Lawyers for NBA star Shaquille O’Neal, who previously endorsed the now-bankrupt crypto exchange FTX, have claimed two process servers inadequately delivered legal documents after previous failed attempts.
In a May 8 filing for the United States District Court in the Southern District of Florida, O’Neal’s legal team said following “a failed motion to serve” the NBA star, two process servers “tossed” papers for a legal complaint in front of his moving car. According to the filing, O’Neal did not stop to pick up the papers but left them in the road.
“This purported ‘service’ is inadequate under Rule 4 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and Georgia law,” said the filing. “It should be quashed, and the claims against Mr. O’Neal dismissed.”
O’Neal was one of many high-profile figures who endorsed FTX before its bankruptcy filing in November 2022. The NBA star appeared in a commercial saying he was “all in” for the crypto exchange. Following the exchange’s collapse and facing potential legal action, O’Neal reportedly said he was “just a paid spokesperson” for the firm.
We couldn’t keep it secret any longer! We’re partnering with…the one…the only…@SHAQ! (a.k.a. Shaqtoshi) pic.twitter.com/V37UQ5wsXI
— FTX (@FTX_Official) June 1, 2022
In November, the Moskowitz law firm filed a class-action lawsuit on behalf of Edwin Garrison and other FTX investors against celebrities and sports figures for promoting the exchange. A similar lawsuit filed by the same firm in March targeted crypto influencers, including YouTuber Ben Armstrong, also known as BitBoy Crypto, who allegedly promoted FTX’s “crypto fraud without disclosing compensation.”
Moskowitz reported on April 16 that O’Neal had been served with the legal complaint outside his house following several unsuccessful attempts. The law firm did not specifically mention delivering the documents to the NBA star in his car or otherwise throwing them.
“As Mr. O’Neal — who never exited his car — drove past the strangers lurking outside his home, one of the process servers ‘tossed the legal documents at the front of’ his car,” said the May 8 filing. “When the documents hit the car, which was moving ‘at a high rate of speed,’ the documents ‘f[e]ll onto the road,’ and the process servers ‘l[e]ft the legal documents on the road where they landed’ — that is, on the public road.”
Related: Judge mulls removing Shaq and Naomi Osaka from FTX lawsuits
According to the filing, this alleged method of serving legal documents was “insufficient under Georgia law” and inadequate:
“Throwing papers at a moving car and leaving them unattended on a public highway ‘is not good tender as it provides no way of knowing whether the papers landed in physical proximity to’ Mr. O’Neal.”
Moskowitz has received authorization from the court to serve other individuals connected to the lawsuit, including by tweet in the case of crypto YouTuber Tom Nash.
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