NEW YORK — U.S. prosecutors on Wednesday added a brand new wire-fraud cost to their case accusing Trevor Milton, the founder and former CEO of Nikola Corp., of defrauding traders by mendacity concerning the electric- and hydrogen-powered truck maker.
The new cost considerations Milton’s alleged scheme from April 2020 to March 2021 to defraud the sellers of a property often called Wasatch Creeks Ranch by making false and deceptive statements about Nikola’s product, know-how and enterprise growth.
Milton beforehand pleaded not responsible to two counts of securities fraud and one rely of wire fraud over statements he made out of November 2019 to September 2020 about Nikola.
His trial is scheduled for July 18 within the federal courtroom in Manhattan.
Lawyers for Milton didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark. The workplace of U.S. Attorney Damian Williams in Manhattan didn’t instantly reply to an identical request.
Milton’s felony case is among the many most distinguished involving an organization that went public after merging with a special-purpose acquisition firm, or SPAC. Critics say that course of is susceptible to conflicts of curiosity and shoddy due diligence.
Nikola went public in June 2020. Authorities stated Milton misled traders concerning the firm in social media posts, TV appearances and podcast interviews designed to drive up its inventory worth and bolster his stature as an entrepreneur.