Former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn, who has been in police custody in Japan since November under allegations of financial misconduct, has said in his first court appearance that he had been “wrongly accused and unfairly detained,” the BBC reports.
Japanese prosecutors have said that Ghosn had been under-reporting his pay package and had personally used company assets. He was first arrested on November 19, then re-arrested twice on different charges.
Ghosn says he never received any compensation from Nissan that was not disclosed. His defence team say that accusations are invalid because they are related to future payments that he would receive after retirement.
“I have been wrongly accused and unfairly detained based on meritless and unsubstantiated accusations,” he stated.
His arrest in November came as a shock to the industry and his long detention has been the subject of criticism. However, a judge on Tuesday said that the detention was justified as he posed a flight risk and because there was also a risk of evidence tampering.
If found guilty, the former Nissan chairman faces up to 10 years in prison as well as a fine of up to USD 6.4 million.