Nissan extends Ghosn probe to different international locations, Munoz govt underneath surveillance, sources mentioned

Nissan Motor Co Ltd has expanded its investigation into the deposed president, Carlos Ghosn, to incorporate transactions that came about in the USA, India and Latin America, mentioned three individuals conscious of the scenario. ;investigation.

One of many Features of Their Inside Investigation The corporate's investigators are investigating the selections made in the USA by Jose Munoz, who led Nissan's operations in North America from 2014 to 2018, the corporate mentioned. officers. Munoz was lately placed on go away due to the investigation, they added.

Nissan introduced this month that Munoz, his agent accountable for efficiency, broadly noticed within the trade as near Ghosn, was on go away "to permit him to help the corporate specializing in particular duties stemming from latest occasions. "

Munoz doesn’t cooperate with the investigators, mentioned two individuals conscious of the investigation, describing his actions as" procrastination ".

One of many sources described Munoz, who presently runs Nissan 's operations in China, as a "individual of curiosity" within the investigation, including that he "n. was unclear whether or not he could be charged with any wrongdoing in any way.


Munoz, 53, didn’t reply to Reuters' requests for remark. Folks acquainted with the probe spoke to Reuters underneath the guise of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the case. A Ghosn lawyer, Motonari Otsuru, mentioned in an e-mail remark: "I have no idea."

A number of the questions requested to Munoz relate to franchise rights of sellers, mentioned one of many sources.

Different points relate to contracts with elements suppliers and repair suppliers that Mr. Munoz had authorised when he was on the helm of Nissan's US operations, mentioned a different supply. the US market are shared with prosecutors. Tokyo prosecutors declined to remark.

Nissan acknowledged that its inside investigation had revealed "substantial and convincing proof of misconduct" from Ghosn and that its scope was broadening.

Ghosn, previously essentially the most well-known govt within the car trade and Nissan's anchor alliance with the French Renault SA, was accused of under-reporting its income. On Friday, he was additionally charged with aggravated breach of belief, accused of transferring to Nissan losses associated to private investments value 1.85 billion yen ($ 17 million). ).

At his first public look since his arrest on November 19, Ghosn declared his innocence in courtroom on Tuesday, saying that he had by no means acquired any undisclosed compensation and that Nissan had not suffered any loss as a result of short-term switch of a private international alternate contract.

This switch was a brief measure. To stop him from resigning and utilizing his retirement funds as collateral, Ghosn mentioned.

Sources near the case additionally mentioned that Nissan investigators have been contemplating the choice of different sellers in a number of international locations the place Ghosn had performed a job within the case. decision-making to see if there had been misconduct.

Particularly, investigators of the automaker examine the position of Ghosn in what Nissan insiders have described to R In 2008, Euters was chosen abruptly by Hover Automotive India Pvt Ltd. (HAI) as a companion of Nissan for advertising and marketing, gross sales, after-sales service and supplier growth in India.

One other firm, TVS, After in depth analysis carried out by Nissan's administration in India, Ghosn personally intervened on the final minute to foyer for HAI, 4 Nissan insiders mentioned. They add that in 2012, HAI turned Nissan's unique nationwide distribution firm in India, regardless of its comparatively inexperienced expertise in distributing autos to sellers.

Reuters has not been capable of finding a consultant for HAI, which, in accordance with the Registrar of Corporations of India. was dissolved on September 11, 2018. TVS didn’t reply to a request for remark.

The investigation additionally examines what seems to be disproportionate funds for Ghosn's bodyguard companies in Brazil, mentioned one of many sources

L & # 39; Ghosn's lawyer, Otsuru, has not responded to requests for touch upon increasing Nissan's investigation into offers in India and Brazil. An American consultant for Ghosn declined to remark.

A supply additionally mentioned that Nissan was conducting audits of some distribution companions within the Center East, together with Al-Dahana, Saudi Arabia, which owns half of a three way partnership known as Nissan Gulf with the group. the opposite half is owned by an entirely owned subsidiary of Nissan Motor.

Al-Dahana, a supplier advertising and marketing and growth firm, is majority-owned by Khaled Al-Juffali, vice chairman of one among Saudi's largest conglomerates. Reuters reported that Al-Juffali is the individual that prosecutors consider has organized a letter of credit score for Ghosn underneath his international alternate contract, after which an organization owned by Al-Juffali acquired 4 funds totaling 14.7 tens of millions of .

Khaled Juffali Firm claimed that funds have been made for professional enterprise functions. Requested in regards to the audit, an organization consultant Khaled Juffali mentioned the corporate was sustaining its earlier statements.

One other Nissan govt, Arun Bajaj, senior vice chairman of human sources and head of Expertise Improvement for Nissan's alliance with Renault and Mitsubishi Motors Corp. have been additionally placed on go away "for assist society by specializing in particular duties arising from latest occasions ".

Bajaj is interviewed and cooperates with Nissan's two inside investigators. as prosecutors, sources mentioned, including that they anticipate him to return to work quickly. The questions weren’t clear within the quick future. Bajaj has not responded to a request for remark from Reuters.

Ghosn is unlikely to be launched on bail and may stay in detention all through his trial, as is usually the case within the Japanese prison system, informed Otsuru reporters this week . The Ghosn trial shouldn’t be anticipated to start till six months later, he added.

Report by Norihiko Shirouzu; Extra studies by Tim Kelly, Kiyoshi Takenaka, Mike Spector, Aditi Shah and Saeed Azhar.

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