When lawyers for Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) are expected to interview the CEO of Tesla Inc. (TSLA.O) about his sudden decision in July to ditch his $44 billion deal for the social media company, the propensity of billionaire Elon Musk to hurl insults while being questioned under oath will be put to the test once again this week. This week will be the time for the interview to take place.
Earlier in court, the world’s wealthiest person called opposing attorneys “reprehensible,” questioned their happiness, and accused them of “extortion.” He is also the world’s richest person.
The attorney’s client was allegedly behind on child support payments, so he questioned one of the attorneys about whether or not he worked on a contingency basis. The client believed that the attorney’s client was responsible for the arrears.
“As a result, you are most likely working on a contingency basis or stealing money from the child. What exactly is it?” According to a deposition transcript from 2020, Musk asked a lawyer for the identity of a whistleblower in a Tesla lawsuit.
The general public will be unable to take part in the high-stakes Twitter Inc interview. The Musk deposition was scheduled to begin on Monday and continue through Wednesday, according to a document submitted to the court the week before. According to sources familiar with the proceedings, Musk was not questioned during his deposition on Monday. These sources had no idea when the deposition would start and had no explanation for the delay.
According to James Morsch, a corporate litigator who is not involved in the court battle, it may be difficult for Musk’s attorneys to keep him focused on answering questions because he is both a knowledgeable and opinionated witness. They will want to keep him on task, though.
Morsch remarked that it was like trying to hold a tiger by his tail. “I would equate it to that,” he said.
According to the transcript, Elon Musk declined five times in 2019 to answer one of the initial questions during a deposition related to a lawsuit concerning Tesla’s acquisition of solar panel manufacturer SolarCity because of the way the question was phrased.
Musk reportedly responded to the opposing attorney Randall Baron, “We can gaze at each other until you restate it,” according to a transcript of the conversation.
After hearing this, Baron remarked, “I’ll guess we’ll just cancel this deposition.” This seemed to get things rolling again, so Baron’s suggestion that he would seek an order from the judge directing Musk to answer questions appeared to be effective.
Both Twitter Inc and Musk’s legal team did not immediately react to a request for comment after it was made. Twitter Inc chose not to comment.
It is expected that Twitter Inc’s attorneys will use the interview to try to show that Musk walked away from the deal because of falling financial markets rather than because the company misled him about the actual number of users or hid security flaws, as he alleged. This strategy is expected to be used by Twitter Inc’s attorneys.
Twitter Inc is seeking a compelling order Musk to purchase the firm for $54.20 a share, while Musk is seeking permission from the judge to leave the company without incurring any penalties. On Friday, Twitter Inc’s shares finished the day with a gain of 0.4%, reaching $41.58.
The beginning of a trial that will last for five days is set to take place on October 17 in Wilmington, Delaware.
Each party will conduct dozens of depositions in this dispute, including one with Twitter Inc’s Chief Executive Officer, Parag Agrawal, as they interview witnesses and gather evidence to support their stance.
According to a court filing, Agrawal was supposed to answer questions from Musk’s attorneys at a law firm in San Francisco starting at 9 a.m. local time on Monday. However, sources indicated that the deposition was postponed and did not give a reason.
Jack Dorsey, who helped develop Twitter Inc and once served as its CEO, was supposed to give a deposition the week before last.
WHAT IS THE COMPLETE TRUTH BETWEEN TWITTER INC AND MUSK?
Musk has occasionally demonstrated in his depositions the same charisma and wit that he uses on Twitter Inc, where he has built up a following similar to that of a cult.
During the deposition, the mood on Twitter Inc may be agitated.
The firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz is on its legal team, and Bill Savitt is the primary attorney working on the lawsuit.
Savitt initially represented Musk and Tesla in the SolarCity purchase, but he did not do so during the dispute’s discovery and depositions. Savitt did not respond to an interview request.
Additionally, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati serves as Twitter Inc’s legal counsel.
Musk’s disdain of attorneys for the opposite side, whom he accuses of “trickery” and of chasing him solely to make money, is a consistent theme across the three depositions that Reuters has read.
“Yesterday, I learned that legal services make up about 3% of the economy in the United States. That is one of the most depressing pieces of information I’ve come across in a very long time, “Musk stated to Baron, the attorney representing SolarCity, throughout the deposition.
The dispute involving the Tesla whistleblower, Martin Tripp, who accused the firm of wasting raw materials, began with Musk being asked during the deposition if he was aware of the oath he had taken to testify truthfully. Tripp had accused the company of wasting raw materials.
“It seems someone is trying to argue semantics or legalese with you. The full truth of anything — what exactly does it entail.” According to the transcript, Musk asked the question. “You make the statement, “Is that a tree? Can you tell me what sort of tree this is? Is it a tree that has a great deal of foliage?’ Or, if you’re going to assert that something is a tree, is that the complete and unadulterated truth? No, this is not the case at all.”
The attorney for Tripp was quick to remind Musk that the judge had warned him to monitor the deposition if questions weren’t answered correctly personally.
William Fishbach, an attorney, approached his client and inquired, “Do you intend to comply with the judge’s admonition there?”
“Of course,” Musk said.