Cristiano Ronaldo faces $1 Billion Class-Action Lawsuit Linked to Binance NFTs

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Portuguese football star Cristiano Ronaldo is attached in a staggering $1 billion class-action lawsuit pertaining to his involvement with Binance NFTs, marking a significant legal challenge for the renowned athlete in the digital assets realm.

Portuguese football icon Cristiano Ronaldo faces a class-action lawsuit demanding over $1 billion in damages due to his involvement in endorsing cryptocurrency-linked “non-fungible tokens” (NFTs) associated with troubled crypto platform Binance.

Filed in the Southern District of Florida federal court on Monday, the lawsuit accuses Ronaldo of engaging in deceptive practices by promoting Binance.

Allegedly, Binance’s collaboration with prominent personalities like Ronaldo resulted in investors making risky and expensive financial decisions.

“Evidence now reveals that Binance’s fraud was only able to reach such heights through the offer and sale of unregistered securities, with the willing help and assistance of some of the wealthiest, powerful and recognized organizations and celebrities across the globe — just like Defendant Ronaldo,” the suit reads.

Ronaldo’s representatives declined to comment, and Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, did not immediately respond to The Associated Press’ requests for a statement.

In November last year, Ronaldo debuted his first NFT collection “CR7” in collaboration with Binance, just before the 2022 World Cup. These NFTs depicted seven animated statues capturing pivotal moments from Ronaldo’s life, with prices ranging from roughly $77 to $10,000.

According to a lawsuit filed on Monday, the partnership’s promotion saw remarkable success, allegedly leading to a 500% surge in online searches for “Binance” after the NFTs’ announcement. The suit claimed that premium-level NFTs sold out within a week.

However, the lawsuit also contends that Ronaldo should have disclosed the compensation from Binance for the partnership, citing U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission regulations requiring public disclosure of payments for promoting crypto assets.

NFTs, essentially digital images with unique attributes registered on a cryptocurrency blockchain, experienced a surge in popularity before losing substantial value amidst crypto industry upheavals and controversies.

Binance, previously accused of breaching U.S. securities laws, recently agreed to a hefty settlement following allegations. Founder Changpeng Zhao stepped down as CEO and pleaded guilty to a related felony charge.

This legal action against Ronaldo mirrors previous cases involving celebrities and crypto promotions. For instance, a class-action lawsuit last year named Hollywood and sports figures like Larry David and Tom Brady as defendants in a case against FTX, the second-largest crypto exchange before its collapse in November 2022. The suit argued that celebrity endorsements contributed to promoting FTX’s flawed business model.

Ronaldo, a global sports icon with stints at top clubs like Real Madrid, Juventus, and Manchester United, currently plays for the Saudi Arabian club Al Nassr. Despite the lawsuit, he continues to endorse Binance on his official website and social media, hinting at future collaborations.

 

 

 

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