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Carlos Ghosn in Lebanon

Carlos Ghosn vows to defend his rights

Carlos Ghosn, the former Nissan Motor CEO, has vowed to defend his rights in the face of charges from Nissan and Renault after fleeing Japan to Lebanon nearly two years ago while awaiting his trial.

In an interview over Zoom from Beirut, Lebanon on Tuesday, Ghosn justified his escape from Japan, calling it a way of speaking out against the allegations levied against him.

“The whole thing was a joke but [Nissan] thought they would get away with it because I couldn’t speak,” Ghosn said.

“But they never thought that I would get out of Japan, and then I would be able to talk. And now the battle is completely different,” he added.

“That’s what makes me extremely motivated to continue this battle for as [long] as it takes to get back my rights from Nissan, and also from Renault.”

Ghosn said he wants to contribute to the change or the evolution of the “hostage justice system in Japan”.

He is charged with underreporting his pay and breach of trust. He is alleged of underreporting his compensation by conspiring with executives to pay himself 9.1 billion yen ($80 million) upon his retirement.

Ghosn has rejected any wrongdoing.

Lebanon has no extradition treaty with Japan. The country has also not replied to a wanted notice by Interpol at the request of Japanese investigators.

Ghosn said he is “happy” and “very busy,” with writing books, participating in films and TV shows and teaching management at universities.

A documentary regarding his arrest and escape, “Carlos Ghosn: The Last Flight,” started to stream in Japan on the U-Next broadcasting platform in September.

Ghosn said he is spending time with his “lawyers all over the planet” to defend his rights. He is aware that there is a legal battle with Nissan over the house in which he is presently residing in Lebanon. He was also ordered by a Dutch court to repay 5 million euros ($6.1 million) in wages to Nissan and Mitsubishi. The order is being appealed by Ghosn.

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