Former Nissan Motor Chairman Carlos Ghosn vowed to prove his innocence of alleged financial misdeeds but raised doubts about receiving a fair trial in Japan, in an interview with French television just before he was re-arrested on Thursday. It is part of another attempt by some individuals at Nissan to silence me by misleading the prosecutors.
He added: "Why arrest me except to try to break me? I will not be broken", he said. I am innocent of the groundless charges and. Anticipating such a move, Mr Ghosn prepared a video statement, which will be released at some point, his lawyer Hironaka said.
In their public filing, prosecutors said Ghosn arranged to have some $15 million transferred from a wholly-owned Nissan subsidiary to a bank of an overseas sales representative.
But Ghosn's lawyer, who will give a press conference later Thursday, told reporters that prosecutors were engaging in "hostage justice".
Mr Ghosn's sudden emergence on Twitter - which in 24 hours garnered nearly 43,000 followers before he was re-arrested on Thursday - has raised questions about whether the former Nissan boss violated the strict terms of his $9 million bail, which his lawyer has denied. He led the Nissan-Renault alliance and was credited with turning around the fortunes of both companies over several years.
A Paris-based spokeswoman for the Ghosn family denied any wrongdoing by Mr Ghosn and said reports of Oman payments, use of the planes and the startup are part of a smear campaign to make the former executive look greedy.
Renault said it had also "informed the French judicial authorities of potential issues concerning payments made to one of Renault's distributors in the Middle East".
Some of that money is believed to have been used to buy a luxury boat allegedly used by Ghosn and his family, according to a source familiar with the matter.
A former Renault and Nissan CEO facing a series of financial misconduct charges was arrested again last night, according to Japanese media.
But even if that resentment lay behind the initial charges, Ghosn's defense appears to have been complicated by the fact that Renault has now turned against him.
Ghosn was first arrested at a Tokyo airport on November 19.
"The suspect. was responsible for overseeing the whole of Nissan's operations and performing his duty loyally so as not to cause losses to Nissan, but he betrayed that duty in order to benefit himself", they said in a statement. In February, the company disclosed Ghosn may have improperly used a sponsorship deal to host his wedding party at the Palace of Versailles. A spokesman had said earlier its own investigation into Ghosn had uncovered "substantial evidence of blatantly unethical conduct".
Many commentators had linked the case against Ghosn to resentment within Nissan's Japanese senior management of his attempts for forge an even closer alliance between the French and Japanese carmakers.
"I am determined that the truth will come out", Ghosn said in his statement.
In January, a fresh charge claimed he understated his compensation for another three years and he was also indicted on a new, more serious charge of breach of trust.
"I am confident that if tried fairly, I will be vindicated", he said in the statement Thursday.