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Ex-Nissan exec Kelly wants boardroom, not criminal, trial

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By YURI KAGEYAMA

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Nobody cares about number 2 enough to read all that. Ghosn stole the show.

-31 ( +9 / -40 )

“We were involved in trying to solve a business problem, which was: What actions do you take that are lawful to retain a very valuable executive who was underpaid?” Kelly added, referring to Ghosn.

“There is absolutely no evidence,” Yoichi Kitamura, Kelly’s chief attorney, said, adding there was no motive either. “Nissan and the prosecutors got together and concocted this into a criminal case.”

Free Kelly, end this ridiculous three-year charade, and apologize for dragging this older, ailing man away from his home and family for this trivial nonsense.

46 ( +52 / -6 )

Nobody cares about number 2 enough to read all that. Ghosn stole the show.

I read all that. Was hoping to find some inking of a crime committed by Kelly. There was none.

42 ( +51 / -9 )

Saikawa under the same charges merely bowed, quit, and went home. Ghosn had to escape and Kelly will probably die in jail. Lesson for foreigners, don't work for Japanese companies

48 ( +54 / -6 )

"executive who was underpaid" my ass. Glad Nissan finally got rid of Ghosn and his cronies. Hopefully they'll nab Ghosn someday when he eventually flees Lebanon.

-41 ( +11 / -52 )

99% conviction rate???? Innocent or not, he has no chance here. The government will want their pound of flesh to save face after Ghosn done a runner. Someone is gonna have to pay and unfortunately it’s gonna be Kelly.

Could he not press charges of his own - kidnap maybe?

22 ( +28 / -6 )

Ex-Nissan exec Kelly wants boardroom, not criminal, trial

Ex Japanese PM, Shinzo Abe were expecting the same thing. That matter should be handled internally. Especially there was no decision was made for compensation at all, it's only discussion.

https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20200109/p2a/00m/0na/004000c

17 ( +20 / -3 )

Was hoping to find some inking of a crime committed by Kelly. There was none.

The foundational principle of publicly traded companies is transparency and disclosure. You cannot take shareholder's money and keep secrets off the books in the same way you can in a private company. Nissan was planning to pay Ghosn millions after he left the company but there was no way for current shareholders or prospective investors to discover this by reading the annual reports. Failure to make these required disclosures is the crime here.

-9 ( +14 / -23 )

“When you get into your 60s, you’re not looking at a long horizon,” Kelly said. “Every day that you miss with your family, you know, that to me is the stress. To spend 33 months without my family. 

What he really want is to spend time with his family, what he got is solitary confinement plus daily interogation.

He was kept in solitary confinement for 35 days and interrogated daily.

16 ( +17 / -1 )

@M3

Failure to report something that hasn’t happened yet?

Do you work for “pre-crime”??

29 ( +32 / -3 )

executive who was underpaid" my ass. Glad Nissan finally got rid of Ghosn and his cronies. Hopefully they'll nab Ghosn someday when he eventually flees Lebanon.

Not going to happen.

10 ( +18 / -8 )

@M3M3M3

Nissan was planning to pay Ghosn millions after he left the company but there was no way for current shareholders or prospective investors to discover this by reading the annual reports.*

Ghosn confirmed about this in one of his interview, when he explained this alternative is more like amakudari (天下り something that common in Japan. You can find this in most Japanese companies. So it just don't give Ghosn money but he need to be in certain position like advisor or similar where they will pay him generously.

17 ( +18 / -1 )

The real villain is still at large, enjoying his life in exile in the mild Mediterranean climate. Bring him to justice.

-15 ( +9 / -24 )

M3M3M3Today  07:19 am JST

You cannot take shareholder's money and keep secrets off the books in the same way you can in a private company. Nissan was planning to pay Ghosn millions after he left the company but there was no way for current shareholders or prospective investors to discover this by reading the annual reports. Failure to make these required disclosures is the crime here.

Apparently not. According to the Associated Press:

Kelly’s name appeared in only one part of Ghosn’s statements, in a proposal for post-retirement consultancy fees and a non-compete deal that would be paid in return for Ghosn agreeing to not work for a rival. 

Both would have paid for services after retirement and did not have to be disclosed in Nissan Motor Co.’s annual securities reports, which are the focus of the trial.

https://apnews.com/article/japan-business-80b484c4aa8b23846740da16c2d29511

8 ( +12 / -4 )

@M3

Failure to report something that hasn’t happened yet?

Do you work for “pre-crime”??

Exactly…you’ve nailed it! The whole thing is a collusion between the prosecutors and some Nissan Executives who were just trying to remove Ghosn, and Kelly was caught in the crossfire! It’s just sad reading this article about how he was tricked into coming to Japan and kidnapped by the thugs! Shame on Nissan and shame on the prosecutors who all will face the judgment of God for this!

