[Temple ICAS Event] Renault-Nissan-Ghosn: Japanese justice in comparative perspective

Robert  Dujarric's picture
March 25, 2019
Subject Fields: 
Japanese History / Studies, Law and Legal History, Social History / Studies

Date: Monday, March 25, 2019
Time: 7:00 - 9:00 p.m. (doors open at 7:00 p.m.)
Venue:Temple University, Japan Campus, Azabu Hall, 1F Parliament


  • Stephen Givens, Professor in the Law Faculty of Sophia University
  • David Litt, Professor at Keio Law School
  • Hiroki Sasakura, Professor of Criminal Procedure and Evidence at Keio Law School
  • Akiko Yamakawa, Partner, Vanguard Tokyo Law firm
  • Yoichiro Yamakawa, Partner, Koga & Partners

Moderator: Robert Dujarric, Director of ICAS
Admission:Free. Open to the public.
* Registration is encouraged, but not required.


Since Carlos Ghosn’s arrest and extended pre-trial detention, the Japanese legal system, and in particular the criminal justice system, has received heightened international scrutiny and criticism. In the view of many foreign commentators, Ghosn’s treatment by the prosecutors breaches basic constitutional protections and criminal justice norms taken for granted in North America and Europe.

A panel of Japanese and foreign lawyers and scholars will explore the complex legal issues raised not only by the criminal charges against Ghosn but the ongoing struggle for control of Nissan between its 43% shareholder, Renault, and Nissan’s Japanese management. The Japanese members of the panel will help clarify these issues under Japanese law, while the foreign participants explain how the same issues would be handled under the law of their own jurisdictions.

The central legal issues include:

  •     Japan’s pre-trial criminal detention system: Does it meet international standards?
  •     The criminal charges against Carlos Ghosn: Is this selective prosecution? Would prosecutors bring these charges outside Japan?
  •     The struggle for control over Nissan: What is the connections between the criminal charges against Ghosn and Nissan’s past and future corporate governance?  


Stephen Givens is a professor in the Law Faculty of Sophia University and a practicing corporate lawyer. He is a graduate of Harvard Law School.

David Litt is a professor at Keio Law School. He is a graduate of Yale University and the University of Chicago Law School. He was a law clerk to Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy.

Hiroki Sasakura is a professor of Criminal Procedure and Evidence at Keio Law School. Professor Sasakura is a graduate of Tokyo University Law Faculty and studied at Harvard Law School.

Akiko Yamakawa is a partner at Vanguard Tokyo Law firm and is an experienced commercial litigator. She is a graduate of Tokyo University Law Faculty and received an LL.M degree from Harvard Law School.

Yoichiro Yamakawa is a partner at Koga & Partners. He is an experienced litigator and expert on media law. He is a graduate of Tokyo University Law Faculty and the University of Michigan Law School.

*The panelists will be speaking in their private capacity, not on behalf of their firms and/or institutions to which they are affiliated. The session will be off-the-record (Chatham House Rules).

Contact Info: 
Robert Dujarric
Director, Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies
Temple University Japan Campus
Contact Email: