Carlos Ghosn has been sacked as chairman of Mitsubishi Motors, a week after the disgraced auto tycoon was arrested over allegations that he underreported his income by millions of dollars – a crime that carries a possible 10-year prison sentence.
Seven of the eight members of the board of Mitsubishi, part of an industry alliance created by Ghosn that also includes Renault, held an extraordinary meeting on Monday to decide his fate, days after Nissan sacked him as chairman.
Ghosn, who allegedly also abused company assets for personal use, remains in detention in Tokyo but has reportedly denied the allegations, according to Japanese media.
Mitsubishi said its chief executive, Osamu Masuko, will become temporary chairman.
Ghosn, 64, was once hailed as a visionary after saving Nissan from bankruptcy in 1990s by spearheading its alliance with Renault. Nissan then took a 34% stake in Mitsubishi, which employs more than 30,000 people, in 2016.
The group grew to be the world’s top-selling car company, with some 10.6m vehicles rolling off the production line last year. It employs about 450,000 people worldwide.
While Nissan vowed to retain its ties to Renault, reports in Japan claimed Nissan executives were disturbed by Ghosn’s plans to turn the alliance into a full-blown merger.