The top executives of Solyndra, the bankrupt federally backed solar firm facing a FBI investigation, are invoking their Fifth Amendment rights and will not answer questions at a highly anticipated House hearing on their company’s downfall scheduled for Friday.
Lawyers for the executives sent a letter on Tuesday to the House Energy and Commerce Committee, the panel conducting the investigation into the company’s $535 million federal loan guarantee, to tell them they would not testify.
Solyndra CEO Brian Harrison and chief financial officer W.G. Stover had initially told the committee they would voluntarily testify, despite their option to invoke the Fifth Amendment against self-incrimination.
Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton, R-Mich., and Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairman Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., released a statement later on Tuesday indicating that they still plan to hold the hearing.
“Who exactly are Solyndra’s executives trying to protect and what are they trying to hide?” Upton and Stearns asked in the statement. “Our investigation has gotten this far without much cooperation from Solyndra, and it will continue with or without their voluntary testimony."