The SEC needs to testify against Elon Musk’s acquisition associated with Twitter, with the public statements that he has released so far. However, their attempt failed when he did not appear in court. The SEC has filed court documents in San Francisco, requesting a court order to ensure Musk’s testimony is recorded because of his denial to follow the process with an earlier subpoena that the SEC sent. X, the renamed entity formerly known as Twitter, has not issued a response as the legal proceedings continue.
SEC Seeks Elon Musk’s Testimony After Missed Appearance”
In a recent court filing in a San Francisco federal court, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) raised concerns about Elon Musk’s failure to appear for scheduled testimony on September 15. It occurred despite the SEC serving him with an investigative subpoena, to which Musk had not initially objected which turned out to be the world news. However, just two days before the appointed testimony date, Musk notified the SEC staff that he would not be attending. His refusal to comply with the subpoena of a sudden assertion of multiple objections, including his concerns regarding San Francisco as a suitable location for the testimony.
SEC Investigates Musk’s 2022 Stock Purchases and Statements
A San Francisco federal court filing reveals the SEC’s investigation into Elon Musk’s 2022 stock purchases ahead of his company’s complete acquisition and statements related to those investments. Musk previously provided two half-days of testimony via video conference in July under subpoena. However, the SEC found it necessary to schedule another session due to a significant influx of documents after the initial meetings. It is not the first encounter between the SEC and Musk.
Elon Musk’s Ongoing Legal Battles
In 2018, Elon Musk faced charges of investor fraud following a tweet claiming he had “funding secured” to privatize Tesla. He settled, relinquishing his board chair position and accepting social media posting limits. Musk has since made efforts to remove these restrictions, most recently in February. Moreover, a recent ruling in New York mandates Musk to address a lawsuit from former Twitter investors alleging he defrauded them by not promptly disclosing share purchases, although an insider trading claim was dismissed.
SEC’s Efforts to Secure Elon Musk’s Testimony
Starting in May, Elon Musk provided “hundreds of documents,” some authored by him, to federal investigators working on the investigation. SEC served Musk with a subpoena for further testimony in May 2023. The current subpoena is aimed at evidence and testimony not yet in the SEC’s possession. Despite agreeing to testify on September 15 and rescheduling once, Musk informed the SEC two days before the scheduled appearance that he would not be attending. The SEC tried to negotiate alternative dates later in the fall, as revealed in court documents. The SEC made efforts to reschedule for later in the fall, but Musk declined. His refusal to testify was unwavering.
In response to Musk’s decision not to testify, his attorney, Alex Spiro, penned a letter to the SEC on September 13, highlighting that Musk had already provided testimony twice and expressing frustration with the ongoing requests further turned out to be the world news. Spiro’s letter, included in the SEC’s court documents, accused regulators of pursuing Musk’s testimony in bad faith, deeming it a time-consuming effort.
Spiro also raised concerns about the release of Walter Isaacson’s biography of Musk, suggesting that new information in the book might be relevant to the case, necessitating additional time for both parties to review.