Wednesday 12 February 2020 10:02 am

Nissan to file £70m lawsuit against fugitive ex-chief Carlos Ghosn

Nissan wants 10bn yen (£70m) in damages from its former boss Carlos Ghosn in relation to his alleged financial misconduct, Reuters has reported.

The civil lawsuit filed to seek the sum follows Ghosn’s dramatic escape from Japan to Lebanon last December.

Read more: Carlos Ghosn press conference: Ghosn accuses Nissan and Japan of collusion

The allegations the former Nissan chair faces, all of which he denies, include understating his salary and alleged misuse of company funds.

Nissan said it expects the amount it will be asked to pay in damages to “increase in future” over Ghosn’s alleged misconduct.

As a result it plans “to recover a significant part of the monetary damages inflicted on the company by its former chairman”.

The company may also separately sue for “groundless and defamatory” remarks it accused Ghosn of making last year at a news conference in Beirut following his flight out of Japan.

Read more: Carlos Ghosn lawyers hit out at Nissan’s spending accusations

Ghosn said at the time: “My unimaginable ordeal is the result of a handful of unscrupulous, vindictive individuals.” He named Nissan officials and members of the Japanese government.

Nissan, alongside many other leading car manufacturers, is battling the impact of the coronavirus on its international supply chain.

Earlier this week, the company confirmed it was suspending production at one of its main plants due to difficulty sourcing parts from China.

Nissan has accused Ghosn of using company money to fund lavish events like a party at the Palace of Versailles and holidays to Rio de Janeiro carnivals.

Read more: Coronavirus hits production at Nissan’s Japanese plants

Ghosn, who has an estimated net worth of $120m, has denied charges of financial wrongdoing in Japan, whose legal system has a 99 per cent conviction rate.

The scandal has cast major doubts over the Nissan and Renault alliance. Both companies have said they are committed to working together.