TWITTER investors are suing Elon Musk and the social media platform over the handling of Musk’s $44 billion take-over bid for the company.
The lawsuit accuses Musk of “wrongful conduct” that violates California corporate laws in different ways, and alleges that his “false statements and market manipulation have created ‘chaos’ at Twitter’s headquarters in San Francisco”.
This included a post in which Musk said his take-over bid for the social media firm was on hold because of his doubts over the number of fake accounts on the platform.
“The tweet by Musk on 13 May constituted an effort to manipulate the market for Twitter shares as he knew about the fake accounts,” the lawsuit said.
It also said Musk benefited financially by delaying the disclosure of his significant stake in Twitter, and his plan to become a board member of the company.
Frank Bottini, who is one of the lawyers representing the Twitter investors, said on Friday that the lawsuit was filed as Musk “continues to disparage the company he wants to buy for $44bn in an effort to renegotiate the purchase price.”
“The complaint we filed in San Francisco seeks to hold Musk liable for his unlawful conduct,” Bottini said.
Media analysts believe Musk’s tweets that he was concerned about the number of fake accounts, or bots, on Twitter were because he wanted to pay less for Twitter than the $44bn agreed with the company’s board in March.