Former Nissan chief Carlos Ghosn was rearrested early Thursday in Tokyo while out on bail, local media said, as prosecutors investigate a new charge against the auto tycoon. Prosecutors entered Ghosn's temporary accommodation in central Tokyo in the early morning hours, and the Franco-Brazilian-Lebanese executive left shortly afterwards in a car with the investigators, public broadcaster NHK and others said.
The former head of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Motors alliance is facing allegations of falsifying financial reports and breach of trust. The breach of trust allegations center on a temporary transfer of Ghosn's investment losses to Nissan's books that he says caused no losses to the automaker. The charge also points to payments to a Saudi businessman that he says were for legitimate services. Earlier, Nissan had dismissed Ghosn as chairman. The 65-year-old was released on bail on March 6 after more than 100 days in detention.
The news came after it emerged that lawyers for Renault—Nissan’s parent company that Ghosn also led—have handed over documents to prosecutors showing “millions of euros” in payments to the firm’s distributors in Oman.
An internal probe by Nissan, which is cooperating with prosecutors, has found Ghosn had approved over $30 million in payments to a distributor in Oman, a person familiar with the matter confirmed to AFP.
Some of this money ended up in personal accounts, or used for purchases and investments by Ghosn—mainly to buy a yacht and make investments via his son’s firm—according to this person.
In a bolt from the blue that rocked Japan and the business world, Ghosn was arrested on November 19 after prosecutors stormed his private jet at a Tokyo airport and took him into custody.
He spent more than 100 days in detention with limited access to lawyers before being released on bail of nearly USD 9 million.
Nissan swiftly removed him as chairman and is also expected to remove him from the board at an extraordinary shareholders’ meeting slated for Monday.