Daily Brief: Elon Musk’s Defamation Defense, a Canned Tuna Conspiracy, and More

Also a disturbing LAPD body cam video, french fry shortage fears, and Devin Nunes’s high-dollar lawsuit

» Elon Musk took the stand yesterday to defend himself against a defamation charge for referring to Thai soccer team rescuer Vernon Unsworth as a “pedo guy” on Twitter. “I assume he did not mean to sodomize me with a submarine. …Just as I didn’t literally mean he was a pedophile,” Musk said. He’s expected to take the stand again today. [Reuters]

» A new lawsuit accuses TikTok of secretly handing over U.S. user data to China, despite company claims to contrary.The popular social media app is headquartered in Los Angeles, but owned by a Bejing-based tech firm. [Reuters]

» Central Valley Rep. Devin Nunes is suing CNN for $435 million for what he says was a “demonstrably false hit piece.” [CNN]

» Disgraced tuna tycoon Chris Lischewski, former CEO of Bumble Bee Foods, has been convicted in a price-fixing conspiracy case. The verdict comes just as the SoCal company files for bankruptcy.  [Los Angeles Times]

» It might sound like science fiction, but a new weapon being tested by the LAPD claims to shoot out kevlar cord that wraps around a suspect’s body. It can tie up and detain a person from up to 25 feet away.  [Los Angeles Times]

» In other disturbing LAPD news, an officer is being investigated for allegedly turning off his body camera so he could fondle the breasts of a woman found dead in her home. The act was reportedly still captured because of the device’s two-minute buffer. [CNN]

» Amid concerns that redevelopment could raise housing prices, the county wants to spend $41 million on fighting displacement along the L.A. River. [Curbed]

» After an underwhelming potato growing season, fast food fiends could be in for a shock. Some experts are predicting a French Fry shortage may be on the horizon.  [People Magazine]


» The Assemblywoman Angling to Keep Katie Hill’s Seat in Dem Hands Just Got a Big Endorsement According to Gov. Gavin Newsom, Christy Smith “knows how to get things done”

» Billionaire Alki David Ordered to Pay Out Nearly $74 Million in Damages to Accusers Two cases are still pending against the Coca-Cola bottling heir accused of sexual harassment by multiple women

» Kamala Harris Is Out of the Presidential Race “I’m not a billionaire. I can’t fund my own campaign,” she wrote in an announcement.


Jeff Vespa

Hollywood Producer Brian Grazer Is Serious About Philanthropy

Producer Brian Grazer has enjoyed what is, by any measure, a spectacularly successful career. Over the course of 35 years, he has garnered a handful of Emmys, won an Oscar, penned a New York Times best-seller, and found his way (twice) onto Time’s 100 Most Influential People List. In his recent book, Face to Face: The Art of Human Connection, Grazer credits what is perhaps an unlikely source for his success: the personal connections he has formed throughout a career in Hollywood.

On a recent visit to his Santa Monica home, we talked about his extensive philanthropic interests in Los Angeles and beyond; why he prefers to support causes close to home; his partnership with his wife, Veronica; and how not having a beard shaped his professional persona.


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