Anticipate actions to be taken after disclosure of the reason for detention
JANUARY 8, 2019
Today, a procedure was held to disclose the reason for Mr. Ghosn’s detention. During this procedure, Mr. Ghosn declared that he was innocent. This may lead to a full-scale battle in court.
On January 11, the day his detention period expires, I expect that Mr. Ghosn will be indicted for aggravated breach of trust and violation of the Financial Instruments and Exchange Act (indictment on an additional charge) and by this, investigations will presumably be completed.
The stage of this legal battle will shift to the court, but Mr. Ghosn’s bail may not be admitted for the time being. In today’s procedure, Mr. Ghosn declared that he was innocent and showed his intention to fight, therefore, I believe that even if the defense counsel repeatedly requests bail of Mr. Ghosn, the Tokyo District Court will reject such requests each time on the grounds that there is risk of his concealing or destroying evidence.
Last year, when the extension of his detention for violation of the Financial Instruments and Exchange Act was rejected, there was a moment when I thought that bail may be granted. However, the circumstances are different this time. Aggravated breach of trust is a far more serious crime than violation of the Financial Instruments and Exchange Act.
Before formal court procedures starts, pretrial conference procedures will most likely be conducted and arrangement of issues and evidence will be conducted for several months. Therefore, the formal trial will probably start around autumn.
So, how long will Mr. Ghosn be detained?
My guess is that Mr. Ghosn’s detention will probably continue after autumn. To put it plainly, the detention will continue until the prosecution’s claim is filed in court, in other words, until all examinations of witnesses of the prosecution are over. Therefore, bail may be made, at the earliest, in the end of 2019.
In Japan, when you try to fight facts, this is what happens. It is called “hostage justice” and is an evil habit of the prosecution and the court.
The world is in for another surprise.
(Tsutomu Nakamura, Founding Partner)