22 ( +28 / -6 )

It’s just sad reading this article about how he was tricked into coming to Japan and kidnapped by the thugs! Shame on Nissan and shame on the prosecutors who all will face the judgment of God for this!

Totally agree doesn't do much for Japan's reputation as an international business destination. This is just another example of a Japanese company resisting internationalisation and modernisation.

24 ( +26 / -2 )

Basically they can hold you in solitary confinement for a long long long time without getting you a lawyer.

14 ( +17 / -3 )

And no translator

13 ( +16 / -3 )

"Ex-Nissan exec Kelly wants boardroom, not criminal, trial"

A Corporate psychopath, or maybe just sycophant, who wants to be judged only by fellow Corporate psychopaths...well, it would be a jury of his peers. But, of course, he is 'innocent' and the accusers and prosecutors the 'bad' guys. Nicest guy on the block his neighbors say and, after all, it's just money...and, somehow, after thirty years mixing with and doing the bidding of psychopaths, he has retained his childhood innocence...maybe so, maybe not. 'Justice' is a slippery concept for us Humans at the best of times but, then so is 'honesty'. And $10 million is "underpaid"? One guy. And he feels $20 million would only be fair? What would that amount to in raises for the actual producers of Nissan's wealth, the workers? And THIS is what we accept as Human Reality...honestly?

-17 ( +5 / -22 )

In the end, there may be no winners in this sordid story.

The can be no winners. The entire thing from start to finish has been disgusting and casts a dark shadow on the entire J business culture and judiciary.

Kelly just the poor sod sucked into the black hole, cause we all know there must be a scapegoat and those pulling the strings obviously lack a moral compass of any sorts. If he goes to jail it will be plain evil.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

PieLover 07:00 am JST

"executive who was underpaid" my ass. Glad Nissan finally got rid of Ghosn and his cronies.

William Bjornson 07:57 am JST

A Corporate psychopath, or maybe just sycophant … And $10 million is "underpaid"? One guy. And he feels $20 million would only be fair? 

We can argue that corporate (and sports) salaries have become too high, but just because a person is competitively paid well doesn’t make him a criminal.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

“We were involved in trying to solve a business problem, which was: What actions do you take that are lawful to retain a very valuable executive who was underpaid?” Kelly added, referring to Ghosn.""

In a normal ethically correct company yes it is true that this matter is handled within the company and by the BOD, but this is NOT a normal company, it is known for scandals and bribes, and once the government got involved an escape goat is needed, shamefully it could be you Mr. Kelly or anyone they could put there hands on.

This is why Nissan will never be as good as Toyota, Honda, Suzuki or most of the Ethically correct Japanese companies.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Ghosn, as chairman of the board and with the loyalists he appointed, controlled that boardroom, so no way anything could have been settled there. Shareholders could have pushed him out, but why would they? This was a classic case of the agents taking action to protect their own butts at the expense of the owners. And of course, xenophobic racist prosecutors happily playing along.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

@Pacific Saury,

Failure to report something that hasn’t happened yet?

This gets to the heart of issue. Companies are required to disclose not only past payments, but also make disclosures or provisions for future obligations and contingent liabilities as long as they are likely to happen. Ghosn and Kelly's defense seems to be that disclosure wasn't strictly necessary here because they cleverly outsmarted the regulators by structuring the payments in a very ambiguous way where Nissan could, in theory, decide to not to pay Ghosn. Even if you believe that Ghosn and Kelly successfully outsmarted the regulator, what they did should clearly be made illegal. The shareholders have a right to know what's going on.

@Asiaman7

Kelly’s name appeared in only one part of Ghosn’s statements, in a proposal for post-retirement consultancy fees and a non-compete deal that would be paid in return for Ghosn agreeing to not work for a rival.

Both would have paid for services after retirement and did not have to be disclosed in Nissan Motor Co.’s annual securities reports, which are the focus of the trial.

Kelly was in charge of resolving the Ghosn compensation issue. Whether and where his name appears in the documents doesn't seem particularly relevant. This was his project. It's easy and tempting for companies to disguise current compensation as future consulting work or a non-compete agreement so you can't simply take their word for it. The courts will have to decide on the true substance of these transactions rather than their form.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Also, I have no idea why the U.S. State Department isn't standing up for Greg. If the Japanese wanted him arrested, they should have gone through the proper channels. Or perhaps they knew their charges would not hold up in an American court under extradition proceedings. In any case, the Japanese prosecutors have taken a big dump on the extradition treaty here. Why doesn't anyone see that??

