Nissan's executive Munoz takes leave of absence in wake of Ghosn arrest

Nissan's executive Munoz takes leave of absence in wake of Ghosn arrest

Nissan Chief Performance Officer Jose Munoz, who oversaw the Japanese automaker's global strategies, is taking a leave of absence to work on "special tasks arising from recent events", the company said Saturday, referring to the arrest of former Chairman Carlos Ghosn. Regarding this charge, the lawyer revealed that the minutes of a board meeting that were found late past year said the transfer caused "no cost for the company".

Prosecutors, by this time, must make an ultimate decision as to whether or not to indict Ghosn over the myriad charges facing him. "He wants to explain in court that he did not cause damage to the company and had no intention of doing so".

Mr Ghosn was ousted days after his arrest on Nov 19.

Former Nissan executive Greg Kelly, who has been charged with conspiring to under-report Ghosn's income, has been released on bail after the court ruled against extending his detention while he awaits trial. He is scheduled to receive an operation for neck pain.

Last month, Paris asked Tokyo for help to save the Nissan-Renault-Mitsubishi Alliance following the arrest of Carlos Ghosn, the Brazilian-French national chairman of the automotive group who was arrested in Japan in November and stripped of his Nissan chairmanship on suspicion of financial misconduct.

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Article 34 of Japan's Constitution stipulates that "no person shall be arrested or detained without being at once informed of the charges against him or without the immediate privilege of counsel".

If proven, each of Ghosn's alleged offenses may carry a sentence of as much as 10 years, prosecutors have said. Nissan's board of directors dismissed Ghosn as chairman shortly following his arrest.

Kelly denies any wrongdoing. He had been considered one of the sector's most powerful executives as head of the Renault-Nissan alliance.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated the day Ghosn will appear in court.

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