Britain’s Crown Estate, an independent commercial business that manages the property portfolio belonging to the UK monarchy, issues court proceedings to Musk’s Twitter for rental arrears, in relation to an office space close to London’s Piccadilly Circus. In December, Musk stopped paying rent on all of Twitter’s office space around the world, including its headquarters, in a cost-cutting effort.
https://newslines.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/01/King-Charles-III-tells-Musk-One-must-pay-ones-rent.jpg10801920Mark DevlinMark Devlin2023-01-24 21:36:422023-01-24 21:44:10Crown Estate sues Twitter for London HQ back rent
In a court filing, Twitter says Musk is being investigated by federal authorities over his conduct in his $44 billion takeover deal for the company. The company does not say what the exact focus of the probes is, nor which federal authorities are conducting them. The court filing asks Musk’s attorneys to provide documents that are being withheld, which Musk’s attorney’s say contain ‘privileged’ information. Twitter:
This game of ‘hide the ball’ must end.
An attorney for Musk:
[Twitter’s court filing is a] misdirection. It is Twitter’s executives that are under federal investigation.
https://newslines.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/10/elon-musk.jpg383681Mark DevlinMark Devlin2022-10-14 22:43:442022-10-14 22:43:44Twitter: Musk under federal investigation
Musk’s lawyers accuse Twitter’s top two lawyers, Vijaya Gadde and Sean Edgett, and Chief Privacy Officer Damien Kieran, along with CEO Parag Agrawal, of seeking to cover up the violations of the legal settlements with government regulators by ordering the Twitter whistleblower, Peter Zatko, to destroy 10 handwritten notebooks and deleted 100 computer files.
Twitter’s attempt to buy Mr. Zatko’s silence failed, but Twitter achieved its secondary aim of ensuring Mr. Zatko’s corroborating evidence would never come to light. [The document-destruction order deprived Musk’s legal team of] critical corroborating evidence of Mr. Zatko’s allegations, which would support his account of key meetings and conversations relevant to this case.
According to texts revealed in discovery, Dorsey, the former CEO of Twitter, tried to get Elon Musk on Twitter’s board, but could not do so because he claimed the company’s directors were too risk averse. In a text message to Musk on March 26, Dorsey wrote:
The board is just super risk averse and saw adding you as more risk.
Dorsey said he thought the board’s approach “was completely stupid and backwards.” But said his power was limited because he only had one vote, and 3% of company, and no dual class shares. A little over a week later, Musk announced plans to join the board, before he decided to make an offer to buy the company.
https://newslines.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/Musk-Dorsey-Twitter.jpg437785Mark DevlinMark Devlin2022-09-30 14:21:522022-09-30 14:21:52Dorsey wanted Musk on Twitter’s board, but directors were too ‘risk averse’
Musk asks for the term in his his 2018 consent decree with the SEC, that requires a company lawyer to pre-approve his Twitter communication, to be thrown out, arguing that it is “contrary to the American principles of free speech and open debate”.
The consent decree required Musk to step down as Tesla’s chairman; elect two new members to the company’s board; pay a $20 million penalty, plus a further $20 million form Tesla; establish a new committee of independent directors; and put in place additional controls and procedures to oversee Musk’s communications.
In April, after requesting the agreement be abolished, U.S. District Judge Lewis Liman refused to throw out the decree because Musk entered the terms of the decree “knowingly and willingly.” This time, Musk’s attorneys argue that the SEC’s review has become more invasive:
Under the shadow of the consent decree, the SEC has increasingly surveilled, policed, and attempted to curb Mr. Musk’s protected speech that does not touch upon the federal securities laws. Any objective served by the pre-approval provision has been served.
https://newslines.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/Musk-Twitte-2.jpeg5721000Mark DevlinMark Devlin2022-09-28 22:25:442022-09-28 22:29:37Musk files to end SEC ‘muzzle’
During discovery for the upcoming trial, lawyers for Twitter say Musk’s review of Twitter’s accounts by his advisers do not back up his allegation that the number of fake users was “wildly higher” than 5% as he claimed when he said he was ending the Twitter takeover deal in July. Musk claimed Twitter had misled him, allowing him to walk away without penalty from the deal. The lawyer says that two documents created by the two data scientists employed by Musk estimated that the number of fake accounts on the platform at 5.3% and 11%.
None of these analyses so far as we can tell remotely supported what Mr. Musk told Twitter and told the world in the termination letter.
Twitter’s lawyers have accused Musk of destruction of evidence, citing a screenshot of a conversation between Musk and venture capitalist Marc Andreessen on Signal, a messaging app that includes a feature that deletes messages after some time.
Musk deleted these messages because he anticipated litigation and he knew that they would undermine his counterclaims and defenses.
The same court filing also showed that Musk exchanged multiple text messages with Oracle Corporation co-founder Larry Ellison, starting May 12 through 12:20 a.m. on May 13, which was just hours before he announced that he was pausing his attempt to acquire the social media company.
Twitter’s legal team has complained that despite a subpeona, the Tesla CEO has not really provided the relevant text messages between Musk and Ellison.
Both Ellison and Andreessen have backed Musk’s attempt to acquire Twitter. Andreessen’s VC firm, Andreessen Horowitz, backed Musk with $400 million, while Ellison was one of 19 investors who committed a whopping $7.14 billion for the potential acquisition.
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