May 1, 2019 / 12:43 AM / 25 days ago

Judge approves Musk, SEC agreement over Twitter use by CEO

NEW YORK, April 30 (Reuters) - A federal judge on Tuesday approved a deal struck between Tesla Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over Musk’s use of Twitter, a court filing showed.

U.S. District Judge Alison Nathan in Manhattan approved the deal worked out on Friday that settled the dispute in which the SEC had sought to find Musk in contempt of a securities fraud settlement last year.

Earlier this month, Nathan had ordered the parties to work out an arrangement between themselves.

The new deal lays out in more detail what types of statements by Musk must be reviewed by Tesla’s legal counsel before publication, such as financial statements, previously unreported production or delivery numbers, and other topics.

Regulators had claimed that a February tweet by Musk about Tesla’s production numbers violated the earlier settlement, as it had not been vetted by the company’s attorneys. Musk countered that the tweet was not material.

The SEC sued Musk last year for making fraudulent statements after he tweeted on Aug. 7 that he had “funding secured” to take Tesla private at $420 per share.

The parties eventually settled, and the deal called for Tesla’s lawyers to pre-approve written communications, including tweets with material information about the company.

Reporting by Alexandria Sage in San Francisco ; Additional Reporting by Mekhla Raina in Bengaluru Editing by Sonya Hepinstall

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