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Lawyers say Ghosn used Nissan-Mitsubishi venture to inflate pay

EPA-EFE/ETIENNE LAURENT
Nissan Chairman Carlos Ghosn waits for French President Emmanuel Macron (not pictured) for a visit of the Renault factory in Maubeuge, northeastern France, 08 November 2018 (reissued 26 November 2018). Media reports on 26 November 2018 state the board of Mitsubishi Motors has sacked Ghosn from his position as chairman over his alleged financial misconduct. Ghosn, CEO of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, was earlier sacked from his position as Nissan chairman 22 November 2018.

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Former Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn used a joint venture between Nissan and Mitsubishi to inflate his pay and to cover a personal tax debt, lawyers for the automakers said.
Ghosn was arrested in Japan in 2018 on financial misconduct charges but fled to Lebanon amid a trial for alleged financial misconduct. He is accused for underreporting his income for years. He has denied the charges, and has since launched court cases against the companies, arguing he was fired unlawfully.
One of the cases is in the Netherlands. The lawyers said Monday that Ghosn granted himself a salary and bonus worth €7.3 million in total without the knowledge of the boards of Nissan and Mitsubishi.
Nissan suffered a lot since the scandal, as it has been accused of falsifying Ghosn’s pay in financial statements. The company fired him as chairman, and has since had difficulties getting back on track.
Lawyers said there was also evidence that Ghosn made the Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance pay a personal French tax debt of €498,000 in 2018, and that he had arranged a “pre-payment” of his 2019 salary in 2018 to avoid a scheduled increase in Dutch income tax rates.
“Nissan and Mitsubishi publicly shamed Ghosn. Their reports and accusations were never put to Ghosn. There was no due process”, Ghosn’s lawyer told the court.
The court said it would postpone any decision on documents until 26 March, when Nissan and Mitsubishi file their case on the reasons for Ghosn’s dismissal.

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