Elon Musk Is Ordered To Pay A Metal Drummer $56 Billion

In a major ruling that has surprised both the business and legal worlds, Tesla and X CEO Elon Musk must pay $56 billion to Richard Tornetta, a metal musician from Pennsylvania.

This ruling stems from a lawsuit initiated by the Dawn Of Correction drummer Tornetta, challenging the fairness of Musk’s compensation package awarded by the Tesla board in 2018. The case, which concluded in late 2022, represents one of the most significant legal setbacks for the billionaire entrepreneur, highlighting an intersection of corporate law and individual shareholder rights.

A Historic Legal Battle

The origins of this case trace back to 2018 when Tornetta, owning just nine shares of Tesla, filed a lawsuit against Musk. The suit contested a massive compensation package that the Tesla board had allocated to Musk, arguing that it was disproportionately unfair to him and other shareholders.

This legal challenge garnered widespread attention, culminating in a trial that saw Chancellor Kathaleen McCormick of the Delaware Court of Chancery ruling in favor of Tornetta. The decision not only voided the multi-billion-dollar deal but also underscored the influence that individual shareholders can wield in corporate governance.

Musk’s Reaction And Legal Precedents

Following the court’s decision, Musk took to X to express his dissatisfaction, writing:

“Never incorporate your company in the state of Delaware.”

This case, according to Eric Talley, a professor of corporate law at Columbia Law School, will become a staple in the study of corporate law, as he told the Guardian:

“[Tornetta’s] name is now etched in the annals of corporate law. My students will be reading Tornetta v Musk for the next 10 years.”

From Metal To Legal History

Tornetta’s path from playing drums in the Dawn Of Correction to becoming a key figure in a historic legal case is as unusual as it is impressive. His band was around from 2005 to 2009 and made an impression in the metal scene, even playing at the famous New York punk spot CBGB.

After the band, Tornetta moved into marketing and now works for Homecast, an online real estate marketing company. His win against Musk stands out as a significant moment, especially as it follows Musk’s previous legal loss in Delaware over his attempt to back out of buying Twitter.

Check out Musk’s tweet below.