A man has claimed that Tesla are suing him for defamation to the tune of £570,000 after he called the vehicle manufacturer "rubbish" on social media.
Han Chao, from China, posted pictures of legal paperwork from Elon Musk's company online which state that Han is being sued for ¥5.05 million (£570,000). The documents also demanded an apology.
Tesla have already had to pay him more than ¥1 million (£113,000) following a separate consumer fraud lawsuit.
The legal paperwork posted by Han states that the most recent lawsuit stems from his posts on social media, in which he described Tesla as a “rogue company”, “rubbish Tesla” and “such a quack”.
Part of the letter read: “Han has been spreading his words through a series of online and offline actions… leading the public to have a negative impression of Tesla, causing damage to the company’s reputation.”
Han took to Chinese social media site Weibo to mock the letter.
He said: “Do you mean to say, even though you need to pay me more than ¥1 million in compensation, even though I am the victim, I cannot say a bad word about you and need to pay 5 million as a price?”
Han was awarded ¥1 million from the previous lawsuit on September 17 this year.
He had purchased a second-hand Tesla Model S in May 2019, and at the time the official Tesla sales website said that it had “no major accidents, no structural damage and had never been in a fire or flood”.
Han claimed he even checked this with the sales person.
Yet just three months later the vehicle started to make strange noises and shut down as he was driving it. Tesla refused to replace the vehicle but did offer to change the faulty parts.
When Han took his new car to a third party he was told that cutting and welding on the car's panels suggested it had been in an accident before, so he took the case to Beijing Daxing District People’s Court.
The court sided in Han's favour, and deemed Tesla to have not disclosed all relevant information about the car thus committing consumer fraud.
Tesla were forced to refund Han for the car and pay him a fine three times more than what he had paid for it.
The Daily Star have approached Tesla for comment.
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