• Shaquille O'Neal promoted FTX through commercials and events
  • He is now facing a class-action lawsuit
  • The plaintiff's lawyers have allegedly tried to contact him via last known litigation counsel, but to no avail

Lawyers have alleged that NBA superstar Shaquille O'Neal may be hiding in his home to evade the lawsuit filed against him for his connection to the controversial crypto empire FTX, which has wiped out billions of dollars in customers' funds since its collapse.

The fall of the cryptocurrency empire FTX has not only triggered a series of collapses in the crypto space but also subjected its endorsers to lawsuits.

After its founder and former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection of FTX and more than 100 of its affiliates and following U.S. financial regulators' move to subject the executive and his inner circle to a series of investigation, customers who were not able to recover their investments have started filing class-action lawsuits not only against the people behind the crypto company but also the popular personalities who endorsed it during its heyday.

Among them is Shaquille O'Neal, who promoted FTX through commercials and events.

O'Neal, alongside other sports personalities such as Stephen Curry, Giselle Bundchen, Tom Brady and Larry David who also endorsed FTX, is now facing a class-action lawsuit for his alleged role in convincing customers to invest in the now-bankrupt crypto exchange platform.

However, lawyers representing the plaintiff in the class-action lawsuit filed by Oklahoma resident and FTX retail investor Edwin Garrison against the said endorsers in a Florida federal district court in November 2022 said O'Neal may be "hiding in his home" after repeated efforts and attempts to serve him with court papers.

"We have spent great efforts (4 different service companies) trying to get you all served with our Complaint," lawyers David Boies and Adam Moskowitz noted in an email to defendants Tuesday, Forbes reported.

"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 added, revealing that the said defendant was the 7-foot-1-inch tall former Los Angeles Lakers star.

According to the lawyers, O'Neal has hidden inside the residence as servers of court papers visited his home over the past month.

They also claimed they have tried reaching out to the NBA superstar through his last known litigation counsel, but said attempts have yielded no success.

"It is really astonishing the measures he has gone to avoid service of our complaint," one of the plaintiff's lawyers said, according to the outlet.

"The irony is that the admitted facts against him are probably the worst against any of the FTX Brand Ambassadors," the attorney added.

Bankman-Fried is currently out on a $250 million bail and is on house arrest at his parents' residence in Palo Alto, California. He is waiting for his first criminal trial in the U.S., which is scheduled for Oct. 2.

Shaquille O'Neal
NBA legend Shaquille O'Neal attends the grand opening of Shaquille's At L.A. Live at LA Live on March 09, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. Michael Tullberg/Getty Images