TOKYO: Nissan installed a camera surveillance system at the home of former executive Ashwani Gupta so the automaker’s internal security team could monitor him, according to the preliminary findings of an investigation into the surveillance, two people with knowledge of the report said.
Nissan has been investigating a claim that Chief Executive Makoto Uchida carried out surveillance of the carmaker’s second- in-command to acquire leverage to remove him from the company because of Gupta’s opposition to some terms in a new partnership deal with Renault, Reuters reported on Saturday.
Nissan directors were briefed on the preliminary findings of the investigation into the surveillance claim by US law firm Davis Polk & Wardwell at a board meeting on June 20 at the company’s Yokohama headquarters, the two people said.
The preliminary report said Nissan had installed two sets of security cameras at the entrance to Gupta’s house in Tokyo’s Shibuya ward, the people said.
It said the first system was for use by a private security firm while the second system was set up for access by Nissan’s internal security team to monitor Gupta, the two people said.
The report from the US law firm did not offer a finding on whether the use of cameras by Nissan to monitor Gupta was illegal, nor did it detail whether Gupta was made aware of the monitoring, the two people said.
Reuters was unable to determine when the cameras were installed or the name of the private security company.
Uchida and Gupta, who was still a Nissan director and chief operating officer on June 20, were recused from the board meeting. A final report on the investigation, which started in late May at the request of Nissan’s independent directors, was expected as soon as July, the two people said.
Nissan said it could not comment on ongoing investigations and declined to make the executives available for comment. Davis Polk did not respond to a request for comment.