• Kyodo

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The securities watchdog on Tuesday recommended that Nissan Motor Co. be fined ¥2.4 billion ($22 million) over allegations that it underreported former Chairman Carlos Ghosn’s remuneration for years, sources said.

The recommendation by the Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission, which has also filed a criminal complaint against Nissan and Ghosn over the alleged misreporting, was made to the Financial Services Agency on Tuesday.

The watchdog accused Nissan of violating the financial instruments law by underreporting Ghosn’s pay package by around ¥9.1 billion in the eight years through March 2018 in the company’s securities reports presented to regulators.

The fine targets the underreported period of four years through March 2018 for which the statute of limitations has not expired.

Initially, the penalty for Nissan was expected to reach ¥4 billion based on the amount of pay left out of submitted documents, but the automaker has asked the watchdog for a reduction in the fine by reporting the matter before an investigation got fully underway. The SESC accepted Nissan’s request, sources said.

Tokyo prosecutors have indicted Nissan on the charge. The company corrected its securities reports in May, including executive remuneration, from fiscal 2005 to fiscal 2017.

It is rare for the SESC to file both a criminal complaint and recommend a fine to the Financial Services Agency over alleged financial statement falsification.

There was one such case in 2012 when a fine was recommended and a criminal complaint was filed against Olympus Corp., which had admitted to hiding massive investment losses.

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