Renault has apologised to three executives it sacked over spying allegations after French prosecutors found no evidence against them.
The three were sacked in January amid claims they were involved in passing Renault secrets to a third party.
Police were investigating alleged Swiss bank accounts linked to the executives.
The affair has become an embarrassment for Renault, which now believes it may have been hoaxed into thinking the executives had leaked information. Renault fell victim to the cheating plot by a former intelligence agent now working for the carmaker, who fabricated the story of the three executives selling “company secrets” in a high-profile electric vehicle program to some foreign countries, and demanded 924,000 euros (1.29 million U.S. dollars) from Renault for “further information,” local daily newspaper Le Figaro quoted a Paris prosecutor as saying.
Following a board meeting on Monday, Renault issued a statement saying the three men had been “wrongly accused”.
Carlos Ghosn, chief executive of Renault and Nissan, said he would meet the executives as soon as possible and “make reparations” after it was reported that the source of spying allegations may have been a fraudster.
The case against the men – who always vigorously denied wrong-doing – began to unravel last week with a string of French media reports that the police had found no evidence.