Carlos Ghosn Gets His Wish, Could Be Sprung From Jail This Week

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
carlos ghosn gets his wish could be sprung from jail this week

In the auto realm, the term “bailout” doesn’t normally refer to the actual granting of bail, but Renault and alliance partner Nissan wasn’t in need of outside assistance — their former boss was.

After multiple attempts to secure release from a Tokyo detention center met with failure, Carlos Ghosn, arrested on suspicion of financial misconduct on Nov. 19, could gain limited freedom as early as Wednesday. Late Monday, word came that a Tokyo court finally granted bail to the former Renault CEO and Nissan chairman.

The high-flying industry titan who once rented the palace of Versailles for his wedding (using company funds, since paid back) has been behind bars for over 100 days.

According to Bloomberg, bail was set at $8.9 million — a figure reflecting the significance of Ghosn’s alleged crimes. Charged with underreporting his income to Japanese regulators for years and offloading personal investment losses to Nissan, Ghosn will find his movements limited once he walks out of the doors of the facility. Still, it might allow the former executive to celebrate his 65th birthday on Saturday outside a facility that took pride in treating the exec as a common burglar.

The successful bail request came as a result of Ghosn’s new, high-priced legal team, The Japan Times reports, which including an attorney with the nickname “Razor.” Prosecutors moved quickly to block his release. An appeal was filed, pushing Ghosn’s release from as early as today to Wednesday or later. Even if the appeal fails, those prosecutors could choose to file new charges, keeping Ghosn in detention.

In addition to the new legal team, the bail conditions put forward were strict enough to sway the judge. Ghosn, if released, would not be able to travel overseas or contact anyone, with authorities following his every move (out of fear of evidence tampering).

“I believe that we have presented our own convincing application showing that there is indeed no flight risk or risk of tampering with evidence,” Hironaka said.

Ghosn’s lawyers told Japanese media that the exec’s family was prepared to protest his prolonged detention to the United Nations — specifically, the body’s Working Group on Arbitrary Detention.

A trial won’t take place for several months. In the wake of his arrest, Ghosn, who spearheaded the alliance between Renault and Nissan — and who maintains he’s the innocent victim of internal machinations at Nissan — quickly found himself dropped as chairman of Nissan and Mitsubishi, with Renault (under mounting pressure) waiting a couple months longer to replace him as leader. After Ghosn failed to secure bail, the French automaker accepted Ghosn’s resignation and dolled out his responsibilities to two men: new chairman Jean-Dominique Senard and CEO Thierry Bollore.

[Image: Nissan]

Join the conversation
  • Waterview Waterview on Mar 05, 2019

    "The high-flying industry titan who once rented the palace of Versailles for his wedding (using company funds, since paid back) has been behind bars for over 100 days." Interesting that the previous inhabitants of Versailles also rented the place using company (taxpayer) funds. Rather than 100 days in jail, however, they were subject to a much worse fate. Unfortunate that he couldn't keep from blurring the lines . . . . .

    • See 3 previous
    • Waterview Waterview on Mar 05, 2019

      @Steve Biro I honestly hope he's not guilty of using company money to pay for his wedding. Was simply responding to the author's suggestion that he had. Let's hope more investigation proves otherwise.

  • Jatz Jatz on Mar 05, 2019

    I hope he gets some travel privileges because haru basho is in Osaka. Always catch some sumo if you have to be in Japan.

  • Jim Bonham Thanks.
  • Luke42 I just bought a 3-row Tesla Model Y.If Toyota made a similar vehicle, I would have bought that instead. I'm former Prius owner, and would have bought a Prius-like EV if it were available.Toyota hasn't tried to compete with the Model Y. GM made the Bolt EUV, and Ford made the Mach-E. Tesla beat them all fair and square, but Toyota didn't even try.[Shrug]
  • RHD Toyota is trying to hedge their bets, and have something for everyone. They also may be farther behind in developing electric vehicles than they care to admit. Japanese corporations sometimes come up with cutting-edge products, such as the Sony Walkman. Large corporations (and not just Japanese corporations) tend to be like GM, though - too many voices just don't get heard, to the long-term detriment of the entity.
  • Randy in rocklin The Japanese can be so smart and yet so dumb. I'm America-Japanese and they really can be dumb sometimes like their masking paranoia.
  • Bunkie The Flying Flea has a fascinating story and served, inadvertently, to broaden the understanding of aircraft design. The crash described in the article is only part of the tale.