Elon Musk, the controversial entrepreneur and CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, is facing a massive $258 billion lawsuit over his involvement with the cryptocurrency Dogecoin. The lawsuit was filed by Keith Johnson, who alleges that Musk and his companies were part of a racketeering scheme designed to control the price of Dogecoin and deceive people into investing in the cryptocurrency. Johnson filed the lawsuit on June 16 in the Southern District Court of New York in Manhattan.
According to court documents, Johnson’s legal team claims that Musk and his companies artificially and illegally inflated the price of Dogecoin, and that he was “defrauded out of money” by Musk’s “Dogecoin Crypto Pyramid Scheme.” Johnson alleges that Musk and his companies falsely claimed that Dogecoin was a legitimate investment, when in fact it has “no value at all.”
Johnson is seeking $86 billion in damages, as well as triple damages of $172 billion and a court order blocking Musk from promoting Dogecoin. He also claims that all trading of Dogecoin is actually gambling and should be regulated as such. The lawsuit seeks class-action status in order to represent other investors who also lost money trading in Dogecoin since April 2019.
The potential damages sought in the lawsuit are astronomical, totaling $258 billion. To put that into perspective, Disney purchased Lucasfilm and Star Wars for $4 billion, and Microsoft bought Activision for $70 billion earlier this year.
Musk has been in the news recently for his ongoing feud with a video game comedy website on Twitter, as well as his attempt to buy Twitter for $44 billion.