Tesla, Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) Elon Musk cleared of defamation in ‘pedo guy’ tweet trial

Tesla, Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) Elon Musk cleared of defamation in ‘pedo guy’ tweet trial

Tesla, Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) Elon Musk cleared of defamation in ‘pedo guy’ tweet trial

It took less than an hour for an eight-person jury in Los Angeles federal court to reject Unsworth’s claim after a four-day trial.

Elon Musk defeated defamation allegations Friday from a British cave explorer who claimed he was branded a pedophile when the Tesla CEO called him “pedo guy” in an angry tweet.

Vernon Unsworth, who participated in the rescue of 12 boys and their soccer coach trapped for weeks in a Thailand cave last year, had sought USD 190 million in damages for the shame and humiliation caused by the man his lawyer called a “billionaire bully.”

It took less than an hour for an eight-person jury in Los Angeles federal court to reject Unsworth’s claim after a four-day trial.

Musk said the verdict restored his faith in humanity as he quickly left the court with his security detail.

Musk — who deleted the tweet and later apologized for it — had asserted the expression was nothing more than a flippant insult that meant “creepy old man,” not pedophile.

Unsworth had provoked the attack by belittling Musk’s contribution to the rescue — a miniature sub his engineers built that was never used — as ineffective and nothing more than a “PR stunt.” He further earned the ire of the tech whiz by suggesting Musk stick the sub “where it hurts.”

On Friday, it was Unsworth who felt the pain.

“I accept the jury verdict, take it on the chin, and move on,” Unsworth said outside court.

Jury foreman Joshua Jones said the panel decided Unsworth’s lawyers failed to prove their case. He said they spent too much time trying to appeal to jurors’ emotions and not concentrating on the evidence.

“The failure probably happened because they didn’t focus on the tweets,” Jones said after the verdict was announced. “I think they tried to get our emotions involved in it.”

Attorney Lin Wood, in an impassioned and at times emotional closing argument, suggested the jury should award USD 190 million. Wood said USD 150 million of that figure should be a “hard slap on the wrist” to punish Musk for what he said was akin to dropping an atomic weapon on his client that would create problems for years like radioactive fallout.

He suggested the figure would be reasonable given that Musk testified his stock in Tesla and SpaceX is worth about USD 20 billion. But Musk’s lawyer, Alex Spiro, ridiculed the suggested verdict as “numbers being thrown out like ‘The Price is Right.’”

Wood said it was important to challenge Musk’s tweet in court even if they didn’t win. Unsworth had said the statement would appear true if he didn’t sue.

“Anybody that knows this man knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that Elon’s accusations were false,” Wood said outside court. “This was not the justice that he deserved under the evidence.”

While Musk was cleared of liability, the trial was just the latest incident where he’s faced legal problems because of troublesome tweets.

Musk and Tesla reached a USD 40 million settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission last year over allegations he misled investors with a tweet declaring he had secured financing to buy out the electric car maker. Earlier this year, the SEC sought to hold him in contempt of court for tweeting a misleading projection of how many cars Tesla would manufacture. That led to a new agreement imposing tight controls on Musk’s tweets about the company.

The day after Musk’s tweet about Unsworth, Tesla stock price fell 3% and shareholders and people within the company were urging him to apologize. Musk said he resisted at first because he didn’t want to look “foolish and craven” by doing so right after the stock dropped.

Musk’s lawyer told the jury the tweet did not rise to the level of defamation and cases over insults didn’t belong in federal courtrooms.

Spiro said Unsworth had tried to profit off his role in the cave rescue and basked in the many accolades he received.

Unsworth had been honored by the queen of England and the king of Thailand, had his photo taken next to British Prime Minister Theresa May and been asked to speak at schools and contribute to a children’s book, which showed that no one took Musk’s insult seriously.

“People accused of pedophilia don’t get celebrated by world leaders,” Spiro said. “Kings and queens and prime ministers don’t stand next to pedophiles.”

Unsworth hadn’t demonstrated actual damage to his reputation other than asserting over a couple minutes of emotional testimony delivered with his voice cracking that he felt isolated, ashamed and dirtied, Spiro said. There was no supporting testimony from his girlfriend or other friends who could discuss the impact they witnessed, no evidence he had lost business or relationships as a result of the tweet and he hadn’t sought psychological counseling or medication.

