Floyd Mayweather has been named in a crypto scam lawsuit involving the promotion of the cryptocurrency EthereumMax. The Hollywood Reporter reported a class-action lawsuit was filed last Friday (Jan. 7) in California federal court. According to legal documents, the lawsuit was filed “on behalf of a New York resident by John T. Jasnoch of Scott + Scott Attorneys at Law LLP, seeking to represent all investors who purchased EthereumMax tokens (“EMAX Tokens”) between May 14, 2021, and June 27, 2021.”
Describing the nature of the case, the complaint went on to say, “The Company’s executives, collaborating with several celebrity promotors, (a) made false or misleading statements to investors about EthereumMax through social media advertisements and other promotional activities and (b) disguised their control over EthereumMax and a significant percent of the EMAX Tokens that were available for public trading during the Relevant Period (the “Float”).”
The world-renowned boxer is accused of acting as a promoter for the company and claims he violated a 2018 settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission where he allegedly failed to disclose payments he received for promoting a fraudulent cryptocurrency, which resulted in an agreement for Mayweather to pay more than $600,000 in penalties and not to promote any securities for three years.
Mayweather sported trunks featuring an advertisement for EMAX during his boxing match against Logan Paul in June. Additionally, EMAX was announced as the only cryptocurrency accepted for tickets to the anticipated fight and promised customers incentives for using the coin such as boxing gloves signed by Mayweather and an opportunity to attend his afterparty.
In addition to Mayweather and EMAX’s co-founders, Steve Gentile and Giovanni Perone, Kim Kardashian, Paul Pierce, and 10 John Does are also named in the lawsuit.
According to the report, Kardashian allegedly acted as a brand promoter when she encouraged her 250 million Instagram followers to invest in EMAX in June of 2021. A financial services company found that up to 21 percent of all American adults and nearly half of all cryptocurrency owners had seen the upload, which resulted in 19 percent of respondents investing in the cryptocurrency.
“This meteoric rise did not last long, and EthereumMax began to deflate immediately after Defendant Kardashian’s post,” the complaint reads. “On July 15, the price of the EMAX Token hit its all-time low: $0.000000017 per unit, a 98% drop from which it has not been able to recover.”
Former NBA player Paul Pierce faces similar allegations as his co-defendants.
In a May 2021 tweet aimed at his former employers ESPN, Pierce wrote, “Made more money with this crypto in the past month then I did with y’all in a year. TRUTH shall set u Free.” He also named EMAX as his chosen digital currency, encouraging others to give the company a try. At the time, Pierce and ESPN were in a widely publicized dispute, which caused the post to gain traction.
The announcement that EMAX was the selected cryptocurrency used for the Mayweather-Paul matchup was made the same day as Pierce’s social media declaration.
“The Promoter Defendants’ improper promotional activities generated the trading volume needed for all the Defendants to offload their EMAX Tokens onto unsuspecting investors,” the complaint states. “While Plaintiff and Class members were buying the inappropriately promoted EMAX Tokens, Defendants were able to, and did, sell their EMAX Tokens during the Relevant Period for substantial profits.”
Neither Mayweather, Kardashian, nor Pierce have publicly responded to the lawsuit.