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BUSINESS / ECONOMY

Auto tycoon Ghosn re-arrested

Tokyo, Dec 21 (IANS) Former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn was re-arrested on Friday on fresh charges, Japanese media reported. It came a day after courts surprised observers by paving the way for his release on bail.

Friday’s arrest came on a new charge of aggravated breach of trust, media reports said.

According to Japanese broadcaster NHK, prosecutors now accuse Ghosn of shifting a private investment loss of over $16 million onto Nissan in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.

This latest move means he will remain in prison so prosecutors can question him further.

Ghosn has spent the last month in prison, accused of misusing funds and hiding $80 million of income, the BBC reported.

On Thursday, a court rejected a request to extend his detention, which meant he could apply to be released on bail.

Ghosn has not yet responded to the latest allegation but he has consistently denied all prior accusations made against him, the BBC report added.

He was first arrested in Tokyo in November as allegations of financial misconduct surfaced.

If found guilty of those charges he could face up to 10 years in prison as well as a fine of up to $6.2 million, according to Japanese regulators.

Ghosn’s detention has put into doubt the future of the Alliance — a global car manufacturing group that includes Renault, Nissan and Mitsubishi.

While, Nissan and Mitsubishi both sacked Ghosn as chairman after his arrest, Renault has held off, choosing instead to appoint a temporary deputy chief executive to take over the running of the firm.

The auto tycoon’s hero status was so big that his life was serialised in one of Japan’s famous cartoon comic books.

The Brazilian-born of Lebanese descent and a French citizen is known as Le Cost Killer, a comment on the deep cuts he made to revive Renault.

He was once tipped as a potential president of Lebanon, a move he eventually dismissed because he already had “too many jobs”.

–IANS

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