Elon Musk says he can’t get fair trial in California, wants Texas instead
Elon Musk has urged a federal judge to shift a trial in a shareholder lawsuit out of San Francisco because he says negative local media coverage has biased potential jurors against him.
Instead, in a filing submitted late Friday — less than two weeks before the trial was set to begin on January 17 — Musk’s lawyers argue it should be moved to the federal court in the western district of Texas. That district includes the state capital of Austin, which is where Musk relocated his electric car company, Tesla, in late 2021.
For all the latest headlines follow our Google News channel online or via the app.
The shareholder lawsuit stems from Musk’s tweets in August 2018 when he said he had sufficient financing to take Tesla private at $420 a share — an announcement that caused heavy volatility in Tesla’s share price.
In a victory for the shareholders last spring, Judge Edward Chen ruled that Musk’s tweets were false and reckless.
If moving the trial isn’t possible, Musk’s lawyers want it postponed until negative publicity regarding the billionaire’s purchase of Twitter has died down.
“For the last several months, the local media have saturated this district with biased and negative stories about Mr. Musk,” attorney Alex Spiro wrote in a court filing.
Those news items have personally blamed Musk for recent layoffs at Twitter, Spiro wrote, and have charged that the job cuts may have even violated laws.
The shareholders’ attorneys emphasized the last-minute timing of the request, saying, “Musk’s concerns are unfounded and his motion is meritless.”
“The Northern District of California is the proper venue for this lawsuit and where it has been actively litigated for over four years,” attorney Nicholas Porritt wrote in an email.
The filing by Musk’s attorneys also notes that Twitter has laid off about 1,000 residents in the San Francisco area since he purchased the company in late October.
“A substantial portion of the jury pool ... is likely to hold a personal and material bias against Mr. Musk as a result of recent layoffs at one of his companies as individual prospective jurors — or their friends and relatives — may have been personally impacted,” the filing said.
Musk has also been criticized by San Francisco’s mayor and other local officials for the job cuts, the filing said.
Twitter will relax ban on political advertising
Tesla fined $2.2 million in South Korea for alleged false advertising
Musk says drastic cost-cutting averted $3 billion Twitter shortfall
Nearly 100 Starlinks ‘active’ in Iran: MuskNearly 100 Starlink internet terminals are currently operating in Iran, SpaceX chief Elon Musk said Monday. The tycoon had promised to bring the ... World News
Germany tells Musk it expects Twitter to fight disinformationGermany’s digital minister recently met Elon Musk to clarify what Berlin expects from Twitter, especially in fighting disinformation, since the Tesla ... Technology
Musk says drastic cost-cutting averted $3 billion Twitter shortfallTwitter Inc. boss Elon Musk said the platform was on course to hit $3 billion of negative cash flow prior to the recent round of severe ... Technology
Elon Musk posts tweet mocking unhappy investor as Tesla shares retreatElon Musk pushed back on criticism from one of Tesla Inc.’s most vocal supporters amid growing concern about the chief executive officer’s ability to ... Technology