PARIS — Fashion designer Rabih Kayrouz has pleaded with French President Emmanuel Macron to request the liberation of Carlos Ghosn, the chief executive officer of Renault and chairman of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, who was arrested in Tokyo on Nov. 19 following accusations of tax evasion.
Ghosn, 64, is being held at a detention center in Kosuge until Nov. 30 while the Japanese justice system examines the claims made against him.
“A week ago we all discovered that this man has been arrested in a very brutal and unjust way,” Kayrouz wrote on Instagram on Sunday evening.
“Why? What did he do? After saving a company (and) a country is this a way to thank him? Is this the way to honor a genius? A hard-working man? A husband? A friend?” he added.
The designer, who dressed Ghosn’s wife Carole Nahas at the couple’s wedding held at the Chateau de Versailles in 2016, appealed to Macron to “save your citizen, the head of one of the most prestigious company [sic].” He ended his post with the hashtag #freecarlosghosn.
Kayrouz was not immediately available for additional comment.
On Nov. 22, Nissan said Ghosn no longer held the position of chairman of that company. Mitsubishi Motors followed suit on Monday.
On Nov. 21, Renault called in Thierry Bolloré and Philippe Lagayette as temporary replacements for Ghosn, sparking speculation about his possible exit from the company. The French government owns 15 percent of Renault.
Speaking on French television channel BFM TV on Sunday, French finance minister Bruno Le Maire said the state had no elements of proof regarding the accusations against Ghosn. “As long as we don’t have tangible charges, there is no reason to question his presumption of innocence,” he said.