You couldn’t have written a storyline on this for Ball in the Family. It would have seemed too unbelievable.
But here we are, and Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball is suing Big Baller Brand co-founder Alan Foster for more than $2 million dollars.
We got word that Ball had cut ties with BBB back in March, and the Lakers star even covered up his BBB tattoo with a bad set of dice. Now a report from Shams Charania says that Ball is suing Foster for allegedly using stolen funds to purchase assets in Africa.
ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne also filed a report with verbiage from Ball’s suit. In it, Ball apparently suggests that Foster had the Balls start BBB specifically as a plan for him to extort money from them.
In court documents obtained by ESPN, which were filed electronically on Tuesday night in Los Angeles Superior Court and are expected to be processed Wednesday morning, Ball alleges that “shortly after his release from prison, Foster embarked on his plan to target Ball and his family” and then “fleeced them of millions of dollars” by “creating a variety of corporate entities in which he gave himself ownership interests and managerial control.”
After Ball declared for the NBA draft, the suit alleges that Foster “persuaded Ball that it would be in his best financial interest to form his own company and his own brand of apparel and merchandise rather than aligning himself with established brands that had expressed substantial interest in signing Ball to lucrative endorsement deals.”
In 2002, Foster was sentenced to more than seven years in prison after pleading guilty to one count of mail fraud and two counts of money laundering as part of a scheme that defrauded 70 investors of $4 million, according to federal court records obtained by ESPN. Foster was also ordered to pay $3.7 million in restitution to victims.
Foster apparently did not inform the Balls of his criminal past. According to Shelburne, Ball’s suit also alleges that Foster had the Balls take out loans in which financing charges were then paid directly to Foster. When the Balls confronted Foster about this, he threatened to make public false information about the family.
It’s sad that people see rich, young kids with talent and see it as their opportunity to steal something away from them. We all want to get to the next step, but swiping from someone close to you like this is a bummer.
We’ll have to watch to see what happens between Ball and Foster. This could just be the tip of a bigger story.