Carlos Ghosn Indicted Again, Kept In Detention, Has Fever

JAN 11 2019 BY MARK KANE 78

Well… it seems that Carlos Ghosn will not be free anytime soon

Things are getting worse for Carlos Ghosn (former Nissan CEO and leader of Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance), who remains in detention in Japan.

Nissan announced that it filed a criminal complaint against Ghosn – “on the basis of Ghosn’s misuse of a significant amount of the company’s funds” (see full press release below).

It’s the third set of indictions, which will prevent the release Carlos Ghosn. Nissan seems to be very hostile against its former CEO in two ways – first, by placing a complaint on the day of upcoming release (which makes us think that it wants to extend detention to maximum, like the prosecutors) and second because it “calls for strict penalties”.

The 64-years old Ghosn, who is, by the way, a U.S. citizen, has been in detention since November 19, and is rejecting all allegations (basically every day). He is not even allowed to contact family and every day is interrogated. The situation already caused him to lose 10 kg of weight and according to the to latest reports –  he is tired and “suffering from a high fever at the detention center in Tokyo”. Ghosn’s Lawyer said that he expects that the first trial (out of three) will start maybe in six months. We are not sure whether there is a chance for bail.

The Japanese justice system gives prosecutors extreme power and when they arrest someone, the chances he/she will be called innocent and released is maybe 1%. Detention is extended indefinitely, which seems to make for a massive amount of false confessions – “99% conviction rate for criminal indictments” says all. Prosecutors act like that to not lose face on false allegations – in other words, they are encouraged by the system to literally destroy suspects (which is explained broadly in one of videos below).

The guilt of Carlos Ghosn is not proven and not certain. We are not even sure whether it’s important, as many reasonably argue that the whole thing is a duel between Nissan/Japan and Renault/France to prevent a full merger and acquisition of Nissan by Renault in the future. Ghosn, who once rescued Nissan as CEO, assigned by Renault, would be in such a scenario sacred to take over the company from Japan. Which scenario is true, and why does Nissan (who internally started the case) seem to be hostile to Ghosn? Time will tell. Only one thing is certain, the Japanese justice system is not acceptable.

Renault so far hasn’t taken action, however the French Government (which owns 15% share of Renault) apparently is prepared to announce a new CEO. In press release, Renault said:

“The review process has examined the compensation of the current Groupe Renault executive committee members for the financial years 2017 and 2018 and has concluded that it is both in compliance with applicable laws and free from any fraud,”

Nissan press release:

Regarding violation of Japan’s Companies Act by former Nissan chairman, and violation of Financial Instruments and Exchange Act

YOKOHAMA, Japan – Today, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.’s former Representative Director and Chairman Carlos Ghosn was indicted for aggravated breach of trust under Japan’s Companies Act. Prior to the charge being laid, Nissan filed a criminal complaint based on the same violation against Ghosn with the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office.

Nissan filed the criminal complaint on the basis of Ghosn’s misuse of a significant amount of the company’s funds. Nissan does not in any way tolerate such misconduct and calls for strict penalties. Nissan is continuing its own internal investigation into potential illegal expenditure of its funds.

Also today, Ghosn and former Representative Director Greg Kelly were indicted for violating the Japan Financial Instruments and Exchange Act, namely making false disclosures in annual securities reports. Nissan, as a legal entity, was also indicted for the same violation.

Nissan takes this situation extremely seriously and expresses its deepest regret for any concern caused to its stakeholders.

Nissan will continue its efforts to strengthen its governance and compliance, including making accurate disclosures of corporate information. The efforts will be made in consideration of the discussions and recommendations of the company’s recently established Special Committee for Improving Governance.

Carlos Ghosn case in the news


  • Nissan initiated an internal investigation about Carlos Ghosn’s earnings
  • November 19 – Carlos Ghosn and Greg Kelly were surprisingly arrested in Japan over alleged financial misconduct at Nissan (under-reporting his income of some $44 million in 2010-2015)
  • November 22 – The board of directors for Nissan removed Carlos Ghosn and Greg Kelly from Representative Director positions (Ghosn was also Chairman of the Board).
  • November 26 – Mitsubishi Motors removed Carlos Ghosn from his role as Chairman of the Board and Representative Director, following Nissan.
  • Renault abstained from the reaction
  • Nissan was unable to choose a successor for Ghosn
  • December 10 – Carlos Ghosn and Kelly were re-arrested on allegations of under-reporting his income for the subsequent three years
  • December 20 – Tokyo District Court unexpectedly rejected prosecutors’ request to extend Ghosn’s and Kelly’s. Ghosn was expected to be free on December 21
  • December 21 – Carlos Ghosn was re-arrested on a new allegation of making Nissan shoulder $16.6 million in personal investment losses. Kelly was not included so he was released from jail on December 25 after being granted bail.
  • December 31 – The Tokyo District Court extends Carlos Ghosn’s detention by another 10 days to at least January 11.
  • January 8 – Carlos Ghosn has appeared in court for the first time
  • January 11 – Carlos Ghosn was indicted on third time, detention extends

