NBA Hall of Famer and TV personality Shaquille O’Neal has been accused of avoiding being served a class-action lawsuit filed against celebrities who endorsed failed cryptocurrency giant FTX.
The former Los Angeles Lakers star was one of several high-profile celebrities — including Steph Curry, Tom Brady, Giselle Bundchen and Larry David — listed in the lawsuit filed by FTX retail investor Edwin Garrison, who claimed his crypto account went bankrupt after “being exposed to” the celebrity endorsements.
Garrison’s lawyers revealed that out of all the celebrities named in the suit, O’Neal was the sole person avoiding the lawyers and noted that the allegations against him were among the most damning.
“It is really astonishing the measures he has gone to avoid service of our complaint,” attorney Adam Moskowitz told Forbes. “The irony is that the admitted facts against him are probably the worst against any of the FTX Brand Ambassadors.”
In an email sent out to the defendants on Tuesday, Garrison’s attorney’s called out O’Neal, writing: “We have spent great efforts (4 different service companies) trying to get you all served with our Complaint.
“Only one, however, has chosen to evade service, in order to draw out these proceedings, or to otherwise attempt to avoid answering for these allegations,” the lawyers wrote.
A representative for O’Neal did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment.
O’Neal was among the biggest celebrities touted FTX’s services last year, with the former basketball star hosting a Super Bowl Party at “Shaq’s Fun House” in Los Angeles as part of his partnership with the company.
O’Neal continued to promote the company on Twitter, and in June, he appeared as an official FTX brand ambassador with the tagline touting: “I’m all in. Are you?”
On November 11, the crypto giant crashed and filed for bankruptcy, with its CEO and founder Sam Bankman-Fried arrested and charged by federal authorities in December, who allege he swindled investors and customers out of billions of dollars by commingling funds into Alameda, a hedge fund he controlled.
That same month, O’Neal tried to distance himself from the company, alleging that he was just a “paid spokesperson.”
“A lot of people think I’m involved, but I was just a paid spokesperson for a commercial,” O’Neal told CNBC.
Garrison’s lawyers, however, claimed that O’Neal was glad to promote the company while allegedly keeping his own finances away from it.
“He admitted that his friend Steph Curry called him, told him he could make millions of dollars, if he just served as a FTX Brand Ambassador and lied in a television commercial, that he was ‘all in’ with FTX, when he admitted that personally, he would not go near cryptocurrency,” Moskowitz claimed.
The other defendants listed in the lawsuit include the Golden State Warriors, the Miami Heat’s Udonis Haslem, tennis player Naomi Osaka, Los Angeles Angels pitcher Shohei Ohtani, Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence, former MLB star David Ortiz, entrepreneur Kevin O’Leary and Bankman-Friend.
The lawsuit claims that the defendants ” never disclosed the nature, scope, and amount of compensation they personally received in exchange for the promotion” of FTX.
The defendants are expected to respond to the suit by April 14.
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