9 ( +13 / -4 )

Unknown except to several top Nissan officials, Ghosn’s salary was slashed from about 2 billion yen ($20 million) to 1 billion yen ($10 million) in fiscal 2009, when the disclosure of individual executive pay became required in Japan.

So Ghosn had accepted this 50% salary slash despite had kept complaining even $20mil was not just enough without any backup plan? No one believes it.

“We were involved in trying to solve a business problem, which was: What actions do you take that are lawful to retain a very valuable executive who was underpaid?” Kelly added, referring to Ghosn.

Shouldn't have cut his salary to dodge the disclosure law but rather should have raised it and properly disclose and pay tax. Just as simple as that.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

I wish you could've found a more attractive photo for your top story.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@thelonius

Also, I have no idea why the U.S. State Department isn't standing up for Greg.

Probably because Greg Kelly was also indicted by the US government on similar charges. He agreed to a $100,000 settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

https://www.sec.gov/litigation/litreleases/2019/lr24606.htm

"SEC Charges Nissan, Former CEO, and Former Director with Fraudulently Concealing from Investors More Than $140 Million of Compensation and Retirement Benefits"

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Moral of the story: never ever EVER trust HR!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

The real villain is the Nissan board of directors. They are the ones that should be under house arrest and facing daily interrogation

11 ( +13 / -2 )

This is why Nissan will never be as good as Toyota, Honda, Suzuki or most of the Ethically correct Japanese companies.

Yeah... you may think these are ethically correct companies but the fact is, they're all cut with the same knife. Meaning, they're all the same. I know for a fact that Honda doesn't work ethically correct, neither does Sony. I have close friends working in these two companies, as well as in Nissan and the least they do is working ethically.

Specially when it comes to the haken-gaisha. Half of the staff working for Honda and Nissan, are haken sha-in and not working for Honda nor Nissan directly.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

JDoe…how do I up tick your comment to 1000?! Spot on mate!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Poor guy. (But why does the photo have to be so close?)

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Hari Nada and Hiroto Saikawa are the ones who should be on trial at the very least in a civil law suit by all shareholders of Nissans stock. Nada obviously intended to further his career within Nissan by providing the ammunition by which Saikawa and the Japanese executives could prevent Renault (who saved them) from being further dominated by Renault. This was purely about Japanese pride! They (as all spoilt children do) forgot they had been saved by Ghosn and Renault from bankruptcy and wanted to sabotage Renaults rightful fruits of its labour. The only people who have suffered from this are Ghosn, Kelly and the Nissan shareholders! Saikawa and Nada both secured deals which prevented them from being prosecuted and Saikawa simply allowed to resign albeit in complete and utter disgrace after he was guilty of the very thing he was pointing a finger at Ghosn and Kelly for…talk about duplicity and any lack of honour or self respect! The shareholders of Nissan should take both these snakes to civil court for the losses their stock as a direct result of their actions. Ghosn’s merger would have made them money!

7 ( +9 / -2 )

The SEC's complaint filed in district court charges Ghosn with violating the same anti-fraud provisions and Kelly with aiding and abetting Ghosn's and Nissan's violations. To settle the charges, Ghosn and Kelly agreed to be permanently enjoined from violating or aiding and abetting violations of the anti-fraud provisions. Ghosn also agreed to a $1 million civil penalty and a 10-year officer and director bar. Kelly agreed to a $100,000 penalty, a five-year officer and director bar and a five-year suspension from practicing or appearing before the Commission as an attorney. Nissan, Ghosn, and Kelly settled without admitting or denying the SEC's allegations and findings.

Ghosn and Kelly just thought Japan's authority was piece of cake to deal with, but never Challenged US.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

If you had been in Kelly’s shoes and could redo the whole ordeal, what would have done differently?

Thete is not one Japanese who would have blown the whistle.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The law takes a very distant second place to perception here. Japan's just held the Olympics and is going to hold the paralympics shortly. People will have eyes on the country, ergo Japan wants to look good.

My guess is that they'll bide their time until the media (international, obviously: the local media just report what they're told and follow what I imagine is the first thing they learn at journalism school in Japan: "ask questions, but don't ask questions, if you know what I mean") go home, then throw the harshest possible penalty they can at this guy.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

He was kept in solitary confinement for 35 days and interrogated daily.

Anyone need further evidence that the “justice” system here is a joke?

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Failure to make these required disclosures is the crime here.how,

it wasnt even decided how much it would be Ghosn hadnt even retired yet and no money was paid to him yet other than his yearly salary, so how do tax or even charge somebody for a crime when no money had even exchanged hands yet!?

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Kelly says he may have been singled out because he, like Ghosn, supported a merger for Nissan and Renault, to strengthen the alliance in a way he thought would make the companies more equal yet remain competitive.

