Nicola founder Trevor Milton accused of sexual abuse by two women

Two women have come forward with formal sexual harassment allegations against Nicola founder Trevor Milton, accusing the 38-year-old billionaire in complaints filed with Utah officials of sexual abuse when both women were 15 years old.

Pulling the charges back more than 15 years, after Milton’s resignation as Nicole’s executive chairman, brief salesman Hindenburg Research issued a very alarming report on 21 September detailing fraud charges. The report also reportedly questioned Milton and Nicola by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Justice.

Ever since the Hindenburg report dropped two weeks ago, shareholder lawsuits and personal attacks on social media have begun to gain momentum.

Through a spokeswoman, Milton “strongly denied” what he said were false allegations and refused to address specific details of the women’s complaints.

Turnout has been rapid for Milton. The company went public on June 4 and Milton was riding high as one of Wall Street’s newly minted billionaires under 40. Although Phoenix-based Nicola did not produce a single vehicle, the start-up had a market value of $ 28.8 billion after the IPO. – a fridge over Ford Motor – and Milton had a net worth of more than $ 8.6 billion. General Motors entered into an agreement with Nikola to provide the technology and to manufacture its electric pickup trucks on the Sept 8.

Following the Hindenburg report, there were allegations of explosion on social media. 21 to Milton’s cousin Aubrey Ferrin Smith, who publicly accused Milton on Twitter and Facebook that he was 15 years old and 15 years old after a family funeral in Salt Lake City in 1999. Was 17 years old.

Ferrin Smith on Saturday filed a formal complaint with the local police in Holladay, Utah, where the alleged attack took place. Sergeant. Melody Cutler with the Unified Police Department in Utah confirmed that a report had been filed against Milton, as well as repeated allegations she had made on Twitter.

CNBC did not name the victims of the sexual assault and Cutler refused to release the identity of the alleged victim. Ferrin Smith and his lawyer agreed to talk about his case on record.

The second alleged attack, which was previously unreported, occurred in 2004, when Milton was 22 years old and hired a 15-year-old girl as an office assistant for a security guard whom he drove to St. George Was. Ut, according to Craig Johnson, a former prosecutor who represents both women.

“It has been alleged by my client that she digitally penetrated her vagina with her fingers, which causes object rape under Utah law, and this is the charge that the police will be investigating, including forcibly sexual Exploitation, which includes any kind of supportive touch during the attack, vagina, ”Johnson said in an interview with CNBC.

Capt. Mike Giles of the St. George Police Department confirmed that a complaint involving a minor was filed on Friday, but declined to release any further details.

Milton spokesman Brandon Messina said in a statement to CNBC, “Mr. Milton strongly denied these false allegations. Never in his life has Mr. Milton been in any kind of inappropriate physical contact with anyone.”

Milton ran several companies before setting up Nicola in 2010, including St. George’s Security and Alarms, which he incorporated in May 2004 according to state records. The office had a movie room where one night Milton invited his new assistant, the woman said in an interview with CNBC. She said she agreed to stay because she was paying him by the hour, needed money and depended on him for a ride home.

The now 32-year-old woman, who is a lawyer, said she has spent the last 16 years trying to forget what happened.

“I put that whole scenario in a dark place, closed it and tried to forget about it,” he said.

Sometime in the evening, Milton allegedly began fuming at the 15-year-old, touching her breasts before putting her hands under his pants for the first time, she said. “I’m just frizzy,” he said.

He said, because he did not have a driving license, he had to wait.

“He was in a position of power and he would give me a ride home from that job and it happened at the end of one of the days I worked there and I was somewhat at his mercy because I couldn’t go home He was going to give me a ride home, ”he said.

She said that she did not tell anyone about the alleged attack at the time and left shortly thereafter.

A few years later, Milton’s former friend, Tyler Winona, claimed that Milton bragged about the attack. Winona said the two were living together at the time and the pair bought a Lotus car together. On his way back to St. George with the car around 2006, Winona said, Milton described the incident.

“I still remember where we were on the road, almost back to St. George, he told me that when (he) worked for her, he told her to leave school and watch a movie in the back and cuddling with him Blackmailed for, “Winona said in an interview. Winona said Milton said he took his virginity to the theater room.

“She told me she fingered him,” Winona said. “She kept saying, I like young girls and I like virgins because they are inexperienced.”

Their relationship soon soured and the two got married on bad terms. He said the two were falling out with his then girlfriend and friendship with Milton came down from there. Winona said Winona’s mother briefly called Milton and Milton implicated Winona for stealing a $ 1,500 radar detector.

