Last month, Larry David, Tom Brady, Gisel Bundchen, and Stephen Curry were sued for promoting FTX. This month, a new class action filed in federal court names Curry and other big names for promoting Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT and for hidden payoffs.
Alongside Curry, names mentioned include Kevin Hart, Madonna, Jimmy Fallon, Justin Bieber, Paris Hilton, Serena Williams, DJ Khaled, Gwyneth Paltrow, Universal TV, and more. Guy Oseary, a high profile music manager, is cited as the mastermind behind the dubious money-making fraud, as reported by Deadline.
Oseary-backed cryptocurrency firm Moonpay allegedly worked with Bored Ape Yacht Club to ship payments to promoted A-list talent.
“Defendants’ promotional campaign was wildly successful, generating billions of dollars in sales and re-sales,” according to the lawsuit from Adonis Real and Adam Titcher filed on December 8 in the U.S. District Court in California. ”The manufactured celebrity endorsements and misleading promotions regarding the launch of an entire BAYC ecosystem (the so-called Otherside metaverse) were able to artificially increase the interest in and price of the BAYC NFTs during the Relevant Period, causing investors to purchase these losing investments at drastically inflated prices.” The celebrities failed to disclose hefty fees for their promotions.
Plaintiffs are seeking “actual, general, special, incidental, statutory, punitive, and consequential damages and restitution.”
Across a variety of platforms, via formal statements, and in the case of Fallon, The Tonight Show at the end of November 2021, the celebrities began shilling Yuga Labs’ Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT. “In our view, these claims are opportunistic and parasitic,” a Yuga Labs spokesperson said in a statement today. “We strongly believe that they are without merit, and look forward to proving as much.”
Photo: Paul Deetman