Nada, former Nissan Chief Executive Hiroto Saikawa and several other Japanese executives opposed the merger, according to court testimony.

Japan can stomp its feet and act angrily anytime. French Renault still retains the majority power over decision-making in the alliance, and they are unlikely to backtrack from this power soon.

There is not a flying act that Japan can do to reverse the situation. Hell, Renault can just sell their shares to a Chinese state-owned enterprise to spite against Japanese oyajis.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

"A verdict is not expected until March"

Still baffled why until March, probably expect some evidence to show up ?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

The most interesting thing about this whole fiasco is that no one is actually talking about Hari Nada,

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/31/business/nissan-carlos-ghosn-hari-nada.html

8 ( +8 / -0 )

The Taylors did the right thing admitting guilt.

They will be released in 2 years.

A trial would have cost them 3 years even if they get acquitted.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

@wtfjapan

it wasnt even decided how much it would be Ghosn hadnt even retired yet and no money was paid to him yet other than his yearly salary, so how do tax or even charge somebody for a crime when no money had even exchanged hands yet!?

If you visit the SEC link I posted above and click 'SEC Complaint' on the right, you can read a detailed explanation of Nissan's reporting requirements. Companies cannot avoid disclosing tens of millions of dollars in expected payments by claiming that an extremely precise figure has yet to be agreed. They have to make a provision or at least include a note in the annual reports. The disclosure rules for publicly traded companies are notoriously strict and cumbersome to protect shareholders.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

it wasnt even decided how much it would be Ghosn hadnt even retired yet and no money was paid to him yet other than his yearly salary, so how do tax or even charge somebody for a crime when no money had even exchanged hands yet!?

From M3's link

From 2009 until his arrest in Tokyo in November 2018, Ghosn, with substantial assistance from Kelly and subordinates at Nissan, engaged in a scheme to conceal more than $90 million of compensation from public disclosure, while also taking steps to increase Ghosn's retirement allowance by more than $50 million. Each year, Ghosn fixed a total amount of compensation for himself, with a certain amount paid and disclosed and an additional amount that was unpaid and undisclosed. Ghosn and his subordinates, including Kelly, crafted various ways to structure payment of the undisclosed compensation after Ghosn's retirement, such as entering into secret contracts, backdating letters to grant Ghosn interests in Nissan's Long Term Incentive Plan, and changing the calculation of Ghosn's pension allowance to provide more than $50 million in additional benefits. Kelly and Ghosn's Nissan subordinates misled Nissan's CFO, and Nissan issued a misleading disclosure in connection with the increased pension allowance

Sure They did not admit but they did not deny either. Also...

At trial, they presented as evidence tables on Ghosn’s unpaid salary, kept meticulously by another Nissan official. Kelly says he didn’t know about the tables.

One can easily assume this slashed and unpaid 50% portion for 9 years ($90mil) has been at least guaranteed in whatever schemes Ghosn claimed he had not signed yet ( if it is true, he had not signed yet probably because he was greedy enough to further increase additional benefits on top of $50mil), and so can Japan's authorities, hence makes it legal obligation to disclose those at least as deferred payments, retirement benefits, whatever they want to call, in essence, fixed obligation payable in future.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

We all know what this is.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Whether guilty or not,being forced to wait three years for your case to come to court and be held in semi preventative custody is abhorrent.

Shame on Japan

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Prosecutor's and Nissan are holding him until they can get out of this and not look corrupt and foolish. They can't release him unless he confesses to something. If he is not convicted then Ghosn's trial will be seen as the BS that we all know it is. J-gov and Nissan will be embarrassed. This is how innocent people get convicted in Japan through a "war of attrition".

If neither are convicted they can both sue Nissan for some serious cash!

5 ( +6 / -1 )

This was purely about Japanese pride! Saikawa and Nada both secured deals which prevented them from being prosecuted and Saikawa simply allowed to resign albeit in complete and utter disgrace after he was guilty of the very thing he was pointing a finger at Ghosn and Kelly for…talk about duplicity and any lack of honour or self respect!

The penny has finally dropped for many who once upon a time might have been disposed to giving Japan the benefit of the doubt when it came to the justice system’s lack of impartiality and propensity for selective application of the rules. The Ghosn debacle has laid bare the depth of collusion between officialdom and those they nominally oversee, revealing the cronyism and reliance on legal arbitrariness that mocks Japan’s pretensions to being a rule based order where the welcome mat isn’t a trapdoor to be yanked open to protect the interests of J Inc.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@M3M3M3

....no way for current shareholders or prospective investors to discover this by reading the annual reports. Failure to make these required disclosures is the crime here.

