Tokyo court rejects appeal of former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn

Gladys Abbott
January 13, 2019

Lawyers said on Thursday, January 10, the executive had developed a fever, which has subsided since.

He had already been charged for under-reporting his income for the five years up to 2015. 11 on new charges of aggravated breach of trust under the Companies Act for allegedly shifting his personal investment losses to the company. Suspects are often re-arrested on suspicion of new charges periodically to keep them in custody while prosecutors attempt to build a case, and bail is the exception more than the rule.

"We have judged that we can secure a guilty" verdict against Ghosn, said Shin Kukimoto, deputy head at the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office.

But his hopes of being granted bail appear dim, with his chief lawyer admitting at a recent news conference that his client could stay in detention for at least another six months until his trial begins, citing the complexity of a case involving documents in both Japanese and English.

But afterwards Ghosn's lawyer said it would be "very difficult" to win bail and it could be months before his case is heard.

Ghosn was initially arrested on November 19 last year for allegedly understating about 5 billion yen (45 million dollars) of his 10-billion-yen compensation during the five years through March 2015.

One of the most recognisable foreign executives in Japan, Ghosn was led into Tokyo District Court in handcuffs and with a rope around his waist and was noticeably thinner.

Nissan last weekend put two executives close to Ghosn on leave of absence, suggesting that the internal investigation into the alleged misconduct could be spreading.

The judge said his ongoing detention was justified because he poses a flight risk and could tamper with evidence if released.

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Following the indictments, his defense team requested an end to his detention.

The arrest and detention of Ghosn, once among the most celebrated executives in Japan, has sparked worldwide criticism of Japan's justice system, which effectively allows suspects to be held indefinitely and questioned without a lawyer present.

Ghosn's defence team had made the bid for his release on the basis that one of the charges against him, an alleged breach of trust of the company, was null and void. He was transferred to a bigger room with a Western-style bed, according to Ohtsuru.

He complained about the rice-based diet at the detention centre and his family says he has lost up to 20kg.

This week he suffered a fever that prompted prosecutors to suspend their interrogations, though his lawyer said Friday his temperature had gone back down.

Ghosn declared his love for Nissan at a dramatic court appearance.

Ghosn has admitted that the ownership of the contract was temporarily transferred from his private asset management firm to Nissan but said the automaker incurred no losses.

Nissan said earlier that its board had also met Thursday, when directors had received "an updated report" on its own investigations into Ghosn's alleged misconduct.

Other reports by LeisureTravelAid

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