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Tesla under criminal investigation by Justice Department

September 18, 2018

Tesla is under investigation by the Justice Department, a company spokesperson confirmed Tuesday.

In a statement to The Washington Times, the Tesla spokesperson said the Justice Department reached out for documents after an August tweet by CEO Elon Musk about taking the high-tech car company private:

Am considering taking Tesla private at $420. Funding secured. Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 7, 2018

The tweet also launched a civil investigation from the Securities and Exchange Commission. The buyout fell through in just a few weeks, but that made the CEO and the company vulnerable to punishments from the SEC for misleading the investors.

The spokesperson said Tesla has thus far been cooperative with the investigation, which was first reported by Bloomberg.

The report comes on the heels of a bad stretch for Tesla.

The company’s stock tanked and fell at least 10 percent to $252.25 on Sept. 7 after the departures of two key company executives.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Tesla’s stock price had climbed back to $279, but had dropped 5 percent from the previous day.

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