A friend of the alleged victim, who asked to remain anonymous because she feared retaliation from Milton, said she knew she had made unwanted advances on her friend.

“I don’t think I knew the details, but I knew he said in an interview with CNBC,” she had stepped on him sexually.

He said that Milton also lovingly pushed him forward, tried to hug him, kissing him and finally invited him to Puerto Rico when he was 16 and he was approaching his mid-20s. She asked her parents permission to pick her up, “but it made me uncomfortable when she started talking about taking a bubble bath together in Puerto Rico,” she said, adding that she wasn’t leaving.

Ferrin Smith said she was in Utah for her grandfather’s funeral at her uncle’s homes outside Salt Lake City in September 1999 when she was allegedly attacked. He said that two cousins ​​coming from a large Mormon family in Utah were watching TV alone in a room in the house. Milton told him that he was taking a massage class at school and convinced her to take him upstairs for a massage, he said in an interview to CNBC.

“She opened my bra completely without my consent, and I froze,” she said. She said that she was sitting in front of the TV when she reached from behind Milton and groped her breasts.

“It didn’t just count, because I was like, it’s a family member, he has a priest, he was soon going on a mission, which he liked to talk about … I didn’t even think. “I just trusted him,” she said.

The incident shook him and he said that he had told his best friend Libby Cannon Miller at the time. Ken Miller said in an interview that teenage girls were having a sleepover a few weeks later when Cannon Miller could hear Ferrin Smith crying.

“She told me that while she was going out with the family, she and her cousin were a group of people watching a movie and at some point some people left and her cousin asked if she could give it to her. Can give massage, ”Cannon Miller. “Then he told me that the massage went from back to front and it happened without his consent.”

Ferrin Smith also acknowledged his mother’s time, who confirmed the same account of events to CNBC. In addition she went to the bishop of the local Mormon Church in her home town of Narrowville, Illinois, Taylor Manning, who did not respond to messages left on her cellphone and believed it to be her number.

He did not respond to a message with the Naperville Illinois steak, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, refusing to comment. Peter Schofield, a lawyer for Kirtan McConkey who represents the LDS Church, did not return an email seeking comment on the case. In 2017, when the #MeToo movement was in full swing, Ferran Smith reported his alleged attack on Facebook, without identifying Milton by name.

“I was 15 when I was attacked. I didn’t want to tell anyone, because I felt I should have known better,” she wrote at the time. He said that when he confronted him, he said “he was only apologizing because he was my cousin.”

Johnson, who is representing women, said he does not believe the statute of limitations applies in both cases. Uta has since forgiven it for most sexual offenses, he said.

In the St. George case, he stated that the alleged crime of object rape is a first-degree felony that carries a sentence of five years in prison. Johnson said that forced sexual abuse carries a prison sentence of one to 15 years.

Deputy Blake Nakamura, head of the Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office, said officers regularly investigate the old allegations but it is on a case-by-case basis whether they can proceed with any charges.

Nakamura said that old cases between two minors rather than an adult and a minor are harder to establish. According to Nakamura, sexual offenses between 14-year-olds and 17-year-olds are generally considered a misdemeanor.

He said that there are circumstances in which a case can be opened but after filing a complaint with local authorities the alleged victim will need to initiate an investigation.

GM declined to say whether the company was aware of any allegations of fraud or sexual exploitation about Milton. GM CEO Mary Bara defended the company’s $ 2 billion earlier this month, a non-cash deal with Nicola, saying it did “due diligence” before announcing the agreement.

“Our transaction with Nicola has not closed,” a GM spokesman said in an email on Monday. “We are continuing our discussion with Nicola and will provide further updates when appropriate or necessary.”

The deal is expected to close by Wednesday.

GM was introduced to Nicola, through GM Giri’s former vice president, who succeeded Milton as executive chairman at Nicola earlier this month. Girsky is a managing partner at VectoQ, a special-purpose acquisition company that took Nicola public, and joined Nicola’s board after the deal closed.

Girkowski previously said his company showed up with an army of people “to diligently do this thing” about Nicole, according to a webcast in early August with an industry show called Autoline.

He said, “We really creep up on all these people. It wasn’t pleasant at times,” he said, later not saying “There is no doubt that there will be twists and turns here, but I did my Put the reputation on the line. Cheese. ”

Girsky did not return calls or texts for comment. VectoIQ did not return emails. Nicola declined to comment.


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