Former Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn flees Japan

Carlos Ghosn has fled from Japan where he was awaiting trial over financial misconduct while head of Nissan

Carlos Ghosn, former Nissan boss, has fled from Japan and travelled to Beirut, Lebanon, where he was awaiting trial over financial misconduct. 

It is unknown how Ghosn managed to escape from Japan where he was being held on bail. However, Ghosn has personally released a statement in which he said he would “no longer be held hostage by a rigged Japanese justice system where guilt is presumed”.

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He went on to say: “I have not fled justice – I have escaped injustice and political persecution. I can now finally communicate freely with the media, and look forward to starting next week.”

Reports have suggested that Ghosn’s legal team are “dumbfounded” by the news and have, so far, been unable to contact him. 

Carlos Ghosn’s fall from grace

In November 2018 Nissan’s board of directors took the decision to sack chairman Carlos Ghosn following his indictment in Japan on charges that he understated his pay.

Nissan’s internal investigation also accused Ghosn of other acts of misconduct including personal use of company assets.

Nissan said its investigation unearthed both Ghosn and former deputy Greg Kelly “reporting compensation amounts in the Tokyo Stock Exchange securities report that were less than the actual amount.” The misconduct was recorded “over many years.”

The statement continued with: “Nissan has been providing information to the Japanese Public Prosecutors Office and has been fully cooperating with their investigation. We will continue to do so.

“Nissan deeply apologizes for causing great concern to our shareholders and stakeholders. We will continue our work to identify our governance and compliance issues, and to take appropriate measures.”

Nissan stresses that the brand’s long-standing partnership with Renault as part of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance “remains unchanged.”

Ghosn steps down a Renault CEO

Carlos Ghosn officially stepped down as the chief executive and chairman of Renault, following a meeting of the company’s board of directors at the beginning of 2019. 

Ghosn decided to voluntarily submit his resignation from his position at the helm of the French car manufacturer. Renault confirmed that it has accepted Ghosn’s resignation and that it has appointed a new CEO and chairman.

As expected, former Michelin chief executive Jean-Dominique Senard was elected as the new Renault chairman during the board meeting, with Thierry Bollore, who ran the business in Ghosn’s absence, being made Renault’s new chief executive. 

Mr Senard also adopted Ghosn’s position as the chairman of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance following his appointment as CEO.

Since then, Renault’s board of directors voted to remove Thierry Bollore from his position as CEO. A permanent replacement has yet to be appointed. 

What will this mean for the future of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance? Let us know your thoughts in the comments…

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