Former Renault-Nissan Alliance chairman Carlos Ghosn could face charges in France, as the country’s prosecutor's office in the Paris suburb of Nanterre has stepped up its investigation into two parties that the disgraced auto mogul had thrown in Versailles several years ago, now handing the probe over to a magistrate, AFP reported.
One of the parties in the royal residence back in 2014 was officially devoted to the alliance between Nissan and Renault, but in reality, according to reports, was a celebration of Ghosn’s 60th Birthday as it was mainly attended by the businessman’s friends and family. In October 2016, Ghosn also returned to Versailles to celebrate the wedding with his now-wife Caroline in a lavish Marie Antoinette-themed ceremony.
The businessman has been accused of “wrongly” obtaining the use of the royal premises by being waived of the usual 50,000-euro rental fee in exchange for a sponsorship deal between Renault and Versailles, which is owned by the state. Earlier France’s tax authorities had also launched an investigation into Renault’s suspicious transactions with some other companies and states, including Oman.
Ghosn, who has stepped down as Nissan’s CEO in 2017 and as chairman and CEO of Renault in 2019, was first arrested in Japan in November 2018.
After spending 130 days in detention in Japan and several bail requests, the former auto-titan was placed under strict house arrest. However, he managed to secretly escape to Lebanon via Istanbul in December 2019.