Elon Musk “lied” when he claimed he had “obtained” funds to take Tesla private, an investor’s lawyer told a court.
CEO Written in 2018 He had “secured” funding to take the electric car maker private, and investor support was later “confirmed,” Cause stock prices to fall first and then rise.
less than three weeks later, Musk changed plans.
Tesla investor Glenn Littleton is seek damages On behalf of shareholders who bought and sold shares in the days after the tweet, claiming muskThe tweet cost them “millions”.
However, a lawyer for Musk argued in court that the billionaire simply used “the wrong words” when tweeting about his plans.
In opening statements, the investor’s lead attorney, Nicholas Porritt, told the jury in San Francisco, “When [Musk’s] The groin was exposed.”
But Alex Spiro, who is representing Musk, said the billionaire “seriously” considered taking the company private in 2018, but ultimately faced resistance from shareholders.
“You quickly learn that it’s not a fraud, or even a fraud,” he told jurors.
However, the lawyer did tell the jury that Musk’s Twitter post contained some “technical errors.”
“In his haste, he used the wrong word,” he told the court.
Littleton testified in court that he invested in Tesla in 2015.
He said he hastily closed out his Tesla options position after seeing Musk’s “funding secured” tweet, which left him unprofitable.
A nine-person jury will decide whether Musk’s tweets artificially inflated Tesla’s stock price by inflating the funding of the deal, and if so, by how much.
The trial will continue on Friday with expert witnesses, and Musk is likely to testify.
Last week, Judge Edward Chen rejected Musk’s request to transfer the case to the state of Texas, where the billionaire expressed concern that potential jurors in California would be biased against him.
He cited negative media coverage He’s cutting thousands of jobs at Twitterheadquartered in San Francisco, After he took over the social media platform last October.
The jury will be tasked with deciding whether Musk’s tweets influenced investors, whether he acted intentionally, and whether damages should be awarded.
Judge Chen has ruled that these statements SpaceX owner made is untrue, but the defendant will argue that he has good reason to believe that the funds to take Tesla private are secure.