Former Nissan Motors Executive, Greg Kelly, Pleads Not Guilty and Denies Charges of Criminal Conspiracy

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Background 

Greg Kelly and Carlos Ghosn were charged with hiding income and criminal conspiracy. This is alleged to have been done for a decade. The duo was arrested in Japan in 2018. Kelly has been on bail since 2018 while Ghosn made a dramatic escape from Japan. He is said to have been smuggled out of Japan in a Speaker case in a private jet. He fled the country while he denied all charges and was on a wait for his trial to commence. The trial has begun and Greg Kelly pled not guilty for the charges against him. 

Arguments 

The prosecutors argued that Nissan had introduced new executive pay disclosure rules in 2010. Mr Kelly and other executives helped Ghosn to reduce the amount considerably. There were many ways that Kelly did this and a few were selling of the discounted real estate and loans which need not be repaid. The defence team for Mr Kelly stated that the involvement of Mr Kelly was merely partial, contributory and not direct. The trial will include many prominent pieces of evidence and testimonies from important names in the company. Hiroto Saikawa will also be giving his testimony and a glimpse of the working of the company as an insider.

Japanese Judicial Practices

The trial brings into light the judicial practices in Japan including criticism from the international community. The conviction rate in Japan taking into consideration decades of data comes up to around 99%. The basic right of detainees to ask for an attorney when being investigated is not exercised in Japan. Ghosn also expressed his flight from the country to be reasoned by his fear of not receiving a fair trial in Japan. 

Implications

The trial of Mr Kelly can take about a year for the final decision. The charges could be a decade in prison and a fine of around ten million yen ($94330).


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