The announcement follows Musk surprising investors with news that CFO Deepak Ahuja was leaving at the end of the company’s Jan. 30 earnings call, renewing concerns about the trouble the CEO has had retaining key managers.
“I’m grateful for the opportunity over the past seven months to have worked with both Elon and Tesla, first as outside counsel and most recently as general counsel,” Butswinkas, 57, said in the statement. “I am returning to my home in Washington, D.C., and to my trial practice at Williams & Connolly. I look forward to continuing my work with Tesla in an outside counsel role.”
Required internal controls
The SEC handed down the punishment after alleging Musk committed fraud by tweeting in August that he had “funding secured” to take Tesla private at $420 a share. The agency said this and other claims the CEO made on Aug. 7 were false and misleading and affected the company’s stock.
Both Musk and Tesla settled without admitting or denying wrongdoing and agreed to pay $20 million penalties. The company’s board formed a disclosure-controls committee comprised of three independent directors.
Tesla and Musk’s forecasts also remain a sticking point with federal authorities. The SEC has subpoenaed the company over projections made for Model 3 production rates during 2017 and other public statements relating to output of the sedan.
No new developments
The Justice Department also asked Tesla to voluntarily provide information about production projections and the take-private statements and is investigating, according to a regulatory filing Tuesday. The company made the same disclosure in November, and said this week there haven’t been any material developments in these matters since then.
“To our knowledge no government agency in any ongoing investigation has concluded that any wrongdoing occurred,” Tesla said in the Tuesday 10-K filing. The company said it’s cooperating with the authorities and can’t predict the outcome of the investigations. It added that if the government decides to pursue enforcement action, it could have a material adverse impact on the business.
Source: Auto News