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Delaware court denies Musk’s request to delay Twitter lawsuit but approves request to add whistleblower allegations


This illustration photo taken on August 5, 2022 shows a cell phone displaying a photo of Elon Musk placed on a computer screen filled with Twitter logos in Washington, DC.

Samuel Corum | AFP | Getty Images

A Delaware court has denied Elon Musk’s request to delay the trial over his attempt to drop a $44 billion deal to buy Twitter, according to a new filing released Wednesday.

But Tesla’s billionaire CEO will be allowed to add allegations from a Twitter whistleblower to his countersuit, Chancellor Kathaleen McCormick has said.

The trial is set to begin on October 17, ahead of the mid-November date requested by Musk’s team in its latest campaign.

“I have previously rejected defendants’ arguments in response to Twitter’s expediting motion, making it clear that the longer the delay until trial, the greater the risk of irreparable harm to Twitter,” McCormick wrote. “I am convinced that even a four-week delay would risk further harm to Twitter, too great to be justified.”

Still, McCormick said Musk’s request to amend his counterclaim clears the court’s relatively “low” bar for doing so. Musk’s attorneys have asked to add allegations related to the whistleblower complaint recently made public by former Twitter security chief Peiter “Mudge” Zatko. Musk’s team argued that the complaint, which detailed what Zatko alleged were gross security lapses on the company’s part, would show that Twitter breached the terms of the merger agreement if it were. true.

Shortly after Zatko’s allegations became public, Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal said in a note to employees first reported by CNN that while they were still reviewing the complaint, it was “a false account riddled with inconsistencies and inaccuracies, and presented without significant context.”

Musk initially said he wanted out of the deal because he hadn’t been reassured by Twitter about the percentage of its monetizable users who are actually spam accounts.

McCormick said Musk’s team would only be allowed “gradual discovery” based on the new allegations, including “the discovery of targeted documents and a minimum of additional experts and fact witnesses.”

“We hope winning the motion to amend will bring us one step closer to the truth that will come out in this courtroom,” Musk attorney Alex Spiro of Quinn Emanuel said in a statement.

Twitter did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

WATCH: A timeline of the Elon Musk-Twitter takeover saga



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