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Home / Business / Nissan, Ghosn thanked $ 16 million for failing to disclose salary

Nissan, Ghosn thanked $ 16 million for failing to disclose salary



(Bloomberg) – Nissan Motor Co. and Carlos Ghosn will pay a combined $ 16 million to settle a US regulator's claims that they failed to disclose more than $ 140 million in compensation that the automaker's ex-executive was intended to receive in retirement.

Nissan was fined $ 15 million, while Ghosn, 65, was fined $ 1 million, the Securities and Exchange Commission said in a statement Monday. The allegations stem from a decision that allegedly gave Ghosn broad authority over pay decisions: As of 2004, the board delegated power to fix compensation for executives and directors, including his own.

That led to Ghosn, with significant assistance from subordinates, excluding more than $ 90 million in compensation from Nissan's public disclosures to investors, the SEC said. Ghosn also took steps to increase pension benefits by $ 50 million, according to the regulator.

The SEC also reached a settlement with former Nissan CEO Greg Kelly, who agreed to pay a $ 100,000 fine over allegations that he helped Ghosn conceal his salary. Ghosn was banned from serving as director or officer of a public company for 10 years, while Kelly agreed to a five-year ban. Nissan, Ghosn and Kelly, 63, solved all the cases without admitting or denying wrongdoing.

Nissan said in a statement that it cooperated fully with the SEC and has "promptly implemented remedial actions to prevent recurrence."

Attorneys for Ghosn and Kelly said the decision to settle with the SEC should have no bearing on separate Japanese cases against their clients.

"Greg is a guy with limited resources," said James Wareham, a Kelly lawyer for Washington. He said his client showed up so he could concentrate on the case he is facing in Japan.

(Adds comments from Nissan and Ghosn from the fifth paragraph.)

To contact the reporters about this story: Matt Robinson in New York at mrobinson55@bloomberg.net; Chester Dawson in Southfield at cdawson54@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Jesse Westbrook at jwestbrook1@bloomberg.net, Gregory Mott

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