By on April 3, 2019

Carlos Ghosn Rogue Introduction - Image: Nissan

Happy to relegate Carlos Ghosn to the past, Renault has announced its former CEO will soon leave the company’s executive board, along with Cherie Blair, wife of former British prime minister Tony Blair. Annette Winkler, the ex-head of Daimler’s Smart brand, will be proposed as the new director at the company’s annual meeting in June, according to the automaker.

The company also decided that Ghosn is not entitled to an annual retirement salary of about 765,000 euros a year due to an internal probe that identified “questionable and concealed practices and violations of the group’s ethical principles.”

Of course, Ghosn maintains he was the victim of a corporate coup masterminded by Nissan executives. The ousted exec recently claimed he’s “getting ready to tell the truth about what’s happening” over social media

The defamed industry hero appears to have created the Twitter page earlier this month, which brings up questions about its validity — especially since Ghosn’s $9 million bail is supposed to preclude him from using the internet. Whether or not the page is being run by the man himself, or on his behalf, Twitter saw fit to verify it as authentic and “Ghosn” told the world to expect a press conference on April 11th.

According to Reuters, his lawyer, Junichiro Hironaka, told reporters the tweet did not violate those terms. Hironaka also said there have been no new requests from Tokyo prosecutors after Japan’s Yomiuri newspaper and other media outlets reported authorities were preparing a new case against Ghosn over payments the automaker made to a business partner in Oman — something Renault brought up when discussing his retirement pay.

From Reuters:

Prosecutors are in discussions with the Supreme Public Prosecutors Office and others and plan to make a decision soon on whether to prosecute Ghosn on further charges of aggravated breach of trust, the newspaper said, citing sources involved in the case.

A spokesman for the Tokyo prosecutors office said he was not aware of any new investigation when contacted by Reuters.

Ghosn’s spokesman has previously said payments of $32 million made over nine years were rewards for the Oman firm being a top Nissan dealer. Such dealer incentives were not directed by Ghosn and the funds were not used to pay any personal debt, the spokesman said.

Sources told Reuters earlier this week that Renault had alerted French prosecutors after uncovering suspect payments to a Renault-Nissan business partner in Oman while Ghosn was chief executive of the French automaker.

Ghosn stepped down as Renault’s chairman and CEO in January, but has repeatedly denied accusations of financial misconduct at Nissan, encouraging Renault to undertake its own internal investigation.  Renault and Nissan both uncovered payments made under Ghosn that allegedly went toward corporate jets, a yacht, and unrelated family businesses, leading the French carmaker to alert local authorities.

Meanwhile, Ghosn is awaiting trial in Japan over charges that he failed to report $82 million in Nissan pay that was arranged to flow following his retirement. He was also indicted for temporarily transferring personal investment losses to Nissan and steering $14.7 million in company funds to the Middle East.

[Image: Nissan]

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