Ex-Nissan Chairman Carlos Ghosn Released on Bail After Spending 108 Days in Prison

Ghosn exchanged his executive suits for the outfit of a common city worker to conceal his identity when leaving prison.

Carlos Ghosn, Renault CEO Gives A Press Conference In Paris
Christophe Morin/IP3—Getty Images

Former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn has been released on bail after spending 108 days in a Tokyo prison. Ghosn, alongside his aide Greg Kelly, has been charged with several allegations surrounding financial misconduct which resulted in his arrest last November.

Ghosn was required to post a bail of $9 million ($1 billion yen), which is a fraction of the $82 million the former executive was accused of mishandling while at Nissan Motor Company. When released, Ghosn was dressed in worker's clothes, sporting a light blue cap and face mask which helped to conceal his identity.

As part of his bail agreement, the ex-chairman will be required to stay in Japan and be "closely monitored" with surveillance cameras, according to CNN. Additionally, Ghosn may not have contact with overseas entities.

Ghosn and his family maintain their position on his innocence, stating that the accusations are without merit and tearing into the Japanese justice system for holding Ghosn in "dehumanizing" conditions.

Japanese prosecutors unsuccessfully protested Ghosn's release on bail and rejected both claims from the family, stating that Ghosn, like all inmates, was treated fairly.

According to internal investigations, Nissan found “substantial and convincing evidence of misconduct” surrounding Ghosn. Japanese prosecutors allege that ex-chairman underreported his total compensation from Nissan by $82 million over the span of nearly nine years.

While employed, the executive was reportedly able to hide the guaranteed funds by instructing his aide, Greg Kelly, to provide upper management with memos stating his compensation. It was later alleged that Ghosn also passed off personal investment losses to the company and purchased houses and condos around the world, hiding the funds by funneling the transactions through a complex chain of Nissan-established companies in countries known for their tax haven status

Since his initial arrest, Ghosn has been ousted by both Nissan and Mitsubishi as board chairman. The remaining alliance partner, Renault, still lists Ghosn as its CEO and chairman.

If convicted, Ghosn could face heavy fines and up to 15 years in prison.