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卡洛斯·戈恩:因为“阴谋和背叛”而被捕的日产高管

彭博社 2019年02月02日

这位身陷囹圄的汽车行业高管表示,自己之所以因为金融犯罪而被捕,源于日产高管针对他的“阴谋”。

位于法国北部莫伯日雷诺工厂的卡洛斯·戈恩,2018年11月8日。图片来源:Ludovic Marin—AFP/Getty Images

身陷囹圄的汽车行业高管卡洛斯·戈恩表示,自己之所以因为金融犯罪而被捕,源于日产高管针对他的“阴谋”,其目的是阻止这家日本汽车制造商与雷诺进行进一步的整合。

自2018年11月被捕之后,戈恩在他的首次公开采访中向日本《日经新闻》透露,自己曾经计划将日产、雷诺和第三方合作伙伴三菱汽车公司整合在一起。他表示,自己在去年9月与日产首席执行官西川广人讨论过拟议的合并。

戈恩自去年11月19日在东京被捕之后一直在监牢中。他被指控瞒报自己在日产的收入,高达数千万美元,以及将个人交易损失临时转嫁给公司。

戈恩对《日经新闻》说,这些指控均源于“阴谋和背叛”。他一再否认自己存在任何不当行为,并且指出有人为了将其“赶出”公司而“歪曲事实”。

《日经新闻》称其在监狱对戈恩进行了约20分钟的采访。在采访公布数分钟之后,日产发言人进行了回应,称西川广人此前拒绝了合并的提议。

公司在一份声明中指出:“日产的调查揭示了大量有说服力的行为不当证据。”

美国证券交易委员会的调查

日本第二大汽车制造商这次搬起的石头也砸了自己的脚,它在日本被指控误报戈恩的薪酬,而且还面临美国证券交易委员会的调查。多名知情人士称,这家美国金融监管机构正在调查日产的高管薪酬披露是否准确,以及这家公司对于预防不当薪酬是否制定了充足的控制举措。

日产称,公司将全力配合调查。作为戈恩之前的门徒,西川广人表示他打算在几个月之后辞职,而在这之前,他将对公司羸弱的治理进行改革。他称治理的不力削弱了日产的实力。

在被捕之前,戈恩意欲推动日产与雷诺进一步整合,包括去年彭博社报道的可能的合并,但日产对此表示拒绝,除非日产在合并后能够掌握更多领域的话语权。

尽管这两家公司都一再表示双方十分重视这一合作关系,但日产长期以来认为法方在联盟中的话语权过大,因此对这一关系并不是很满意。雷诺持有日产43%的权益,拥有投票权,而日产则持有雷诺15%无投票权权益,同时法国政府是雷诺最有权势的股东。

联盟调查

知情人士称,雷诺-日产联盟的高管本周将在阿姆斯特丹会面,而负责管理两家合作关系的公司便坐落于该市。知情人士还表示,这家公司聘请了法国审计师马扎斯来调查联盟之内可能存在的不当行为。

在上周日产免去戈恩董事长职务之后,戈恩也辞去了法国头号汽车制造商雷诺的董事长兼首席执行官职务。尽管雷诺上周任命米其林首席执行官让-多米尼克·瑟纳德担任其董事长,但日产还未公布戈恩的替代人选。

日本法院再次拒绝了戈恩的保释要求,因为检察官认为他有潜逃风险。他的律师称,在6个月后可能进行的庭审之前,戈恩可能一直都得呆在监狱中。在采访中,戈恩表示他不会潜逃,而且他打算直面这些指控。

在被问及健康状况时,他说身体“还行”。

令日产雪上加霜的是,公司出现了10年以来首个全年业绩下滑。周三,这家总部位于日本横滨的公司表示,日产去年的全球汽车交付量下滑了2.8%,降至570万辆,而公司也即将在2月12日宣布截至去年12月的季度收益。(财富中文网)

译者:冯丰

审校:夏林

Fallen auto titan Carlos Ghosn said his arrest for alleged financial crimes was the result of a “plot” against him by Nissan Motor Co. executives trying to prevent the Japanese carmaker’s deeper integration with Renault SA.

There was a plan to combine Nissan with Renault and third partner Mitsubishi Motors Corp., Ghosn told Japan’s Nikkei newspaper in his first published interview since being arrested in November 2018. The proposed merger was discussed with Nissan Chief Executive Officer Hiroto Saikawa in September, he said.

Ghosn has been in custody since his Nov. 19 arrest in Tokyo. He was indicted for allegedly understating his income at Nissan by tens of millions of dollars and temporarily transferring personal trading losses to the carmaker.

The allegations against him were the result of “plot and treason,” Ghosn told Nikkei. He repeated his denials of any wrongdoing and said people “distorted reality” for the purpose of “getting rid” of him.

Nikkei said it interviewed Ghosn for about 20 minutes at the jail. In a response issued minutes after the interview’s publication, a Nissan spokesman said Saikawa previously refuted the notion of a coup.

“Nissan’s investigation uncovered substantial and convincing evidence of misconduct,” the company said in a statement.

SEC Investigation

Japan’s second-biggest automaker is grappling with its own legal fallout from the scandal. It was indicted in Japan for misreporting Ghosn’s pay, and it also faces an investigation by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The U.S. financial regulator is examining whether Nissan’s executive-pay disclosures were accurate and whether the carmaker had adequate controls to prevent improper payments, several people familiar with the matter said.

Nissan said it’s cooperating fully with the inquiry. And Saikawa, a former protege of Ghosn who led the campaign against his ex-boss, said he intends to step down in coming months after reforming the poor governance he says weakened the Japanese carmaker.

Ghosn pushed for closer integration between Nissan and Renault before his arrest, including a possible merger that Bloomberg reported last year, but Nissan resisted a combination unless it would gain clout in more areas.

While both companies repeatedly say they are committed to the partnership, Nissan has long been unhappy about what it considers to be an outsized French role in the alliance. Renault owns about 43 percent of Nissan with voting rights, while Nissan has a 15 percent non-voting stake in Renault. The French government is the most powerful shareholder in Renault.

Alliance Probe

Renault-Nissan alliance executives will meet this week in Amsterdam, where the company that manages the carmakers’ partnership is based, people familiar with the matter said. The automakers hired the French auditor Mazars to investigate possible wrongdoing within their alliance, people with knowledge of the matter said this week.

Ghosn stepped down as chairman and CEO of Renault, France’s largest carmaker, last week after Nissan stripped him of his role as chairman. While Renault named Michelin CEO Jean-Dominique Senard as its chairman last week, Nissan has yet to name a replacement for Ghosn.

Japanese courts repeatedly denied Ghosn’s requests for bail after prosecutors argued he’s a flight risk, and his lawyers say he could stay in custody until a trial that may be six months away. In the interview, Ghosn said he isn’t a flight risk, and he intends to defend himself against the charges.

When asked about his health, he said he was “doing fine.”

Adding to the company’s challenges, Nissan reported its first full-year slump in auto sales in almost a decade. Global deliveries fell 2.8 percent last year to 5.7 million vehicles, the Yokohama, Japan-based carmaker said Wednesday. Nissan is due to announce earnings for the quarter ended December on Feb. 12.

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