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  1. ITV Report

Elon Musk trial jury have heard all the evidence

Vernon Unsworth, left, is suing Tesla boss Elon Musk. Credit: AP
  • By ITV News Washington DC News Editor Alex Chandler

The jury in Elon Musk’s defamation trial has now heard from all the witnesses, seen all the exhibits and been shown all the evidence.

There are only a few more steps before the eight men and women retire to consider if the billionaire entrepreneur merely insulted British caver, Vernon Unsworth, or seriously damaged his reputation.

In LA’s district court, Vernon Unsworth was cross examined by Mr Musk’s lawyers.

His interview with CNN, in which he dismissed Elon Musk’s specially built submersible designed to bring out the stranded Thai footballers as a PR stunt, was again shown.

Mr Unsworth was asked, that in light of what he’d heard during the trial, if he still thought Mr Musk’s efforts were a stunt and was invited to apologise to Elon Musk.

"Not sure I need to apologise," he said, "I stand by my opinion."

Elon Musk, centre, is disputing the defamation case. Credit: PA

The lawyers went on to describe the thousands of texts and emails Mr Unsworth had sent to his friends since the infamous ‘pedo guy’ tweet was sent.

He was asked why he had never mentioned the emotional hurt he testified that the post had caused in a single one of them.

"I wouldn’t talk about my emotional feelings to anyone in a text," he replied.

The court also heard that Mr Unsworth told friends he thought he was a fool for sharing his story without being paid for it.

He was asked, did he write that after winning this trial he was going to ’sue in Thailand for a big amount’?

He replied that he didn’t recall saying that before being shown email records that he did.

Mr Musk, who appeared in court on Tuesday, insisted the phrase “pedo guy” was commonly used in his native South Africa and meant “creepy old guy” and not that Mr Unsworth was a paedophile.

On Friday morning, there is legal argument before both parties set out their cases and the judge gives his legal direction.

Then it will be up to the jurors to decide - off the cuff insult or grave accusation?