Truck manufacturer was charged with fraud and cheating of truckers
A well-known manufacturer of electric semi-trailers was accused of organizing a fraud scheme and forgery of demonstration materials.
According to the accusations released this week the Nikola’s founder Trevor Milton was charged with two counts: securities fraud and a charge of using fake demonstration videos to attract representatives of the trucking industry.
Prosecutor’s office points at the video used to promote semi-trailer prototype – the Nikola One, that falsely claimed that the electric truck was fully functional and operated on its own.
A complaint filed against Milton by the US Securities and Exchange Commission asserts that the truck’s prototype was filmed rolling down a hill.
Authorities said the «deceiving video» «was significant for investors … As its aim was to show that the Nikola had an autonomous truck back in 2018.»
Milton has also been accused of using his social media accounts, TV and podcast appearances to target «individual, non-professional investors.»
Milton stepped down as chairman of the Nikola last September after Hindenburg Research speciasized on sales accused the company of fraud.
On Thursday morning, Milton turned himself in to the police and is waiting for a trial.