Nissan CEO tells staff feels 'dismay' at Ghosn scandal

Carlos Ghosn removed as Nissan chairman

Carlos Ghosn removed as Nissan chairman

Chairman Carlos Ghosn has hired a defense lawyer who once led the Tokyo prosecutors department that arrested the embattled auto executive, sources said November 23.

The Special Investigation Department of the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office arrested Ghosn on November 19 on suspicion of under-reporting his income in Nissan's securities reports.

Ghosn is one of the highest paid chairmen in Japan, and one of the few heads of a company who is a foreigner.

Both Ghosn and Kelly could get up to 10 years in prison, a fine of up to 10 million yen, or both for filing a false financial statement.

The balance of power at Nissan is now tilted toward CEO Hiroto Saikawa, who has emerged as a driving force behind the investigation into Ghosn's alleged wrongdoing.

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Nissan's board voted unanimously on Thursday to remove Ghosn and Kelly from their positions. The board also confirmed that the Alliance partnership with Renault will not be affected. That unevenness has existed since the alliance was formed in 1999.

Ghosn and Kelly will remain on Nissan's board for now as that decision will be up to shareholders. Mitsubishi Motors Corp. was added to the grouping in 2016.

Mr. Bean started trending among Japanese Twitter users, garnering tens of thousands of mentions shortly after news broke that Ghosn was about to be arrested, with the hashtag #Mrビーン (#MrBīn) going viral.

A Nissan spokesman didn't answer a phone call and an email seeking comment on a public holiday in Japan. He is credited with being responsible for forming the Renault-Nissan Alliance and for taking strong measures to help turn around Renault.

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