The CEO of electric car maker Tesla and space exploration company SpaceX, Elon Mus, has been hit with a $258 billion lawsuit for being “engaged in a crypto pyramid scheme” involving the meme-inspired cryptocurrency Dogecoin ($DOGE).
According to Reuters, a complaint filed in federal court in Manhattan sees plaintiff Keith Johnson accuse Musk, Tesla and SpaceX of racketeering for touting DOGE and helping its price surge, only to then allow the price to plunge.
The lawsuit alleges Elon Musk used “his pedestal as World’s Richest man to operate and manipulate the Dogecoin Pyramid Scheme for profit, exposure and amusement,” and adds:
Defendants were aware since 2019 that Dogecoin had no value yet promoted Dogecoin to profit from its trading.
The complaint aggregates comments from multiple personalities, including Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, questioning the value of cryptocurrencies. It’s seeking $86 billion in damages and wants them tripled, while also wanting to block Musk and his companies from promoting the meme-inspired cryptocurrency.
The lawsuit is also looking to see a judge declare trading Dogecoin as gambling under federal and New York law. The lawsuit noted that DOGE’s price started plunging after Elon Musk appeared on the TV show Saturday Night Live and said Dogecoin “is a hustle.”
Reacting to the lawsuit Billy Markus, Dogecoin’s co-creator, noted that Dogecoin “is the same as everything else,” and questioned whether the lawsuit wants to ”make all crypto into gambling.” As CryptoGlobe reported, Musk has hinted that his space exploration company SpaceX and Starlink, a project meant to surround Earth with high-speed, low latency and affordable internet access, could soon start accepting DOGE payments.
Musk, it’s worth noting, is a well-known DOGE supporter who late last year revealed that he believes the cryptocurrency is better for transactions than other cryptoassets like Bitcoin ($BTC). Musk added that bitcoin’s transaction volume is low while its cost per transaction is high, making it more suitable as a store of value. Being a store of value means investors want to hold onto their BTC and not sell it or move it in transactions.
Musk’s electric car maker Tesla has also recently started accepting DOGE payments on its website, allowing specific products such as its “cyberwhistle,” its “Giga Texas” belt buckle” and its “cyberquad” four-wheeler for kids to be bought with it. These items are all priced in DOGE, ranging from 12,020 coins for the four-wheeler to 300 DOGE for the cyberwhistle.
Featured image via Unsplash