It seems to me that this perspective conveniently absolves the international audit firm from responsibility -- but if you take this vewpoint further, it seems to me that a signed agreement between Nissan Board and Ghosn on future consultancy and fees would have been required by the audit firm to then make (at least) a note about the arrangement for disclosure on company financial statements -- yet as Ghosn immediately pointed out, there is no such signed document.

I think Ghosn was too clever by far, so clever that mere excellent managers and directors could not hope to retain him. They should simply have let him go, of course paying out huge sums in severance. There are limits to what can and should be disclosed even to shareholders and this is a great case study about that.

Nissan executives threw out the baby with the bathwater, damaging their own company irretrievably, both in credibility if their management prowess and value of their stock when they went to the Japanese prosecutor with this matter instead of handling it internally. I'm with Kelly. He should not be in court. All of this could have been resolved three years ago at a meeting of Nissan's BOD.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I'm no fan of Ghosn but the way Japan inc has so blatantly stitched up the foreigners while letting the locals off scott-free is not even comparable to how it would've been handled in China, as the locals would've been snared there. This is just blatant corporate corruption to bring Nissan back under Japanese control, it's a sham of a trial.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

@M3M3M3

Probably because Greg Kelly was also indicted by the US government on similar charges. He agreed to a $100,000 settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

> https://www.sec.gov/litigation/litreleases/2019/lr24606.htm

> "SEC Charges Nissan, Former CEO, and Former Director with Fraudulently Concealing from Investors More Than $140 Million of Compensation and Retirement Benefits"

Not only Kelly, Carlos Ghosn also got fine from SEC the problem is not only involved him, it's involved his former company. Please check again when that happened? It's during when he need to deal with Japanese justice system, he's not a freeman at that time. Even if he choose to build his case it's for SEC it won't be easy. Do you really expect him to deal with SEC in US while he has ongoing allegation in Japan with limited access? He can not access all necessary documents to appeal that anyway, since those documents kept by his former company. So paying fine it's easy to make it gone.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/23/business/sec-nissan-carlos-ghosn.html

1 ( +2 / -1 )

“Nissan and the prosecutors got together and concocted this into a criminal case.”

What they have done to innocent people is the only crime I see in this whole story.

Who is taking them to trial?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Is Mr. Kelly guilty or not I can’t tell because I am lacking lots of information to give a conclusion. However, the way how Nissan lured him to Japan was a rock bottom act. That is not a way how to treat anyone. It is like a street thug “justice”.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Let's see...Nissan "colluded" with the MOJ to commit "entrapment" against Kelly who, against his health and welfare, arrived in Japan in good faith granting his employer's request.

Nissan and MOJ...Nada and Saikawa are the felons you need to prosecute as well.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

@livvy

It seems to me that this perspective conveniently absolves the international audit firm from responsibility -- but if you take this vewpoint further, it seems to me that a signed agreement between Nissan Board and Ghosn on future consultancy and fees would have been required by the audit firm to then make (at least) a note about the arrangement for disclosure on company financial statements -- yet as Ghosn immediately pointed out, there is no such signed document.

Just to be clear, the auditors aren't responsible for making any notes or disclosures on the financial statements. That responsibility falls entirely on the company and the directors. If the directors knew about future payments to Ghosn relating to his work at Nissan (even if the amounts weren't entirely settled), they have a responsibility to make disclosures. Needless to say Ghosn and Kelly can't go free by blaming the auditors for failing to uncover their alleged fraud.

One of the well-known weaknesses of audits is the difficulty of uncovering fraud when it's being perpetrated at the highest levels of management. If the auditors question senior management about why Ghosn's salary was cut by 50% and management tells them that it's because Ghosn's salary was indeed cut by 50%, the auditors are entitled to rely on this as truth. The auditors have full access to Nissan's accounts but they are not private investigators that can rifle through all of Nissan's internal documents and emails looking for evidence of secret undisclosed agreements. That is far beyond the scope of any audit.

they went to the Japanese prosecutor with this matter instead of handling it internally. I'm with Kelly. He should not be in court. All of this could have been resolved three years ago at a meeting of Nissan's BOD.

If I beat my wife it becomes a matter for Japanese prosecutors no matter how much I insist that it could have been resolved internally as a family matter. Likewise, once a representative director signs off on the accounts of a public company and sends them to the JFSA, it ceases to be an internal BOD matter.

Even if we accept that the Nissan board was the most scheming, back-stabbing and disloyal board of directors ever assembled in the history of corporations, the relevant question is still whether Kelly did or did not violate disclosure laws in his position as a Nissan director.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

I'm no fan of Ghosn but the way Japan inc has so blatantly stitched up the foreigners while letting the locals off scott-free is not even comparable to how it would've been handled in China, as the locals would've been snared there.

