In 2018, Carlos Ghosn, the then chairman of the Nissan-Renault-Mitsubishi Alliance, was arrested and allegedly underestimated his income and other financial crimes.

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After more than a year in custody, former automotive executive Carlos Ghosn fled Japan in late 2019. He reappeared in Lebanon and stated that he was innocent, a fallen man set up by “dark forces”.

In his new book, “Broken Alliance: Inside the Rise and Fall of a Global Automotive Empire,” he gives his side of the story. Here is a list of the major players involved in the Ghosn saga.

Carlos Ghosny


Years before his arrest and escape from Japanese authorities, Ghosn was an executive at Renault in 1999, when the company formed the Renault-Nissan Alliance. Two years later he was named CEO of the Alliance and eventually president of both firms. He is credited with the financial turnaround of Nissan in the early 2000s.

In 2016, he also became chairman of Mitsubishi after the Alliance bought a significant stake in the automaker. In “Broken Coalition”, he argues that he was framed for financial wrongdoing by a conspiracy involving Nissan officials and the Japanese government.

Christina Murray

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As Nissan’s head of internal audit and compliance, American was instrumental in leading the internal investigation into the Ghosn case. In the days following his arrest, he gathered a list of about 80 Nissan employees who may have assisted Ghosn in his alleged misconduct and planned to investigate.

After that attempt was thwarted, she resigned in September 2019.

Carlos Tavares

Currently the CEO of Stelantis, Tavares has held various positions at Renault and Nissan under Ghosn. Both were known as “Big Carlos” and “Little Carlos”. Tavares was COO at Renault when he told Bloomberg News in 2013 that he was ready to lead a major automaker. He resigned from Renault shortly afterwards and headed the French OEM PSA Groupe for seven years before merging with Fiat-Chrysler under the new name Stelantis.

tone day

A senior vice president in charge of legal affairs at Nissan, Nada had struck a plea deal with Japanese prosecutors that exempted him from charges of some of the same financial crimes being leveled against Ghosn.

Nada later admitted that he was instrumental in hiding a large amount of Ghosn’s compensation from the coalition.

Maya Ghosni

zCarlos Ghosn’s youngest daughter. She and her boyfriend had traveled from America to Japan the day before Ghosn’s arrival. According to the book, they were at his father’s Tokyo apartment when they learned of his arrest. Shortly after, the police came with a search warrant and searched the apartment.

As of 2020 reports, Maya Ghosn is said to have met one of the men who drove Ghosn out of the country, though Ghosn denied that any of her children were involved. .

Jose Munozu

An executive at Nissan for 15 years, Munoz was chief performance officer when Ghosn was arrested. Something of a Ghosn Protectorate, Munoz left Japan shortly after his arrest.

The book “Broken Promise” describes how, after avoiding returning to Japan for weeks, Nissan allegedly offered him $12.8 million to cooperate with an internal investigation and turn over his electronics. He resigned the following January. He is currently the Global COO of Hyundai.

Thierry Bollor

Before being appointed CEO of Jaguar Land Rover, Bollore was an executive at Renault. He was chief operating officer upon Ghosn’s arrest, becoming temporary deputy CEO immediately afterwards. He was fired from the company in October 2019 after the board determined that he was too hostile to Nissan. At the time, he called it a “disturbing coup.”

Jean-Dominique Senard

Formerly the CEO of Michelin for seven years, the French businessman was named CEO of the Alliance in January 2019 following the ouster of Ghosn. A few months later, as the three companies recommended for the alliance, Senard was appointed its chairman. This is the position he holds to this day.

He is described in the book as “anti-ghastly” for this aristocratic parenting and management style.

Arun Bajaj

Bajaj was the head of human resources at Nissan at the time of Ghosn’s arrest. According to the Broken Alliance, NADA had put him on leave. He left the company in January 2019.

He is now the Chief Human Resources Officer at Canadian clothing company Gilden.

Hiroto Saikawa

A lifelong Nissan employee, Saikawa worked his way up the ladder until he was appointed CEO in 2017. Following Ghosn’s arrest, Nissan and its executives came under scrutiny amid claims of financial mismanagement, particularly with Ghosn’s salary. In September 2019, Saikawa admitted to receiving $440,000 in additional compensation, which he blamed for an accounting error. He resigned a few days later.

Arun Bajaj

Bajaj was the head of human resources at Nissan at the time of Ghosn’s arrest. According to the Broken Alliance, NADA had put him on leave. He left the company in January 2019.

He is now the Chief Human Resources Officer at Canadian clothing company Gilden.

Greg Kelly

A close associate of Ghosn, Kelly was a board member and human resources executive at Nissan. He was arrested in Tokyo the same day Hari Nada insisted that he be on site for a board meeting.

He was placed in solitary confinement for 35 days and charged with aiding in under-reporting of Ghosn’s compensation. Kelly is currently awaiting the next phase of his testing, which according to Ghosn is due in 2022.

Frederick Le Graves

As chief of staff to Renault’s chairman and CEO, Le Graves often traveled with Ghosn. She arrived in Tokyo with him the same day, but did not hear of the arrest until she was at his hotel. According to “Broken Alliance”, after receiving a call from Ghosn’s personal assistant, Fumiko, to go to Nissan headquarters with the phone and her computer on, she dashed to the airport and flew back to Europe.

Since March 2021, she has been the Executive Vice President of Public Affairs for France for STMicroelectronics, a multinational electronics and semiconductor company.

Laurent Pic

Pic was named France’s ambassador to Japan in June 2017. He was the first to visit Ghosn in prison. According to the book, Pic was also the first to inform Ghosn that the charges against him originated from Nissan.

Prior to this, he was Ambassador to the Netherlands.

hitoshi kawaguchi

During the Ghosn scandal, Kawaguchi was in charge of communications and government affairs at Nissan. The book describes him as close to key government officials, such as future Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga and higher-ups in the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. The book claims that he was “one of the key conspirators behind the downfall of Carlos Ghosn”.

He left the company in 2019 after a series of media leaks.

motonari otsuru

Otsuru was Ghosn’s first defense attorney, who was hired on the recommendation of the legal authorities at Renault. Formerly a prosecutor, Otsuru is described in the book as “incompetent” and the “worst choice” to lead Ghosn’s defense.

He was sacked from the team in February after the first court proceedings.

Yoshitaka Sekio

An officer within the Tokyo Prosecutor’s Office who led Ghosn’s arrest at Haneda Airport. He used to interrogate Ghosn daily before appearing in court for the first time.

Makoto Uchida

The current CEO of Nissan, Uchida, replaced Saikawa after resigning in 2019. He describes them in the book as someone with legitimacy issues given their background and relative newness to the company.

In 2016, he was named Corporate Vice President of the Alliance Purchasing Division. He was then the chairman of Dongfeng Motor Company and chairman of the management committee for China.

Junichiro Hironaka

After several missteps by Motonari Otsuru, Hironaka was hired to provide a more enthusiastic legal defense for Ghosn. A defense lawyer who won a rare victory in the Japanese judicial system (with its 99 percent conviction rate), Hironaka managed to secure Ghosn’s bail.

He was one of the first names suggested for the defense, but was passed over to Otsuru.

Khalid Jufali

Saudi businessman Khalid Jafali helped Nissan improve its business in the Middle East. Prosecutors allege the $14.7 million payment to Zuffali’s company is part of Ghosn’s financial mishandling.

In the book, Ghosn says that $14.7 million was paid over four years to Jaffali’s company for market research and other expenses. Those funds were approved by a group of employees, including members of the executive committee. Ghosn credits Jufali for increasing Nissan’s market share in the Middle East.