Twitter claims Musk is being investigated by US authorities

Twitter has said Elon Musk is under investigation by federal authorities for “his conduct in connection with the acquisition” of the social media group, according to a court filing.

Twitter’s lawyers have demanded copies of “substantive correspondence” between Musk and federal authorities, which they say could provide ammunition for their attempt to compel the Tesla chief executive to close the deal that he struck in April.

The documents at issue include a May 13 email to the Securities and Exchange Commission and a slide presentation to the Federal Trade Commission, according to a letter to the Delaware judge in the case, Kathaleen McCormick. The letter was sent last week, but only filed in court on Thursday.

A lawyer for Musk, Alex Spiro, called Twitter’s claim a “misdirection”.

Musk first agreed to buy the social media platform in April for $44bn before attempting to pull out of the deal citing concerns over fake accounts, sparking a bitter legal dispute between the two parties.

However, he revived his bid last week, prompting wrangling over the final shape of the sale. McCormick last week stayed the legal action until October 28 to give both sides the opportunity to come to a resolution.

Musk accumulated a 5 per cent stake in the social media group in a series of share purchases that began as early as January, months before unveiling his $44bn bid for the entire company.

Lawyers for Twitter have previously claimed Musk breached securities regulations by failing to make a timely disclosure of the transaction, which they say was due by March 24.

“Not until April 4 2022 did Musk finally disclose his holdings, which made him Twitter’s largest stockholder,” Twitter lawyers wrote in their complaint against Musk.

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