A Delaware judge has handed Elon Musk a huge win and ordered Twitter to hand over documents to the Tesla CEO that detail the number of fake accounts and spam bots on the platform.
The documents are from a former Twitter executive who Musk said performed a critical role in calculating the number of fake accounts on the social media platform.
Chancellor Kathaleen McCormick of the Delaware Court of Chancery ordered Twitter to collect, review and produce documents from former General Manager of Consumer Product Kayvon Beykpour.
McCormick denied Musk’s other requests, ruling that Twitter doesn’t need to “collect, review, or produce documents” from any of the other employees.
Musk requested documents from 21 Twitter employees in total.
Lawyers for Twitter and Musk have issued a flurry of subpoenas to banks, investors, and attorneys involved in the deal.
The two sides prepare for an October 17 trial in Wilmington.
Twitter claims that Musk is using the concerns about spam and bot accounts as an excuse to get out of the transaction.
Meanwhile, Musk argues the company has failed to show that spam bots account for fewer than 5% of its active users, as it has said in regulatory filings.
Musk argues that the number of fake accounts is closer to 20 percent.
According to Yahoo:
Beykpour was the top product executive at Twitter for years before he was unexpectedly dismissed by new chief executive officer Parag Agrawal.
It was his product team that was most directly responsible for expanding Twitter’s user base — and it is the quality of that base Musk has questioned in seeking to walk away from the deal.
Beykpour joined Twitter in 2015 when the company acquired his live video app, Periscope, and quickly climbed the ranks under former CEO Jack Dorsey.
He was pushing Twitter into new product areas, like live audio spaces and newsletters, before he was ousted.