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Green Vehicle Entrepreneur Convicted of Securities and Wire Fraud

Trevor Milton. By Miljøstiftelsen ZERO – link, CC BY 2.0, link.

Essay by Eric Worrall

Trevor Milton, founder of Nikola, who claimed to have developed prototype hydrogen and electric vehicles, has been convicted of deceiving investors.

Trevor Milton, founder of Nikola, found guilty of fraud

By Matt McFarland, CNN Business and Reuters
Updated 6:30 PM EDT, Fri October 14, 2022

Washington, DCCNN — 

Nikola founder Trevor Milton was convicted Friday by a U.S. jury of fraud in a case alleging he lied to investors about the electric and hydrogen fuel cell company’s technology.

The jury found Milton guilty on a count of securities fraud and two counts of wire fraud after deliberating for roughly five hours. Milton was acquitted on another count of securities fraud. Milton potentially faces years in prison.

Prosecutors had alleged that Milton made false and misleading statements about “nearly all aspects of the business,” including that Nikola had a fully functioning prototype despite Milton knowing it was inoperable. Milton had also claimed that Nikola had built an electric and hydrogen powered pickup from the ground up with Nikola parts and technology, despite not doing so, according to prosecutors. 

“Trevor Milton lied to Nikola’s investors — over and over and over again. That’s fraud, plain and simple,” U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said in a statement after the verdict was released. “Let this case serve as a warning to anyone who plays fast and loose with the truth to get investors to part with their money. It won’t end well.”

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I doubt this will be the last case of green fraud. The political desperation for progress, and the magnitude of easy government money sloshing around the hydrogen, EV and renewable industries in my opinion is likely attracting fraudsters like moths to a flame.

via Watts Up With That?

October 15, 2022

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