Carlos Ghosn: Ex-Nissan boss assures his innocence in court

Former Chairman of the Board of Directors of Renault's partner Nissan, Carlos Ghosn, who was remanded in Japan, appeared in court on Tuesday. He had applied for a public hearing to hear the specific reason for his pre-trial detention and to give his opinion. According to his son Anthony, he should get ten minutes for this.

He was "wrongly accused," it said in a written statement by the 64-year-olds. His detention was described by Ghosn as "unjustified." The allegations against him are all unfounded. He had - unlike the prosecution shown - Nissan never received references that were not made public.

Ghosn and his former confidant Greg Kelly were arrested on 19 November in Tokyo on suspicion of breach of stock market requirements. It was Ghosn's first public appearance since the arrest. The former Nissan boss is suspected of having declared in Japan for years a much too low income and enriched themselves with company capital of the car maker Nissan.

Kelly was recently released on bail from pre-trial detention. Ghosn, on the other hand, remains in detention for the time being, after the prosecution has made further allegations against the car manager. He is said to have transferred private investment losses to his former employer Nissan. It was not until December 31 that the Tokyo District Court extended the detention order for Ghosn once again until January 11.

Judge Yuichi Tada (above, M.) before the Ghosn hearing; on the right is the defense team


Judge Yuichi Tada (above, M.) before the Ghosn hearing; on the right is the defense team

He entered the courtroom in Tokyo on Tuesday morning in a dark suit without a tie - and with two guards. They then took his handcuffs from him and sat down next to him on a bench in front of his three lawyers. The show was attended by a great deal of public interest: more than 1,100 people had come to the court in Tokyo before the beginning of the hearing to get one of the 14 spectator seats in the courtroom.

The judge justified the detention for Ghosn. There is a risk of flight. In addition, it must be prevented that the accused falsified evidence.

Nissan and the Japanese carmaker Mitsubishi suspended Ghosn because of the affair as chairmen of their boards of directors, Renault officially holds on to him as CEO. However, the business for Renault leads provisionally his deputy Thierry Bollor├ę.