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Former Tesla employee claims Gigafactory 1 is involved in drug trafficking activities

Another former Tesla employee is seeking whistleblower status and hired Stuart Meissner, the same lawyer who is representing Martin Tripp after he was sued by Tesla.

In this new suit, the employee claims Gigafactory 1 is involved in drug trafficking activities and unreported large-scale theft.

Karl Hansen, a former Tesla security employee at Gigafactory 1, reportedly filed a whistleblower complaint against Tesla with the SEC, according to his lawyer.

He sent the claims made in the complaint to a few media outlets, including CNBC:

  • Failing to disclose to shareholders that $37 million worth of copper and other raw materials were stolen from the Gigafactory in the first half of 2018;
  • Spying on employees, specifically by wiretapping and hacking their cell phones and computers;
  • Failing to disclose to local law enforcement and to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency that Gigafactory employees may have been in drug trafficking; and
  • Retaliating against Hansen for raising such issues, internally, by firing him in mid-July.

The basis of the complaint is that Hansen claims that some of that information should have been disclosed to Tesla investors, hence the SEC whistleblower complaint, and other authorities.

No proof for any of the claims was released, nor the full complaint.

We contacted Tesla about the claims, but the automaker is not commenting yet. We will update with a statement if available.

Update: Tesla has issued a response. A spokesperson sent us the following statement:

“Mr. Hansen’s allegations were taken very seriously when he brought them forward. Some of his claims are outright false. Others could not be corroborated, so we suggested additional investigative steps to try and validate the information he had received second-hand from a single anonymous source. Because we wanted to be sure we got this right, we made numerous attempts to engage further with Mr. Hansen to understand more about what he was claiming and the work that he did in reaching his conclusions. He rejected each of those attempts, and to date has refused to speak with the company further. It seems strange that Mr. Hansen would claim that he is concerned about something happening within the company, but then refuse to engage with the company to discuss the information that he believes he has.”

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