France issues international arrest warrant for Carlos Ghosn
Nanterre, Apr 22: French prosecutors have issued an international arrest warrant against Carlos Ghosn, according to multiple French media reports.
Ghosn, the former chief of Nissan and the head of an alliance between Renault, Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors, is wanted over suspicious payments.
Prosecutors said they had issued a warrant over €15 million ($16.2 million) in transactions between the Renault-Nissan alliance he headed and an Omani company, Suhail Bahwan Automobiles (SBA).
Prosecutors say the transfers allowed Ghosn to funnel millions of dollars of Renault funds for his own personal use, including the purchase of a 120-foot yacht.
In response to the reports, Ghosn's spokesperson said in a statement to Reuters news agency: "This is surprising, Ghosn has always co-operated with French authorities."
The Wall Street Journal earlier reported that prosecutors had also issued arrest warrants for four other people allegedly linked to the auto dealer in Oman.
Who is Carlos Ghosn?
Ghosn made international headlines when he fled Japan while facing trial for financial wrongdoing. He was stashed into a case for audio equipment and smuggled out on a private jet.
The 68-year-old — a citizen of France, Lebanon and Brazil — now lives in Lebanon, which does not extradite its own citizens.
He claims he fled Japan because he would not face a fair trial, in a country where prosecutors win nearly 99% of their cases.
He initially welcomed a French investigation into his case, saying it would clear his name.