Spiro mocked Unsworth’s claims that the tweet was like a life sentence without parole, noting that many people are serving such terms in actual prisons.

He urged jurors to return a verdict that would make clear no reasonable person would conclude Musk had called him a pedophile.

“Tell Mr. Unsworth once and for all, ‘You are not a pedophile,’ ” Spiro said. “With our verdict, we free you, we free you from parole.”

Technical Indicators

Overall, the bias in prices is: Upwards.

Note: this chart shows extraordinary price action to the upside.

The projected upper bound is: 365.30.

The projected lower bound is: 310.22.

The projected closing price is: 337.76.

Candlesticks

A white body occurred (because prices closed higher than they opened).
During the past 10 bars, there have been 4 white candles and 6 black candles for a net of 2 black candles. During the past 50 bars, there have been 30 white candles and 20 black candles for a net of 10 white candles.

An inverted hammer occurred. If this occurs during a downtrend (which appears to be the case with TESLA INC) it implies a reversal. Look for a confirmation of the reversal on the bar.

A long upper shadow occurred. This is typically a bearish signal (particularly when it occurs near a high price level, at resistance level, or when the security is overbought).

A rising window occurred (where the top of the previous shadow is below the bottom of the current shadow). This usually implies a continuation of a bullish trend. There have been 4 rising windows in the last 50 candles–this makes the current rising window even more bullish.

A shooting star occurred (a shooting star has a small real body near the bottom of the candle and a long upper shadow). During an uptrend(which appears to be the case with TESLA INC) the long upper shadow indicates that the bears are gaining control and a top may occur.

A spinning top occurred (a spinning top is a candle with a small real body). Spinning tops identify a session in which there is little price action (as defined by the difference between the open and the close). During a rally or near new highs, a spinning top can be a sign that prices are losing momentum and the bulls may be in trouble.

Momentum Indicators

Momentum is a general term used to describe the speed at which prices move over a given time period. Generally, changes in momentum tend to lead to changes in prices. This expert shows the current values of four popular momentum indicators.

Stochastic Oscillator

One method of interpreting the Stochastic Oscillator is looking for overbought areas (above 80) and oversold areas (below 20). The Stochastic Oscillator is 52.9070. This is not an overbought or oversold reading. The last signal was a buy 4 period(s) ago.

Relative Strength Index (RSI)

The RSI shows overbought (above 70) and oversold (below 30) areas. The current value of the RSI is 56.55. This is not a topping or bottoming area. A buy or sell signal is generated when the RSI moves out of an overbought/oversold area. The last signal was a sell 9 period(s) ago.

Commodity Channel Index (CCI)

The CCI shows overbought (above 100) and oversold (below -100) areas. The current value of the CCI is -23. This is not a topping or bottoming area. The last signal was a buy 4 period(s) ago.

MACD

The Moving Average Convergence/Divergence indicator (MACD) gives signals when it crosses its 9 period signal line. The last signal was a sell 11 period(s) ago.

Rex Takasugi – TD Profile

TESLA INC closed up 5.520 at 335.890. Volume was 1% below average (neutral) and Bollinger Bands were 33% narrower than normal.

Open     High      Low     Close     Volume___
335.000 338.860 334.770 335.890 7,618,937
Technical Outlook 
Short Term: Neutral
Intermediate Term: Bearish
Long Term: Bullish
Moving Averages: 10-period     50-period     200-period
Close: 332.99 300.91 256.82
Volatility: 43 60 59
Volume: 7,478,937 8,793,368 9,358,360

Short-term traders should pay closer attention to buy/sell arrows while intermediate/long-term traders should place greater emphasis on the Bullish or Bearish trend reflected in the lower ribbon.

Summary

TESLA INC gapped up today (bullish) on normal volume. Possibility of a Runaway Gap which usually signifies a continuation of the trend. Four types of price gaps exist – Common, Breakaway, Runaway, and Exhaustion. Gaps acts as support/resistance.
TESLA INC is currently 30.8% above its 200-period moving average and is in an downward trend. Volatility is low as compared to the average volatility over the last 10 periods. Our volume indicators reflect volume flowing into and out of TSLA.O at a relatively equal pace (neutral). Our trend forecasting oscillators are currently bearish on TSLA.O and have had this outlook for the last 3 periods.

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