Shaq Reportedly Hiding in his House to Avoid FTX Lawsuit

News | March 16, 2023 By:

Former Los Angeles Lakers star Shaquille O’Neal reportedly evaded multiple attempts to serve him with an FTX lawsuit by hiding in his house.

FTX is a multibillion-dollar Texas-based crypto exchange that filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in November 2022. The following month, FTX founder and former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried was arrested and charged with defrauding clients of their money and using it to merge with neighboring firm, Alameda Research, for his own personal gain.

Prior to the company’s crash, O’Neal, alongside other personalities such as Tom Brady, Stephen Curry and comedian Larry David endorsed FTX, encouraging potential investees to join the movement.

After the Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, a class action lawsuit was filed in Florida by Oklahoma resident and FTX retail investor Edwin Garrison against the people behind FTX and the celebrities who endorsed the crypto company during its heyday. The lawsuit alleged that Shaq utilized his “persuasion” to get individuals to join FTX. It claims that the Lakers legend was aware of what he was convincing investors to do.

In an interview with CNBC Make in December 2022, Shaq distanced himself from the bankrupt crypto exchange, stating that “he doesn’t believe in crypto” and that he “was just a paid spokesperson for a commercial.”

“People know I’m very, very honest,” O’Neal told CNBC Make it. “I have nothing to hide. If I was heavily involved, I would be at the forefront saying, ‘Hey.’ But I was just a paid spokesperson.”

According to Garrison’s lawyers, when process servers visited O’Neal’s house, he refused to answer the door to avoid being served court documents.

“Over the past month, the 7-foot-1-inch tall athlete has allegedly hidden inside his home when process servers appeared at his door with court papers. The lawyers also claimed to have contacted O’Neal’s last known litigation counsel to no avail,” Forbes reports.

“It is really astonishing the measures he has gone to avoid service of our complaint,” Adam Moskowitz, one of Garrison’s lawyers said in an email, according to Forbes. “The irony is that the admitted facts against him are probably the worst against any of the FTX Brand Ambassadors.”