Elon Musk did more damage to himself than seeking any goodwill during the rescue operations that were going on the Thai cave in the month of July. His distasteful remark on British cave explorer Vern Unsworth has now got him sued. Unsworth has filed a defamation lawsuit against the Tesla CEO. Vern Unsworth was among the team of divers who helped the trapped 12 boys and their coach get out of the Tham Luang cave complex. Musk's comments had received a backlash on social media. Elon Musk Trolled on Twitter For Calling British Diver Who Helped in Thai Cave Boys Rescue a 'Pedo Guy'.
The lawsuit was filed in US District Court in California on Monday, September 17. It said Mr Musk started a defamation campaign 'to destroy' the image of Unsworth. Unsworth's attorney L. Lin Wood said in a statement. "Musk's influence and wealth cannot convert his lies into truth or protect him from accountability for his wrongdoing in a court of law." It seeks damages of $75,000. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk Reveals Japanese Billionaire Yusaku Maezawa Will Fly Around the Moon on the Big Falcon Rocket.
Musk had designed a mini-submarine to extract the footballers from the caves but it turned out to a failed plan. The rescue team of divers dismissed it and called it unrealistic. British diver expert Vern Unsworth called it all a publicity stunt. Unsworth was quoted to CNN, he said, "It just had absolutely no chance of working. He had no conception of what the cave passage was like." In response to this, Musk ended up calling Unsworth a paedophile.
The aftermath of Musk's comments was serious as his company's shares faltered. Tesla's shares tumbled as much as 3.6 percent, taking its valuation to $52.2 billion. It lost almost $2 billion because of the owner's comment. As investors lined up about the falling stock, Musk issued an apology for his comments. He said that he was angry about their remarks and whatever he said was his mistake.