Elon Musk is said to have sexually harassed a SpaceX flight attendant. He is said to have exposed himself in front of her and made her a sexual offer. His company is said to have paid her $250,000 in hush money.

The aerospace and telecommunications company SpaceX, founded by Tesla boss Elon Musk, is said to have paid a flight attendant $250,000 (the equivalent of around 236,000 euros) to hush money. The reason: The company apparently wanted to settle an allegation of sexual misconduct by the company boss in 2016. The US news portal “Insider” reports.

The case happened back in 2016. The flight attendant worked for the company fleet of SpaceX. According to Insider, after she was hired, she was encouraged to get a masseuse license so she could massage Musk. The incident is said to have happened on a flight to London.

Musk reportedly called the flight attendant into the private cabin of his Gulfstream G650ER for a massage. The Tesla boss was initially only covered with a sheet, then he bared his erect penis in front of her and caressed her leg without consent. He then allegedly offered to buy her a horse if she was willing to “do more,” according to interviews and documents obtained by “Insider.”

After the flight attendant refused, she got less work. Finally, in 2018, she hired a lawyer and sent a complaint to the company’s human resources department.

The complaint was finally settled after a meeting with a mediator, which Musk also attended. In November 2018, SpaceX paid the woman $250,000 so she would not sue Musk. She would also have signed non-disclosure clauses. The case never went to court or arbitration.

“Insider” refers to internal documents, e-mails and conversations with an acquaintance of the flight attendant who wishes to remain anonymous. She felt obligated to go public with it, she said. “He’s the richest man in the world. Someone with so much power, who causes so much damage and then throws money around, that’s not responsible.” And: “I want the truth to come out.” talked about it.

When asked by Insider, Musk asked for more time to comment in detail, but wrote that “there’s a lot more to this story.” And: “If I were prone to sexual harassment, this probably wouldn’t be the first time in my 30-year career that this would come to light.” On Twitter, he called the story a “politically motivated hit piece”. Musk did not respond to an extended deadline.

SpaceX Vice President of Legal Affairs Christopher Cardaci wrote to Insider: “I will not comment on any settlement agreements. SpaceX did not respond to requests for comment to its general media contact email address.