EthereumMax, a now faltering cryptocurrency that lost 98% of its value, has left some investors angry.
Those same investors are suing people involved in “promoting” the cryptocurrency, including popular media personality Kim Kardashian and legendary boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr, along with basketball player Paul Pierce and the currency’s creators.
The lawsuit lodged with the Central District Court of California, alleges that all of the celebrities involved were in cahoots with EthereumMax in order to “misleadingly promote and sell” the digital asset.
EthereumMax is in no way connected with the original Ethereum protocol, blockchain or the foundation.
The plaintiffs further stipulate that EthereumMax carried out what is essentially a “pump and dump” scheme which misled investors.
EthereumMax appears to have had nothing to back its value other than constantly pushing the marketing hype surrounding the alleged “high-yield” investments.
Pierce participated in the promotional efforts on Twitter, touting the currency’s high investment profile and its “ability to make money for him”.
“This is not financial advice but sharing what my friends tell me about the EthereumMax token”, Kim Kardashian said in an Instagram post.
However, the head of the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority, Charles Randell, argued that Kardashian had asked her 250 million followers to “speculate on crypto tokens”.
In a statement to the BBC, the owners of the EthereumMax token said they were not asking people to buy the token but were rather raising awareness that it existed. The company’s official stance has been to deny all claims.
Mayweather’s relations with EthereumMax is more vaguely-defined as there is little to suggest that he was actively participating in any such efforts. However, the BBC reported that Mayweather’s match against Paul Logan did mention the token.