Elon Musk Denies Claim On SpaceX Paying $250,000 Over Sexual Misconduct Plaint
According to the report, the amount was paid to a cabin crew in the corporate jet fleet owned by SpaceX.
An aerospace company owned by Elon Musk – the world's richest man – had allegedly paid $250,000 to settle accusations of sexual misconduct against Musk in the year 2018, reported Business Insider.
According to the report, the amount was paid by SpaceX to a cabin crew, who worked as a contract employee in the corporate jet fleet owned by the aerospace company.
The report, based on a declaration made by a friend of the attendant, claims that during one of the flights in 2016, Musk had asked the attendant to come into his room for a massage, following which he "exposed his genitals...touched her" and promised to buy her a horse if she "did more".
The attendant, the report says, declined Musk's offer and continued to offer massage without engaging in any sexual act. "She is not going to perform sexual favors for money or gifts," the friend said in a declaration, stating that the incident happened during a flight to London.
Musk has denied the accusations, while calling the report a "politically motivated piece."
When asked for a comment, he allegedly told Business Insider that "If I were inclined to engage in sexual harassment, this is unlikely to be the first time in my entire 30-year career that it comes to light."
He also said that the accusations against him are "wild" and "untrue."
Musk has openly declared his bid to purchase Twitter, which is guided by his belief that "free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy".
Attendant Felt Punished
According to the friend's declaration quoted by Insider, the attendant had spoken about the incident when she went on a hike with the friend, shortly after the London flight.
The friend's declaration states that following the flight incident, the attendant felt that her refusal was being avenged. "She started to feel as if she was receiving some sort of retaliation where her shifts were cut back, and she was starting to feel really stressed," the report said, quoting the declaration.
In 2018, the attendant hired a California employment lawyer and sent a complaint to SpaceX. "The attendant's complaint was resolved quickly after a session with a mediator that Musk personally attended. The matter never reached a court of law or an arbitration proceeding," the report said.
The same year Musk, SpaceX and the flight attendant signed a non-disclosure severance agreement, which granted the attendant $250,000.
The non-disclosure agreement meant that the attendant could no longer discuss the payment or reveal any information about Musk and his businesses.
The friend said that she had decided to come out with the revelations as she felt it was her responsibility. "When you choose to remain silent, yeah, you do become a part of that system," she said.
Musk Suspects Political Angle
Following the allegations, Musk tweeted out what he said his commitment was.
In another tweet, he mentioned that the attacks against him should be "viewed through a political lens" while adding that nothing deter him "from fighting for a good future and your right to free speech".
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