Elon Musk’s SpaceX, an aerospace company that he created, reportedly paid a woman $250,000 to settle a sexual misconduct claim against him stemming from an alleged incident several years ago.
Business Insider reported that a flight attendant who worked as a contractor for SpaceX’s corporate jet fleet accused Musk of exposing himself to her, touching her, and offering to buy her a horse in exchange for an erotic massage.
Musk said that there was “a lot more to this story” and that if he “were inclined to engage in sexual harassment, this is unlikely to be the first time in my entire 30-year career that it comes to light.”
Musk said that the story was a “politically motivated hit piece.”
Musk has warned repeatedly on Twitter in recent days that “political attacks on me will escalate dramatically in coming months” in response to him buying Twitter. “Watch their dirty tricks campaign against me unfold,” Musk added.
The flight attendant told her friend that Musk, who is the wealthiest man in the world, asked her to come to his room during the flight “for a full body massage” and that when she arrived, he was naked and that he propositioned her during the massage and offered to buy her a horse.
The flight attendant reportedly did not engage in any sexual acts and claims that work began to dry up after the alleged incident.
The flight attendant told her friend that she felt she was being “pushed out and punished for refusing to prostitute herself.”
The report said that SpaceX has in-house massage therapists as a perk for executives, and that the flight attendant was encouraged by superiors to get professional training.
“They encouraged her to get licensed as a masseuse, but on her own time, on her own dime,” the friend said. “They implied that she would get to fly more often if she were to do this because she’d be able to give Elon proper massages. I thought that was kind of strange because — you weren’t hired to be a masseuse. You were hired to be a flight attendant. And if Elon likes massages, then he should be paying for you to go to masseuse school. But she was just so happy and eager to have the job and be able to travel.”
Musk is reported to have personally attended a session with a mediator to resolve the issue with the flight attendant and the parties entered into “a severance agreement granting the attendant a $250,000 payment in exchange for a promise not to sue over the claims.”
The agreement also reportedly “included restrictive non-disclosure and non-disparagement clauses that bar the attendant from ever discussing the severance payment or disclosing any information of any kind about Musk and his businesses, including SpaceX and Tesla.”