Source:,, Renault

Categories: Mitsubishi, Nissan, Renault

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78 Comments on "Carlos Ghosn Indicted Again, Kept In Detention, Has Fever"

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There appears to be so many people who were aware of all the goings on, nearly halve the BOD’s should be indicted, so why aren’t they ?

Another Euro point of view

Exactly, they just want to break him. That’s japanese “justice”. Civilized from far away but far from being civilized apparently.

I’m no expert on Japanese jurisprudence, but my guess would be it has part of it’s basis in postwar Japan where justice was meted out by military courts, and most know of the old saying military justice is to justice as military music is to music.
Btw they have fairly liberal ideas about what constitutes cruel and unusual punishment, in that most experiencing incarceration in Japan find it to be so.

Japanese justice system: All suspects are guilty, PERIOD. Otherwise, they wouldn’t be suspects, now would they.

In japan : shady business goes punished to jail.
In US : shady business goes rewarded to presidency.

No one accused him of shady business until he won the election. In fact, he might’ve won another NAACP award had he lost the election even if he did exactly the same as now.

If your money laundering with Russia a smart business person wouldn’t put himself in the spotlight.

“No one accused him of shady business until he won the election.”

Say what?!?!

Two words: Trump University.

“The Donald” is a mob boss running a criminal family business. This is becoming more and more clear, with more and more supporting evidence, as his business activities are investigated.

You’re right! I forgot about Clinton’s white water shady business dealings before being elected to presidency.

But take heart, mob boss Bill served two terms and wife served in senate, so we have another term to look forward to for DUMP and maybe Ivanka in senate after.

Oh, I guess Trump University wasn’t a shady business. Or maybe the SIX bankruptcies that trumper’s businesses filed were just proper business practices? Maybe when he and his dad plead out a racial discrimination claim by the Justice Department? How about when Trump and his charity lined their own pockets with donated funds?

I’ll tell you what: All you have to do is Google donald boys’ shady business practices and you can read volumes. He’s actually the poster boy for shady stuff. Wow, you are indeed drinking the Kool-Aid.

The only SHADY thing in this case is Nissan.

boycott nissan

Won’t be hard for EV enthusiasts since Nissan keeps putting out crap, as in the 2019 Leaf.

The women the media praise, and who had a temper tantrum the night she lost, has a foundation that had countries as major donors, has seen it’s donations from countries dry up completely since then.

That other guy who won, shut down his foundation, after winning the election, so as not to be influenced by such “donations”.

You won the Fake News Award.
She also ran a child-porn ring in the basement of a pizza shop, that didn’t have a basement. Remember?

Abe Lincoln said “You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.

I had no idea just how many people fit into that second category that Honest Abe mentioned, until recently. Even after all that the Orange One has done to damage this country and destroy its alliances and institutions, while encouraging and enabling our foreign enemies, he still gets ~35% approval rating among Americans.

I realize, “Mega”, that you prefer “alternative facts” to real ones, but here’s just one reality check: The Trump Foundation wasn’t shut down until quite recently (December 18, 2018), after multiple criminal investigations revealed much evidence of using what appears to be a fake “charity” for money laundering, and after exposure of how very little it has been used for anything which actually qualifies as charity.

The japs are asking for retaliations.

Hopefully, your old age is showing by the use of that word.

“old age”? Now, that’s a serious accusation. About “japs”, I agree with your objection.

Knowing Japan he’s probably suffering from radiation poisoning!

@groingo said: “Knowing Japan he’s probably suffering from radiation poisoning!”

Likely not radiation poisoning… that’s more a Russian thing.

Perhaps a more Japanes method like a tad of blowfish poison added to Ghosn’s daily rice ration.

In all seriousness Ghosn refusing to throw in the towel likely has some guys at Nissan in a panic… hopefully they not poisoning Ghosn.

Even though Ghosn (innocent or not) has little chance of a fair trial under the Japanese legal system Nissan has a serious problem on their hands because of Ghosn’s willingness to put up a fight that is drawing wide public attention to this matter and public opinion is starting to form in favor of Ghosn:

That Ghosn is a victim of Nissan back-stabbing execs out to stop Ghosn from further implementing Ghosn’s “Global Alliance” vision.

