On Monday, a California federal judge ordered a new trial on the damages Elon Musk’s Tesla owes to a Black former factory employee who accused the electric vehicle company of racism.
US District Judge William Orrick granted Tesla’s motion for a new trial a week after the former Tesla employee Owen Diaz turned down a $15 million award.
In October, a jury awarded Diaz $137 million, one of the most substantial verdicts ever in a discrimination case involving a just single worker. However, in April, Judge Orrick said that while Tesla was liable to Diaz for discrimination, the award was too large. He lowered the sum to $15 million.
Last week, Diaz’s lawyers said the reduced award was unjust because it undermined his constitutional rights to a trial by jury.
“We are hopeful that a new jury will see the evidence in a similar light to the first jury and that Mr Diaz will get the justice that the jury system is supposed to provide to him,” commented Diaz’s lawyer Lawrence Organ.
While Orrick did not determine a date for the new trial, he has scheduled a conference for July 12.