Tesla has hit one of its prominent Twitter critics and short-sellers of the company with a restraining order – the same person who recently discovered and photographed a model 3 filmed by Tesla in front of a scheduled "autonomy investor day" in April June 22. The company was awarded the temporary detention of the Alameda County Superior Court in California, which was discovered by PlainSite.org. It is not clear whether the retention order has been served.
Tesla claims that the California resident Randeep Hothi "stalked, harassed and threatened" three of his employees who ran model 3 on a Bay Area highway this week. The company says Hothi "pursued these employees on the public highway for about 35 minutes, and runs ahead, next to and behind them, and swings dangerously near the vehicle." Tesla claims that Hothi himself replied close enough to Model 3 that the car's safety function was triggered.
The carmaker also claims that Hothi in February struck one of his employees while he violated and supervised the company's Fremont, California factory. It says Hothi didn't stop and "fled the scene."
Hothi must be at least 1
Neither Tesla nor Hothi responded to requests for comment.
Posting under the username @skabooshka, Hothi published photos of Model 3 on Twitter on Thursday . He noted that cameras were mounted in the back and inside the car, and theorized that Model 3 was filmed for Monday's event. He claimed he saw the car breaking speed limits, noting that it did simple tasks like lane changes, which means that Tesla can misrepresent the recording on Monday's event.
According to his Twitter account, Hothi is one of many Tesla sellers. Card sellers are people who bet money that a company's stock price will go down. Those who focus on Tesla have built a thriving community on Twitter, where they collaborate on hashtag #TSLAQ to try to identify what they believe is business activity of the company and its CEO, Elon Musk.
Musk has a long story that scares people like short Tesla's stock. He has promised to "burn" them a number of times over the past few years, and he and his company himself previously made one of the most prominent anonymous short sellers on Twitter, a user named @MontanaSkeptic. By submitting a pre-order on Friday, and with information about @ skapooshka's Model 3 tweets, Musk's company has once again lost one of the most prominent short-sellers.
Tesla says that Hothi's actions go beyond photographing the model 3 test. In his original petition for the restraining order, Tesla Hothi said "has had a history of violating Tesla's facilities" and that he illegally took pictures and videos of these sites and uploaded them to Twitter. Hothi and other Tesla sellers often post pictures and videos of parking spaces for employees in an attempt to estimate whether the company operates at full production. They also photograph parking spaces that Tesla uses to keep inventory, which they say provides insight into how much demand it is – or is not – for company cars. Much of their popular research winds up on the website tslaq.org.
Shortly after PlainSite had made the restriction scheme public, Musk replied to a 2018 tweet that accused Hothi of being the person behind the @ kabooshka account. That tweet connects to a document on an image hosting site that accuses Hothi of attacking Tesla because his brother allegedly works for Volkswagen. "This is extremely broken. @ VW what happens?" Musk wrote.
(in August 1940) the Wall Street Journal reported that Musk sent to the Volkswagen Group CEO and asked "a Volkswagen employee criticized Tesla on Twitter using a fake name." Musk told Journal that "Diess replied saying it was the guy's brother. That's pretty much it.")
"I don't want to rest. This is my promise," wrote the @ skapooshka account Saturday evening. "Tesla is zero. @elonmusk will go to jail."