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What the arrest of Nissan's chairman could mean for future of the Japanese automaker

nissan suv
An undated stock photo of a Nissan vehicle.

Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn had been arrested. He's been accused of financial misconduct after internal investigations found he had underreported his salary and used company assets for personal benefit. 

BBC journalist Leisha Santorelli joined Stateside to discuss what his arrest could mean for the future of the Japanese automaker.

Santorelli noted that the news was surprising to many, as evidenced by changes on the share market. Renault, which was trading at the time the news was annouced, plunged by as much as 15 percent. The allegations against Ghosn say that he underreported his salary, approximately $89 million in USD, by about half. He is also accused of personal use of company assets, and, according to Nissan, significant acts of financial misconduct. No further details were given. 

"Nissan says this misconduct has been going on for a number of years," Santorelli said. "But they didn't really give much detail beyond that because these remain allegations, and in Japan, an arrest does not mean Mr. Ghosn is guilty. So, we'd have to go through the judicial process to see more facts emerge."

Along with Ghosn, another top executive was also arrested. American Greg Kelly, a 62-year-old executive who started in human resources at Nissan and "rose through the ranks." According to trade publications, he was the first American board member at Nissan. 

Listen to the interview above to learn more about what these accusations mean for the company and more. 

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