CDAVIS is absolutely correct.

AMT is also absolutely correct… Boycott Nissan !!

Time to Hang Large Railroad Trestle Sized Banners, on such Trestles that cross over Highways and Streets, stating “Boycott Nissan! Free Carlos Ghosn!”

I would say, first determine the facts and then based on those facts, boycott Nissan if it turns out that Nissan is guilty of wrong doing. At this point, I don’t think anybody here knows any of the facts, only guesses and opinions.

I’ve said this previous posts about him, but I can’t understand how we (the US), and particularly MacArthur, left them with this poor justice system. We created their modern government from scratch during the post-WW2 occupation. I’m not sure why we didn’t give them a real justice system. Maybe they broke it after we left?

We (US) didn’t leave no such thing. US let the Japanese determine their course, didn’t even prosecute the emperor’s family who were most likely responsible for rape of Nanking. The situation in Japan, like most things, is more nuanced.

If one only knew how messed up other countries are, one appreciates how great US really is despite our faults.

Ignoring your double-negative.

Read the history of the occupation. MacArthur had no love for the Japanese and wasn’t a pushover (he wanted nukes to win the Korean war). He let the emporer stay as a toothless figurehead because leaving him made the Japanese more compliant. He also handed them their constitution. I guess he didn’t get into the minutia of a fair system of law & order.

In any case, the justice system they have is clearly very broken.

“I guess he didn’t get into the minutia of a fair system of law & order”

Precisely my point and accurate. In general US doesn’t seem to get into tiny details when “nation building” after we bomb the hell out of them.

… just to see them now doing atrocities with US citizens like these two men.

Do Not Read Between The Lines

As other people have noted, this isn’t special treatment of a foreigner, this is what happens to Japanese people on a regular basis.

Yup. Someone on the InsideEVs forum commented that his Japanese-born wife found the treatment of Ghosn, after being arrested, to be perfectly normal, and was puzzled at a fuss being made over it.

What seems rather odd, and suggestive (to me) of Ghosn being the victim of political maneuvering, is that he was actually arrested for what appears to be nothing more than some irregularities on how he reported his income for tax purposes. Not, so far as I can tell from what I’ve read, actual evidence that he defrauded the Japanese government of paying his taxes, but merely some irregularities in how he reported various parts of his rather complex income and compensation.

Well not really a regular basis, due to the very low crime rate in Japan. Maybe their system isn’t broken at all and is acting as a fantastic deterrent.

I don’t know that the current state of the Japanese criminal justice system is much different from what the U.S. had in many of the less progressive States of the union in the late ’40s. That was well before Miranda rights, before the “fruit of the poisoned tree” decisions ruled out evidence, let alone the way in which the U.S. courts have these days tied themselves up in knots bending over backwards to make sure the rights of the accused are protected… while ignoring the rights of the victims. In fact, it’s become so difficult to prosecute anyone for a serious crime in the U.S. that now 90% or more of cases are handled by plea bargaining… in which the accused pleads guilty to a crime he didn’t commit in order to escape being put on trial for the crime he actually is accused of committing. (See the movie “…And Justice for All”.) Beating a confession out of a suspect, especially if that suspect was not rich enough to afford a good lawyer, was quite routine for police in the U.S. before the civil rights movement of the 1960s. For true Justice in a criminal justice system, there ought to… Read more »

This is atrocious, what sort of justice system they have. Japanese are intolerant people, just boycott their country and the products.
Basically they are saying that foreigners cannot do business in Japan while they will sell all they can to the rest of the World.
They want to avenge the whole World for the atom bombing, they need to be stopped.

I will authorize releasing the Trump on them!

Boycott Toyota.
They refuse to give electric anyway.

Another shady company with anti-EV scam ads. Hopefully EU fines them soon for scam anti-EV ads, money better spent on chargers rather than scammy hybrids without plugs.

“Japanese are intolerant people…”

So are “ugly Americans” who express intolerance for foreigners.

Japan is systematically the most racist country on earth. To say otherwise is complete ignorance.

Except that {“ugly Americans” who express intolerance for foreigners} have absolutely no power in our institutions.

who you don’t let die won’t let you live (English version no good deed goes unpunished)

Gee it’s getting hard to buy an EV from a company that passes the smell test. GM? Volkswagon? and now Nissan. If they keep this up my next EV most certainly won’t be a Leaf. I admire Tesla but they’re out of my price range. Will probably be looking a Korean.

