Elon Musk has apologised for insulting a British cave-rescue diver, who threatened to sue the billionaire

Elon Musk. Mark Brake / Getty Images
  • Elon Musk has apologised for calling a British diver a “pedo,” saying “the fault is mine.”
  • Vernon Unsworth, a diver who was involved in the recent rescue of 12 boys and their coach from a Thai cave, had criticised the “kid-size” submarine Musk proposed to aid rescue efforts as a “PR stunt.”
  • Unsworth said Musk could stick the submarine “where it hurts,” prompting the inflammatory tweet from the CEO of Tesla, SpaceX, and The Boring Company.
  • Unsworth had said he was considering legal action against Musk.

Elon Musk has apologised for calling a diver involved in the recent rescue of 12 boys and their soccer coach from a flooded Thai cave a “pedo.”

The incident began when the British diver Vernon Unsworth criticised the “kid-size” submarine Musk had made to help with the cave rescue mission and said the Tesla, SpaceX, and The Boring Company “can stick his submarine where it hurts.” In response to the criticism, Musk called Unsworth a “pedo guy,” and the British diver said he would consider legal action over the insult.

Having deleted his tweet earlier, Musk apologised for his comment on Twitter on Tuesday night.

“His actions against me do not justify my actions against him, and for that I apologise to Mr. Unsworth and to the companies I represent as leader,” Musk said. “The fault is mine and mine alone.”

The apology was a follow-up to a tweet sent three minutes earlier in which Musk said his “words were spoken in anger after Mr. Unsworth said several untruths & suggested I engage in a sexual act with the mini-sub.”

Musk also pointed out that the sub, which was not used in the rescue, had been made “according to specifications from the dive team leader.”

The outburst seemed to affect Tesla shares, with stocks sliding about 3.5% on Monday as investors urged Musk to abandon his tirades and focus on his companies.