Carlos Ghosn arrested again in Japan [update]
Ghosn denies the charges.
Japanese authorities have arrested former Nissan, Renault, and Mitsubishi boss Carlos Ghosn for the fourth time since November 2018. He faces new charges related the original allegations of financial misconduct that landed him in a Japanese jail cell for months. The former executive hasn't gone on trial yet.
NHK, Japan's public broadcaster, reported Ghosn was arrested on new suspicions of aggravated breach of trust. He allegedly funneled money from bank accounts linked to Nissan to a dealership in Oman operated by an acquaintance. Some of the money was sent to a Lebanon-registered company via the bank account of one of the dealership's executives. It was used to purchase Ghosn's yacht, anonymous sources told NHK, and some of it ended up in the hands of an investment firm run by Ghosn's son. All told, Nissan lost $5 million between 2015 and 2018.
Lawyers representing Ghosn claim the payments made to the dealership in Oman were legal, transparent, and made at the request of Nissan executives. They added Ghosn purchased the yacht without Nissan's involvement.
Ghosn was finally allowed to post bail less than a month ago after spending 108 days in a Tokyo detention center. The Associated Press reported he was taken back to the same detention center after his arrest. It's unclear how long he will there this time. The decision to re-arrest him is a controversial one, but Shin Kukimoto, the deputy chief prosecutor at the Tokyo District Prosecutors' Office, said his team is dealing with a new case that involves new crimes, new motives, and new people. Ghosn, on the other hand, cried foul and stressed his innocence.
"My arrest this morning is outrageous and arbitrary. It is part of another attempt by some individuals at Nissan to silence me by misleading the prosecutors. Why arrest me except to try to break me? I will not be broken. I am innocent of the groundless charges and accusations against me," he said in a statement.
On April 2, he announced plans to hold a press conference on April 11 to tell the world his side of this on-going saga, which he claims is a carefully-organized coup. Whether he'll be able to speak as planned is unclear at this point.
Stay tuned for more on this developing story.