Doesn’t require this to not buy a Leaf. No thermal management, limited rapid charging ability, dead end fast charging standard. It’s too bad because I own a Leaf (2013) and I’m generally happy with it given I bought it used for cheap, but I would definitely not pay good money for a new one. Niro seems to be the best Tesla alternative at this point.

“I admire Tesla but they’re out of my price range. Will probably be looking a Korean.”

You realize the Korean models are about the same price as the still-unavailable base Model 3?

Model 3 nearly as well equipped is 50% more.

You will be promoting dog eating!

Are each of these charges required to be unique?

I think I’d propose that you can be imprisoned for 10 days per charge, and that additional charges may only be added only once… allowing them to dole out one charge at a time like this seems cruel and unusual to me…

Japan is hardly the only modern, rich nation with a deeply dysfunctional justice system. The US is worse. Its conviction rate in federal courts passed 93% in 2012 and is likely above 95% today. Much worse however is that “nearly 100%” of guilty verdicts come from plea bargains, in other words without a trial!

Japan has higher conviction and less protection for accused. Just look at how Carlos is being treated. However, I do acknowledge US has problems with plea bargain. This is one of the saddest story I read.

It’s the Daily Mail, though. They are well known for making stuff up.

That issue of The Economist (at the other end of the quality scale to Daily Mail) included a “special report” I believe was entitled “Justice in America” which is well worth your time reading. Special report is what The Economist calls their deep-dives into a subject, and months of research goes into each, resulting in a collection of related articles that together constitute “the report”.

“IN 1995, a year after Californians voted for a “three strikes and you’re out” law that guaranteed much tougher sentences for criminals who reoffend, Curtis Wilkerson stole a pair of socks that cost $2.50. This is usually counted as a misdemeanour, but a prosecutor in Los Angeles got it classed as a felony. Since Mr Wilkerson had already been convicted of abetting two robberies in 1981, when he was 19, his petty theft was counted as the third strike. He was sentenced to life in prison.”

Extracted from another article in that report:

(You may need to delete your Economist cookies to get around the article limit, if your browser doesn’t do you that service.)

Three strikes law is after one’s been through the criminal justice system twice, convicted, then a third offense. Japan, OTOH, treats even the first time offenders as if they’re murder suspects in US. There’s simply no comparison.

USA we don’t interrogate any more we
call it interviewing the suspect. The interview
only last till they get a signed confession.
The USA justice system is about Money.
If you ain’t got a lot of it stay out it and it is
difficult to win with out it. Court appointed attorney is
losing Money by the minute by representing you.
Prosecuting attorneys have unlimited Money
thru the Tax payers. That is the reason for
the high conviction rates. My opinion only.
Good Luck to All Jack

The US has a Court system, not a Justice system. Way too many criminals get away due to technicalities. Process is more important than justice. A system designed to empower and enrich the lawyers. Plea bargain or parole shouldn’t exist.

A relatively new word, but that is increasingly more common worldwide: LAWFARE.

“Nissan seems to be very hostile against its former CEO in two ways – first, by placing a complaint on the day of upcoming release (which makes us think that it wants to extend detention to maximum, like the prosecutors) and second because it ‘calls for strict penalties’”

Did Nissan place this complaint on his release date and call for strict penalties? Wasn’t it in fact the prosecutors that both placed this complaint and called for strict penalties after they examined Nissan’s corporate records and other evidence, and obtained information from questioning/interrogating Ghosn? Once the criminal investigation of Ghosn began, the prosecutor’s office calls the shots, not Nissan.

I think you’re ignoring just how thoroughly major Japanese corporations, and the Japanese government, are part of the same system; and how much each influences the other.

The Japanese have a saying: “Business is war”.

“Indictions”?! Yes, that’s a word, but its meaning makes no sense here. I think you meant to write “indictments”.

Wow … first the ridiculous whale hunting and now this comical something they call “justice system”? …. it’s time for the civilized world to take a stand. Enough is enough, on both counts.

I would have expected quite few different countries to be running on in this sort “justice” system … Japan was not one of them, until this kauza.

