/

Retired NBA star Kevin Garnett sues accountant for $77 million

AFP-JIJI

Former NBA star Kevin Garnett has filed a lawsuit against an accountant accused of helping defraud the player of $77 million, U.S. media reports said Thursday.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported that Garnett was suing Kentucky-based accountant Michael Wertheim and his firm Welenken, accusing him of helping jailed financial adviser Charles Banks steal tens of millions of dollars.

“Banks intentionally . . . looted Garnett of his earnings and assets for many years, including the many years that Welenken and Wertheim provided accounting services to Garnett and his business interests,” the lawsuit alleged.

The suit said Wertheim had “actual knowledge that Banks was helping himself to millions of dollars of Garnett’s money and did nothing about it.”

The case is being heard in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis.

Garnett, 42, retired in 2016 after a 21-season career in the NBA, which included spells with the Minnesota Timberwolves, Boston Celtics and Brooklyn Nets.

Garnett is reported to have earned salary totalling $326 million over the course of his career.

Former financial adviser Banks was jailed for four years in 2017 for his role in a scam to defraud another former NBA star, Tim Duncan, in a multi-million dollar deal.

Banks was ordered to pay $7.5 million in restitution for his role in the fraud.