Founder of embattled electric truck startup Nikola charged with fraud
  • Trevor Milton was indicted on fraud costs on Thursday, the US Division of Justice stated.
  • His EV startup, Nikola, had been accused of deceptive merchants by a short-seller. 
  • Milton resigned from Nikola in September because the corporate’s plans unraveled. 

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Trevor Milton, the founder of electric truck maker Nikola, has been indicted on costs of constructing inaccurate and deceptive statements to merchants, the US Division of Justice stated on Thursday.

The indictment stated that, from November 2019 to September 2020, Milton schemed to defraud merchants into procuring Nikola shares thru statements about the corporate’s product and abilities pattern.

Nikola failed to straight answer to requests for comment.

Read extra: Nikola founder Trevor Milton convinced the realm he was the next Elon Musk. Insiders screech a historic previous of lies introduced the billionaire down.

A spokesperson for Milton’s true personnel maintained his innocence and criticized the Division of Justice’s investigation in a observation to Insider. 

“Trevor Milton is harmless; this is a new low in the manager’s efforts to criminalize true enterprise conduct. Every govt in The United States would possibly possibly most definitely perchance well also composed be unnerved,” the spokesperson stated. “Mr. Milton has been wrongfully accused following a depraved and incomplete investigation in which the manager overlooked serious proof and failed to interview vital witnesses.”

Last September, Hindenburg Study stated in a paper that it was short-selling Nikola inventory and labelled the corporate a “fraud,” a price it denied. Amid the fallout, Milton resigned, Nikola canceled its person pickup, the Badger,  and a wide-ranging address Overall Motors all but fell thru. 

Hindenburg alleged, among other things, that a promotional video depicting surely one of Nikola’s early semi trucks driving down the highway was faked by pushing the non-operational truck down a hill. 

In February, Nikola disclosed, following a evaluation by an commence air regulations agency, that every it and Milton had made a lot of statements that were partly or fully incorrect.

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