Feds: Former Tesla engineer hacked his boss


Federal prosecutors have charged a former Tesla Motors engineer with two felony counts and one misdemeanor count of computer intrusion for hacking into private company information.

Nima Kalbasi, 28, a former mechanical engineer for the Palo Alto-based auto company, is accused of hacking his supervisor’s e-mail account, according to the FBI. Prosecutors charge that Kalbasi obtained confidential communications and employee evaluations, shared the information with other Tesla employees and posted it online with misleading comments.

Kalbasi, a Canadian citizen, was arrested Aug. 24 in Vermont by federal agents as he returned to the U.S. He appeared in U.S. District Court last week.

A conviction on each felony charges carries a maximum five-year prison term. The computer hacking and intellectual property unit of the U.S. Attorney’s Office is handling the case with the FBI’s San Jose office.

Illustration by Seattle Times/KRT archives