Shaquille O'Neal "Shaq" is making it decisively clear: he doesn't support crypto, and he has never done so. This comes following his involvement in the class-action lawsuit against defunct cryptocurrency exchange FTX (CRYPTO: FTT) last month, a lawsuit resulting from his role in a June commercial that promoted the exchange.
What Happened: The 50-year-old businessman and Basketball Hall of Famer O'Neal took part in an exclusive interview with CNBC Make It to discuss his relationship with FTX and his other business ventures.
When it comes to FTX, O'Neal said he was only acting as a celebrity in an advertisement. “A lot of people think I’m involved, but I was just a paid spokesperson for a commercial,” he said.
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The class-action lawsuit against O'Neal and other celebrity endorsers of FTX alleges that they "controlled, promoted, assisted in [or] actively participated" in an aggressive marketing plot to promote the company. It also alleges that Steph Curry, Tom Brady, and Larry David all endorsed the company without disclosing material information to the public.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) made startling accusations against Sam Bankman-Fried, founder and former CEO of FTX, alleging that he had been involved in a "brazen" years-long fraud. The SEC alleged that Bankman-Fried misused customer funds to benefit himself and his crypto hedge fund, Alameda Research.
Bankman-Fried was arrested on Monday by Bahamian authorities and is likely to face extradition.