Trevor Milton sentenced to jail time in the USA
Milton will not have to go to prison immediately, however, and remains at large for the time being pending a decision on his appeal against the sentence. Trevor Milton was found guilty of three counts of fraud by a federal court in October 2022.
The court heard federal prosecutors argue that Milton misled investors by stating that Nikola had built a pickup from the “ground up,” that it had developed its own batteries even though he knew it was buying them, and that it had early success creating the ‘Nikola One’ semi-truck that he knew did not work.
“There has to be a message that whether you are an entrepreneur, a startup founder, a corporate executive when you go out there and talk about your company, you must be honest,” said prosecutor Matthew Podolsky, a prosecutor, said at the hearing before the sentence was handed down.
Milton’s lawyers argued that the former CEO should receive probation, arguing that any misstatements resulted from his “deeply-held optimism” in his company.