Carlos Ghosn, the former Nissan Motor chairman who was released on $9 million bail last month following three earlier indictments for financial wrongdoing, was arrested today on new charges by Tokyo prosecutors.
Japanese public broadcaster NHK first reported the news that Ghosn was brought in for questioning.
Ghosn released a statement following his arrest on what he described as “additional legally dubious charges.”
“My arrest this morning is outrageous and arbitrary,” Ghosn said in the statement emailed to TechCrunch. “It is part of another attempt by some individuals at Nissan to silence me by misleading the prosecutors. Why arrest me except to try to break me? I will not be broken. I am innocent of the groundless charges and accusations against me.”
“After being wrongly imprisoned for 108 days, my biggest hope and wish today is for a fair trial. I was scheduled to present my story in a press conference next week; by arresting me again, the prosecutors have denied me that opportunity, for now, but I am determined that the truth will come out. I am confident that if tried fairly, I will be vindicated.”
NHK showed a video clip of a van leaving Ghosn’s residence Thursday and reported that prosecutors plan to question and are ready to “rearrest” Ghosn on suspicion of aggravated breach of trust. The prosecutors suspect Ghosn of misappropriating company funds for personal use.
The new line of questioning and ultimate rearrest follows fresh accusations that Ghosn used company funds for personal use. It also comes less than a day after Ghosn tweeted — in a new verified Twitter account — “I’m getting ready to tell the truth about what’s happening. Press conference on Thursday, April 11.”
Ghosn is one of the auto industry’s best-known leaders. His fall not only disrupted the Nissan-Renault-Mitsubishi Alliance, it rippled throughout and then beyond the auto industry. It was even felt in the venture world.
Last month, Backstage Capital founder and Managing Partner Arlan Hamilton revealed the firm was struggling to close a $36 million fund that aims to invest in women of color. Two separate anchor investors fell through, Hamilton told Axios at the time, and that Backstage also lost out on a $5 million “operations deal” with the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance after Ghosn’s arrest.