Agreed.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Alan HarrisonToday 07:29 am JST

-

PieLoverToday 07:00 am JST

executive who was underpaid" my ass. Glad Nissan finally got rid of Ghosn and his cronies. Hopefully they'll nab Ghosn someday when he eventually flees Lebanon.

-

Not going to happen.

Not sure about that. Justice is slow everywhere, but working persistently over many years. The future is unclear, but Japanese justice, together with US-SEC and now with France also involved, was so far rather successful.

US-SEC collected more than 16.1 million USD in fines from Nissan, Ghosn and Kelly and and barred both, Ghosn and Kelly, for 10 respectively 5 years from US-related businesses.

Japan got Greg Kelly, now out on bail but he has no way to disappear as an US citizen, nowhere to go. They got the Taylors, father and son, now convicted criminals and in Japanese jails.

Japan got with the help of Turkey those pilots and other staff who helped with the escape of Ghosn, they arranged interpol red alerts for Ghosn and his wife. He is now considered to be an international fugitive worldwide.

About Ghosn, his bail of about 13 million USD is forfeited, and with legal issues also within Europe mainly France, he is hiding out in Lebanon, a rather impoverished country with a very unstable government. For how long is the question.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

After landing in Japan, he got in a van. The driver asked if he could pull over and make a call. Suddenly the van door opened, and several men rushed in, identifying themselves as prosecutors and a translator.

Kelly was taken to a detention center, handcuffed and searched, then led to an interrogation room, and questioned by prosecutors, initially without a lawyer present.

He was kept in solitary confinement for 35 days and interrogated daily.

Only in Japan can this be legal. Japan has a 99% conviction rate because of stunts like this. They mentally wear down the "criminal" to confess to a crime or have fake evidence stacked up against them...especially if they are foreigners.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Japan doesn't need any evidence. The forced confession is the main evidence in any trial. 98% of trials are based on confession.

Kelly didn't confess, that's an anomaly in the system.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

it seems to me that a signed agreement between Nissan Board and Ghosn on future consultancy and fees would have been required by the audit firm to then make (at least) a note about the arrangement for disclosure on company financial statements -- yet as Ghosn immediately pointed out, there is no such signed document.

I think Ghosn was too clever by far, so clever

Maybe yes, maybe not if he thought he could get away with underestimating Japan/US Law for as long as 9 years. After all BOD was his own Kingdom and he could have intentionally withheld signing by keeping it blank for this kind of scenario.

One of the well-known weaknesses of audits is the difficulty of uncovering fraud when it's being perpetrated at the highest levels of management. If the auditors question senior management about why Ghosn's salary was cut by 50% and management tells them that it's because Ghosn's salary was indeed cut by 50%, the auditors are entitled to rely on this as truth.

Yes. After all, Nissan was the client for the audit firm, who can change the firm as they like anytime.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

" I am not boasting but I've been offered by Fiat or GM with much higher remuneration" he said. " By rejecting such offers as CEO of Nissan, I have been calculating how much I have sacrificed compared to those CEOs of the world major automobile companies every year down to 1 yen"

The one who actually calculated such amount and reported to him every year was Toshiaki Ohnuma, ex-chief of secretarial dept., who cooperated with the investigation through plea bargaining.

He described it " It is remuneration I should have been entitled to "

https://www.asahi.com/articles/ASP5C73BFP5CUTIL031.html

This is Asahi just to remind you.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Don't mess with the Oyaji who two the line until they die!!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

He was sick, men. He just couldn't feel ruling the world as a King by making Nissan pay for the silly cost for the play at Palace of Versailles where he didn't invite Japanese directors cuz he thought they don't fit the picture.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

In the strictest sense, perhaps he did commit a crime but i highly doubt he did so knowingly. Companies hire boatloads of lawyers because often their actions could be misconstrued and the legalities are often a matter of legal interpretation.

Did Kelly personally benefit here in any way? No.

The case stinks. Simple as that.

Team Nissan wanted rid of Ghosn....Kelly was collateral damage. This poor patsy has been dealt a very poor hand.

Glad to see that a number of other news outlets are running basically the same story this week.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Yohan

Not sure about that. Justice is slow everywhere, but working persistently over many years. The future is unclear, but Japanese justice, together with US-SEC and now with France also involved, was so far rather successful.

Justice might slow but is it fair? After Carlos Ghosn scandal there are several scandal in Japan.

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2020/01/11/national/media-national/japan-post-holdings-drags-heels-insurance-sales-scandal/

Even this week there is another scandal

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2021/08/18/national/tsuruga-nuclear-data-manipulation-safety/

How many of execs being detain in all of those scandals? Why only Carlos Ghosn case is worth for them? If it was fair they should go after those people too.

