The US Securities and Exchange Commission has charged Tesla CEO Elon Musk with securities fraud accusing him of misleading investors in tweets about taking the company private last month.
It was in August that Musk tweeted about taking Tesla private. He also stated that he had raised funds for the same purpose. But, he never took the company private, instead continued with it being public.
The SEC said Musk’s statements on Twitter were “false and misleading” and that he had never discussed the plans with company officials or potential funders. However, Musk rejected the SEC’s allegations, calling the charges baseless and swearing to defend himself.
“This unjustified action by the SEC leaves me deeply saddened and disappointed,” Musk said in a statement. “I have always taken action in the best interests of truth, transparency and investors. Integrity is the most important value in my life and the facts will show I never compromised this in any way.”
The company’s fortunes on Wall Street declined considerably on Thursday, sinking about 10 percent in after-hours trading to $277.50, down 25 percent since the day of the go-private tweet.