleged misconduct by Ghosn, who holds Brazilian, French and Lebanese nationality, will be conducted together with Renault.

Following his arrest, Nissan and Mitsubishi removed Mr Ghosn as chairman.

His wife Carole Ghosn issued a statement overnight out of Paris, expressing concern over his sickness.

"I am pleading with the Japanese authorities to provide us with any information at all about my husband's health".

"We are fearful and very anxious his recovery will be complicated while he continues to endure such harsh conditions and unfair treatment", she said in a statement.

Ghosn's lawyers are now able to meet him. Such visits were canceled Thursday but resumed Friday.

Tokyo prosecutors on Friday charged former Nissan Motor Co.

Ghosn holds French, Lebanese and Brazilian passports and his children live in the U.S., his wife said that her husband is living in "harsh conditions" and enduring "unfair treatment", and that authorities have not let the family speak with medical personnel at the detention center.

Japanese prosecutors on Thursday temporarily suspended their interrogations of Ghosn, who began feeling ill on Wednesday night, according to the office of his lawyer Motonari Otsuru.

Prosecutors on Friday slapped the 64-year-old with a formal charge of under-declaring his income by around four billion yen ($37 million) over three years from 2015.

Nissan said an internal investigation began in the middle of past year after whistleblowers came forward.

Both Ghosn and Nissan have been accused of violating Japan's Financial Instruments and Exchange Act for the misstatements submitted during the three years in question.

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