Elon Musk's lawyer has asked an appeals court to nullify the 2018 “Twitter Sitter” deal. In February, the jury found him not guilty of misleading investors with his tweet that he wanted to take Tesla private.
Elon Musk's lawyer asked a federal appeals court in New York to nullify his 2018 agreement with a U.S. regulator. It requires Tesla's lawyer to check all of Musk's Twitter posts related to the company before he can publish them. His lawyer called it an illegal restriction on his authority and right to free speech.
Musk said the agreement with the SEC violates the First Amendment of the Constitution and that the SEC is harassing him. The requirement “chills Mr. Musk's speech,” limiting his ability to make statements about Tesla that don't violate any securities laws, Ellyde R. Thompson, an attorney representing the Tesla CEO, told the panel, according to BNN Bloomberg.
Thompson on Thursday asked a three-judge panel of the federal appeals court in Manhattan to reverse the ruling and throw out the deal, or at least modify it.
“The pre-approval provision is a classic prior restraint that the Constitution forbids: a government-imposed muzzle on Mr. Musk's speech before it is made,” Musk's legal team said in court papers.
Last year, U.S. District Judge Lewis Liman refused to release Musk from the deal and overturn his “Twitter Sitter” claim. Since then, however, the case has taken a different turn. In February, the jury dismissed investor claims that Musk violated federal securities law when he tweeted in 2018 about taking Tesla private. This means that Musk is found not guilty and has won a multi-year lawsuit initiated by investors who tried to blame Tesla's CEO for their poor investment decisions. A nine-member jury said the class-action investors failed to prove Musk harmed them by tweeting about a possible deal.
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About the Author
Eva Fox joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover breaking news as an automotive journalist. The main topics that she covers are clean energy and electric vehicles. As a journalist, Eva is specialized in Tesla and topics related to the work and development of the company.