Lawsuit accuses Tesla’s Musk of fraud over tweets, going-private proposal


He also mentioned in the tweet that funding for this endeavor has been secured.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk used Twitter late Friday to taunt investors who have bet against his company, even though his previous Twitter comments have spurred a government investigation and shareholder lawsuits. In the days following Musk's tweet, Tesla stock tumbled back down to around $353 per share.

Isaacs is seeking approval to become the lead plaintiff in a class-action lawsuit representing all Tesla shareholders who traded after Musk's tweet on Tuesday or at any time on Wednesday.

Whether or not that will result in civil and criminal penalties for Musk remains to be seen as some reports suggest that the tweet sent out by Musk have left him vulnerable to such charges. The US Securities and Exchange Commission, which has been gathering information about Tesla's public pronouncements on manufacturing goals and sales targets, is intensifying its scrutiny of the company's public statements in the wake of Musk's tweet, people familiar with the matter have said.

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As of yesterday, nearly 35 million Tesla shares were sold short, making it again the most shorted stock in the United States.

Investment bankers and Wall Street automotive sector analysts have so far reacted with skepticism saying it would be hard for Mr. Musk, whose net worth is pegged by Forbes at $22-B, to raise the equity and debt financing needed for the deal given Tesla is not turning a profit. They said he had "addressed the funding for this to occur", without providing details.

The Twitter comments could potentially affect Musk's legal situation.

"We wonder whether surge production techniques to support self-congratulatory tweets are economically efficient ways of ramping production, or whether customers will be happy with the quality of a vehicle rush through production to prove a point to short sellers", the letter said.

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July 28, 2017 - Musk hands over the first Model 3s to employee buyers, announcing over half a million advance reservations for the new electric sedan starting at $35,000. And ultimately, any punishment Musk or Tesla would receive would depend on the amount and strength of evidence the SEC found. If it did, its punishments could range from imposing hundreds of millions of dollars in fines on Musk or Tesla to barring Musk from ever serving as an officer or director of a public company again, according to Pitt.

Elon Musk has a twenty percent stake of Tesla and he is the largest shareholder.

"This whole course of events is highly problematic", Pitt said.

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