Japanese Court Extends Former Nissan CEO's Detention

Japanese Court Extends Former Nissan CEO's Detention

Police have an extra eight days to question ex-Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn after Tokyo District Court extended his detention period today.

Since his re-arrest on April 4 at his home in Tokyo, barely a month after his release on bail, the fallen auto magnate is in the prison of Kosuge district (north of the capital), where he is regularly interrogated by the investigators of the prosecutor's office.

The new arrest warrant for Ghosn was served over an allegation of aggravated breach of trust in connection with the misuse of Nissan funds paid to an Omani distributor.

Ghosn's defense team, in documents prepared after Ghosn was arrested for the fourth time by Tokyo prosecutors last week - and the details of which have not been reported earlier - allege the recent arrest was created to interrupt the defense's preparation and force a confession.

Last week, Nissan ousted Ghosn from the board and appointed French partner Renault SA's chairman Jean-Dominique Senard to replace Ghosn. It also includes Nissan Chief Executive Hiroto Saikawa and Mitsubishi CEO Osamu Masuko. The scandal also remains a troubling distraction.

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Ghosn has already been indicted on charges of violating Japan's financial instruments law by underreporting remuneration to regulators, and aggravated breach of trust in relation to the alleged transfer of private investment losses to Nissan.

His lengthy detention has sparked some criticism of the Japanese justice system, derided by some as "hostage justice" as suspects can be held for a long time without formal charges. Details have not been disclosed.

Ghosn led the Japanese automaker for two decades and says he is innocent of the accusations that led to his downfall. His lawyers, who have protested the detention as unfair, filed a new appeal with the court on the latest detention extension.

Renault owns 43 percent of Nissan. Nissan shareholders approved Ghosn's ouster from the board this week, and tapped Senard in his place.

In a video statement released recently by his lawyers, Ghosn said some Nissan executives feared Renault would swallow Nissan and plotted against him.

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