Sunday 15 September 2019

Japan prosecutors to hold Nissan chairman for 10 more days

Nissan’s board of directors is due to meet on Thursday and decide if it will dismiss Carlos Ghosn.

(AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)
(AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)

By Yuri Kageyama, Associated Press

Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn will be detained for another 10 days following his arrest on suspicion of falsifying income reports by millions of dollars and misusing company assets for personal gain, Japanese media has reported.

Nissan’s board of directors is due to meet on Thursday and decide if it will dismiss Ghosn and the company’s representative director, Greg Kelly. They were arrested on Monday on suspicion of collaborating in the wrongdoing.

Their detention was extended on Wednesday for another 10 days, Kyodo News service reported. It cited the Tokyo District Court, which must grant approval for such detentions.

Under Japanese law, suspects can be held for 20 days per possible charge without an official indictment. Additional charges can be tagged on, resulting in longer detentions. Neither Ghosn nor Kelly has been charged so far.

Carlos Ghosn has been arrested (AP Photo/Michel Euler, File)

Ghosn is suspected of under-reporting 44.6 million (£34.8) in income from 2011 to 2015, according to Tokyo prosecutors.

The maximum penalty, upon conviction for violating finance and exchange laws is 10 years in prison, a 10 million yen (£69,000) fine, or both.

Detainees undergoing interrogation in the Tokyo area are generally held in a centre that is separate from the prison for those who have been convicted and sentenced. It is supposed to be nicer than a prison but it is austere with limited access to outside visitors.

Prosecutors have not confirmed where he is being held.

Despite the arrests, analysts said the impact on Nissan’s sales would likely be minimal.

“I’d be surprised if it impacts car sales very much,” said Christopher Richter, auto analyst for CLSA Securities Japan.

“Consumers are discerning enough to say: This car, the wheels might fall off so I’m not going to buy it. This car company, the executive might have done something kind of dodgy, but do I like the car or not.”

PA Media

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