Yeah, but unfortunately things aren’t so great elsewhere either. Every rich country has had the same bad trend with dramatically increased conviction rates. Wikipedia didn’t have a newer number than 2012 for the USA, but it has then risen to 93% from 75% in 1972. Less than one third as many are exonerated in other words. Of course this could be due to better police work, but it certainly need not be. And, much more worrying, nearly all guilty verdicts (in the US) are now based on plea bargains, which means the case doesn’t even go to trial! This problem is spreading to other Western countries too, mainly because of huge pressure to reduce waiting times and costs related to trials. This is a fairly serious issue, and not only for those who may be innocently convicted. A defense attorney offering $1 to a witness to provide a fake alibi for her client commits perjury, but a prosecutor who threatens to being charges with decades-long potential sentences if the same witness doesn’t provide damning evidence is just doing her job. And sentencing isn’t the only thing meant to come out of trials. Truth is another matter. Consider all the people… Read more »

I don’t think most intelligent and educated people would consider US Justice system perfect, but it certainly reeks less to me than what is going on in Japan and particularly in Ghosn’s case. It’s not even close … You always have a right to have a lawyer present before you agree to a plea bargain … Ghosn can be interrogated without a lawyer present and they treat him as guilty already. Quite a difference, regardless how much problem you have with US system. Sorry, Japan just dropped on my scale of respect quite a few floors.

Renault owns a significant portion of Nissan. The japs are cash strapped and are not able to pay, so they resort to shady cheats.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see Nissan execs arrested outside of japan.

At some point I expect Renault to take control and clean out the Nissan board. They’ve been requesting an emergency shareholders meeting several times, but Nissan keeps declining. Nissan has 6 more weeks to make one happen or Renault will be able to force the meeting.

You will be hard pressed to find a lot of Ghosn sympathizers in Japan because of his successful turnaround of Nissan from near bankruptcy rested on aggressive campaigns of “downsizing,” the business euphemism for large-scale firings and his massive compensation package, especially in Japanese norms for CEOs.

Yes, Ghosn has made a lot of enemies in Japan. These rather questionable, possibly trumped-up charges, seem to be the result of that.

What they are doing now Carlos Ghosn trying to break him mentally & physically
is not justice. Just the Facts please. I own a Toyota Prius now. I don’t think I could buy another
Japanese car now.
Good Luck to All

I am with your Jack !

Is the Jap gov mad because Tesla is selling better than Leaf?

I realize you’re only here to bash Tesla, “Eddie”, but not everything is about Tesla. So pipe down and let the adults talk.

“but not everything is about Tesla.” – It’s Not? Amazing! Hmmmm. Let’s see…. Before Tesla Revealed the 1st Roadster, what other OEM was announcing any EV: BEV or PHEV, publicly?

This doesn’t have anything to do with justice. It’s politics. Renault saved helped rebuild Nissan, but now Nissan is the stronger of the two companies. Nevertheless there were signs that Ghosn was going to have Renault take over Nissan.

My guess is that Nissan and the Japanese government were upset over a foreign company taking over an important Japanese company. The proper way to handle it would be to just pass a law not allowing more than 49% ownership of key Japanese industries. But things were probably happening too fast, so they panicked took the sneaky approach and had him arrested on trumped up charges. Now they have to carry through with it to save face and to prevent this powerful guy from getting out and creating havoc.

Is there somewhere we can write letters of support to his family?

If you really want to help, then I suggest it would be a better use of your time to write to your congresscritters and demand that the U.S. State Dept. put pressure on the Japanese government to release Ghosn on bail, or at the very least allow him access to meet with his American lawyers. The Japanese prosecutors have been denying him even that.

Following the advice of the Indivisible movement*, write to your own congresscritter… not somebody else’s, because congresscritters ignore people who don’t vote in their district/State.

*utterly shameless plug 🙂

It’s good to be reminded, at least occasionally, how lucky I am to be an American citizen, with the strong civil rights protection of our Constitution.

There are a lot of things for which the Japanese deserve respect. Sadly, it appears neither their civil rights protection nor the justice of their criminal system are among those things.

And how terrible for Carlos Ghosn to be caught and used as a pawn between two battling corporate giants. 🙁

I did not know that Japan does not have a justice system that’s even worth the name. The sheer range of things one learns by following the energy transition in transport is just amazing.

I feel bad for Mr Ghosn, but it’s a marginal story for an EV site. Yes, this will likely have a material impact on Nissan’s and Renault’s EV plans, but a piece about his conditions in jail is several degrees of separation away from actually discussing EVs.

Also, for all the complaints about Japanese justice, never forget that no system is perfect, and other countries look on the US system with equal horror.

The EV transition doesn’t happen in a vacuum. I find the breadth and scope of this thread to be interesting and informative.

It’s absolutely a shame how Japanese Justice is behaving on this matter. Even if charges were real, I don’t understand why you can keep someone under arrest for so long time without a formal accusation. If the aim is to prevent someone from leaving the country, he could be kept under house arrest.
On the other hand, the image given by Nissan playing this dirty game to get rid of Mr Ghosn is no better.
I used to be a proud Nissan Leaf owner, but I’m loosing the pride to the brand for those actions and their erratic EV policy decissions.