US-SEC collected more than 16.1 million USD in fines from Nissan, Ghosn and Kelly and and barred both, Ghosn and Kelly, for 10 respectively 5 years from US-related businesses.

Can you check when this it happened? While Carlos Ghosn and Kelly in solitary confinement or busy with allegation brought by Japanese prosecutor. How handle SEC case? It was handled by his former company that have interest to make case to bring him down. Do you think Ghosn and Kelly have any access to any document if they interested to appeal SEC case, their former company just will let them access it?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Even this week there is another scandal

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2021/08/18/national/tsuruga-nuclear-data-manipulation-safety/

How many of execs being detain in all of those scandals? Why only Carlos Ghosn case is worth for them? If it was fair they should go after those people too.

Simple. They don't have 5 passports

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Protecting Ghosn, complaining about Japanese justice, worrying over your own tax-evasion scheme as expats, or just spitting your hate are all different in essence.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Mister Kelly, engaged in unethical and criminal behavior - trying to spin it any other way is simple nonsense. He engaged in fraud and embezzlement. Whether on behalf of Ghosn or not, it is a criminal offense.

There is no defense and why would anyone bother defending an upper level executive committing a crime as being the result of some weird prejudice because he is a whiteman in a foreign country and proclaiming his innocence based on such thin and absurd reasoning.

Kelly has been living a life of entitlement and privilege - mistaking such for a means to engage in conduct that is outside the pale and unquestionably illegal betrays a very insulated reality.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

@kennyGT

Simple. They don't have 5 passports

No, another simple answer because their nationalities is enough just to bow and those scandal will not being investigated.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/japan-post-insurance-unit-looking-into-thousands-of-policy-mistakes-11564573105

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Poor guy..he reall got hard done by.

Richard GallagherToday  07:15 pm JST

Mister Kelly, engaged in unethical and criminal behavior - trying to spin it any other way is simple nonsense. He engaged in fraud and embezzlement

Yeah, too bad he is not a Japanese manager...then a fake bow and mooshiwwke gozaimasen would be the end of it. Or not even that...just get a hushed golden parachute ala the snake Saikawa.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

No, another simple answer because their nationalities is enough just to bow and those scandal will not being investigated.

You maybe right and Japanese justice might have had guts to dump them all into the cells even after them all bowing GOMENNASAI except none of those cases 'Toshiba, Olympus, Tepco, Japan Post Insurance, etc turned out to be the greed of the king trying to take them all into his own pocket = embezzlement.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

might ---should

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Questions from someone for whom the GREED gene is dysfunctional (yes, this 'genetic flaw' really does exist in some) and whose idea of 'business' is "The Big Short": If Japan and its laws and business practices are SO corrupt as all of the bellyaching above would suggest, why would ANYONE want to come here and work and do business as, presumably, most of these dyspeptic voices have done, are doing? And are business practices REALLY so open and above board elsewhere, say, the U.S., Russia, the UK? As an observer, it's always been my impression that, in 'business', MONEY and HONESTY are mostly complete strangers to each other unless a gun of some sort is held to one's head...just askin'...

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

sakurasukiToday 06:28 pm JST

How handle SEC case? It was handled by his former company that have interest to make case to bring him down. Do you think Ghosn and Kelly have any access to any document if they interested to appeal SEC case, their former company just will let them access it?

Ghosn and Kelly (who is a US-lawyer anyway) are anything else but poor people and of course have lawyers in the States presenting and defending them.

The Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office was assisting SEC, but had no influence whatever on the outcoming of this case in USA.

Anyway, if you think, they are all so innocent you might complain about SEC and the justice system in USA in this case but not about justice in Japan.

Report can be found using this link

https://www.sec.gov/litigation/litreleases/2019/lr24606.htm

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Simple. They don't have 5 passports

BS...how many passports does Kelly have?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@yohan

Ghosn and Kelly (who is a US-lawyer anyway) are anything else but poor people and of course have lawyers in the States presenting and defending them.

By that time they no longer held any position in previous company so they just don't have access all necessary documents as they used to be. Beside that they were having serious allegation back in Japan.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Kafka’s Trial in 2021

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Curious that Hari Nada, Hiroto Saikawa, Toshiaki Ohnuma, and all the rest of "innocent" people in Nissan positioned between Ghosn and Kelly were not prosecuted.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Any opinion

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Effect of trying to hijack Nissan. Now pay the price. Stay in your lane.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

@@Kei Kurono

Effect of trying to hijack Nissan. Now pay the price. Stay in your lane.

The lane is that Renault owns Nissan!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Kelly was just trying to do what he thought was best for Nissan, Kitamura added.

