Detroit – U.S. securities regulators continue to violate free speech by illegally silencing Tesla CEO Elon Musk. 2018 Securities Fraud Settlement, Musk’s attorneys argued in court.
The documents, which were filed in Manhattan’s Federal Court of Appeals late Tuesday, were written to support Musk’s appeal of the lower court’s April decision to uphold a settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Brief says the settlement’s provision requiring prior approval from Musk before tweeting about the electric car company is illegal and “imposed by the government before Mr. Musk’s speech takes place.” .
The settlement required approval by Tesla’s attorneys before his tweets went public. The SEC is investigating whether Musk violated the settlement in a tweet last November.
However, Musk’s attorney, Alex Spiro, claims the SEC continues to investigate Musk on topics not included in the settlement. It asks the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit to void or modify the preapproval clause.
“The preapproval provision of a consent decree qualifies as a pre-restriction on speech that violates the First Amendment,” Spiro wrote. “Going forward, I forbid you from making legal speech on any topic without authorization.”
Additionally, Musk’s speech is chilled by the threat of an SEC investigation and prosecution for contempt of court, Briefs said.
The whole controversy stems from an October 2018 agreement with the SEC signed by Musk. He and Tesla each agreed to pay $20 million in civil penalties for Musk’s tweets to “secure funds” to take Tesla private at $420 a share for him.
Funding isn’t locked up and the electric car company remains public, but Tesla’s stock has soared. The settlement stipulated governance changes, including removing Musk as chairman of the board and pre-approving tweets.
In April, Judge Louis Lyman of the U.S. District Court in New York rejected Musk’s proposal to reverse the settlement he signed with the SEC. He also rejected a motion to revoke Musk’s subpoena seeking information about possible settlement violations.
Limon’s ruling said Musk tweeted without prior approval, but the judge later wrote that he had no intention of passing judgment on the matter.
A message was left early Wednesday for comment from the SEC.
Spiro writes that Musk’s First Amendment waiver in the settlement was not voluntary. “This clause applies to future statements about circumstances that no one could have foreseen,” he wrote.
Musk is constantly threatened that the SEC will disagree with his interpretation of what he says, he said. Musk also agreed to the deal at a time when Tesla was a small company and SEC actions could jeopardize its funding.
“The SEC continues to conduct an ongoing investigation into Mr. Musk’s speeches, and to restrain and sober up his future speeches regarding remarks completely unrelated to the 2018 tweet in which the SEC initiated this action. adopts an ambiguous interpretation of the consent decree that appears to have been designed to,” Spiro wrote. .
Tesla is now the world’s most valuable automaker and Musk is the world’s richest man.
Liman ruled that Musk’s claim that economic pressures forced him to sign the settlement was “completely unconvincing.”
Even if Musk worried that a lawsuit with the SEC would bankrupt Tesla financially, “it establishes no basis for escape from the judgment he voluntarily signed,” Liman wrote. ing.
The judge also said Musk’s allegations that the SEC used the settlement order to harass him and launch an investigation were “baseless.”
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https://www.ksat.com/business/2022/09/28/in-court-brief-musk-says-the-sec-is-unlawfully-muzzling-him/ In court, Musk said the SEC had illegally silenced him