This defence lawyer needs to go back to law school. The law is not meant to be "What is best for Nissan", but to balance the interests of all parties. In doing "What is best for Nissan", Kelly was indifferent to Nissan's legally mandated obligation to its stockholders to report its financial condition with accuracy. That's why he will be convicted.

M3M3M3 Aug. 20 07:19 am JST

Finally, an objective explanation! I agree.

Asiaman7Aug. 20 07:41 am JST

Both would have paid for services after retirement and did not have to be disclosed in Nissan Motor Co.’s annual securities reports, which are the focus of the trial.

I see that the line is indeed in the article. The article, however, is unclear WHO made this assessment. Kelly's defense lawyer? Ghosn? What's the reasoning they "did not have to be disclosed in Nissan's security report" in light of the clear legislative purpose of the law to provide accurate information to stockholders and potential stock buyers?

Also in the article:

However, University of Tokyo professor Wataru Tanaka, an expert on company law, testified during the trial as a witness for the defense that neglecting to include facts in a securities report, rather than making false statements, should be penalized by a fine, not jail time.

My comment would be this: Often, one can lie by omission just as effectively as by commission. I'll suggest that in legalsphere, the main differentiation between "neglecting to include" and "making false statements" is in the subjective aspect. Neglecting to include is a crime of negligence, of being insufficiently inattentive. Making false statements is a crime with intent. Since Kelly had intent ("helping Nissan"), his crime would be categorized at the latter.

@sakurasukiAug. 20 07:34 am JST

Ghosn confirmed about this in one of his interview, when he explained this alternative is more like amakudari (天下り) something that common in Japan.

"Like" is not "identical", apologist. The difference is that in amakudari, the guy is being paid by the receiving company. Ghosn's money is coming straight out of Nissan.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

@Kazuaki

Is Nissan actually paying Ghosn that retirement money?

If Nissan is not paying, there's no false statement in no security report.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

bokudaToday  12:40 pm JST

@Kazuaki

Is Nissan actually paying Ghosn that retirement money?

If Nissan is not paying, there's no false statement in no security report.

He was arrested and detained before he retired, wasn't he?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

marcelitoAug. 20  08:10 pm JST

Simple. They don't have 5 passports

BS...how many passports does Kelly have?

Metaphor if you know what that is. I think no countries wouldn't want to bother with extradition treaties.

Kelly is not a Japanese citizen. Ghosn escaped, and his wife helped it, exact scenarios Japanese authority was afraid to happen, which your ilk has blamed as inhumane treatments.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

bokudaToday 12:40 pm JST

@Kazuaki

Is Nissan actually paying Ghosn that retirement money?

If Nissan is not paying, there's no false statement in no security report.

He was arrested and detained before he retired, wasn't he?

I meant to ask, did he retire?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I meant to ask, did he retire?

That's a key question.

If the statement depends of external factors, like When or How will Ghosn retire.

Then is not a crime not to put it down on the security report.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

That's not a key question. A Key question is ......

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Nissan was behind the arrest."

Japan is behind his demise.

"Kelly wants boardroom, not criminal, trial" good luck with that hopeless wish.

August (yaksukuni  month) is a bad month to be in the mix in japan.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

What Nissan did to Carlos Ghosn and Greg Kelly is truely deplorable, especially how they lured Mr. Kelly from his home in the US. The Board of Directors and senior executives of Nissan should be in the dock instead. May they burn in hell for what they have done. The Japanese prosecutors are even more detestable and the whole Japanese legal system should be publicly condemned.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@Kazuaki Shimazaki

"Like" is not "identical", apologist. The difference is that in amakudari, the guy is being paid by the receiving company. Ghosn's money is coming straight out of Nissan.

You can not tell that, there's no planned detail decided and approved. That's why during investigation they really need confession from Ghosn and Kelly.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Alan HarrisonAug. 20  07:29 am JST

executive who was underpaid" my ass. Glad Nissan finally got rid of Ghosn and his cronies. Hopefully they'll nab Ghosn someday when he eventually flees Lebanon.

Not going to happen.

Unless Ghosn intends to live out the rest of his entire life in Lebanon, it is going to happen. May take a long timr but it will. This has nothing to do with guilt or innocence of the original charges. He's a bailjumper.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

On the current Japanese j-system the right thing to do is to jump bail.

Even in the UN are rooting for Ghosn.

Look at Greg Kelly; he lost 3 years of live, lots of money, and health.

For What?!

nobody can compensate his loses, even if he gets acquitted.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@kennyG

If you don't want people to jump bail. You could respect the "innocent until proven guilty" premise, stop forcing confessions, release all the evidence, allow lawyers on interrogations, and so much more.

Unless you have a real j-system I'll keep voicing up the j-system flaws.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

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