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Ukrainian Refugee Who Wins Trump’s First Signed Sneakers for $9000 Calls Out Media – Responds to Bogus Claims From Mainstream Media that He’s a “Russian Oligarch”

  Screenshot: Roman Sharf/X A recent headline might lead one to believe that a “Russian Oligarch CEO” spent a frivolous $9000 on sneakers as...


Screenshot: Roman Sharf/X

A recent headline might lead one to believe that a “Russian Oligarch CEO” spent a frivolous $9000 on sneakers as a political statement supporting Trump. However, the reality behind the sensationalist title is a deeply American story—one of hard work, service, and patriotism.

At Sneaker Con in Philadelphia, former President Donald Trump surprised attendees by launching an exclusive line of sneakers and auctioning off the first autographed pair.

Amid the fanfare and bidding war, Roman Sharf, CEO of Luxury Bazaar, placed the winning $9000 bid for the “Never Surrender High-Tops.”


The sneakers, retailing at $399, are Trump’s novel entry into the fashion world. They feature a shiny gold body, an American flag motif, and Trump’s signature “T” monogram. During the event, Trump spoke of his long-held ambition to enter the sneaker market and praised the positive reception from influencers. 

However, the sale quickly became mired in controversy as mainstream media outlets like the New York Post and the Daily Mail rushed to label Sharf as a “Russian oligarch.”

This mischaracterization sparked a flurry of online backlash, with some individuals vowing to boycott Sharf’s business, assuming his high-profile purchase was a political endorsement.

Sharf took to social media to address the misleading claims.

Sharf is far from the oligarch the headlines have suggested. He is a former Ukrainian refugee who arrived in the United States with his father with only $4 and a future filled with uncertainty.

Photo: Roman Sharf/Youtube

Starting from the age of 13, his relentless determination and hard work paved the way for his success, ultimately enabling him to afford a pair of collectible sneakers.

What’s more, Sharf is a veteran who served in the U.S. Military, honoring the country that offered him a fresh start. He is a Republican and also the proprietor of Luxury Bazaar, which for 21 years has built a reputation for exceptional service and expertise in high-end watches.

In a heartfelt post on X, Sharf emphasized that his purchase was not politically motivated but a collector’s passion and expressed disappointment at the divisive response from the public.

“The headlines say: “Russian Oligarch CEO spends 9000 dollars on a pair of sneakers to support Trump.” Sounds catchy, but I came from Ukraine (back when it was still the Soviet Union) as a refugee with my dad.”

I busted my ass since I was 13 years old, worked every dirty job you can think of to get to a point where I can splurge on a $9000 pair of collectible sneakers, served in the U.S. Military to shown my honor and gratitude for the opportunity to do so… But I guess that headline would not have gotten clicks by saying “Russian Refugee,” or “Ukrainian Refugee,” or perhaps… just a man.

I wasn’t trying to make a political statement by buying the shoes, but still received a ton of messages saying, “You support Trump, therefore you lost a follower and client.” Here, I thought clients bought watches from Luxury Bazaar, due to our 21 years in business and our personalized service. What a confirmation of how divided this country is.”

With that said—no mean tweet, comment on IG, or newspaper article will stop me from being a patriot of this great country. This is great country that once took in a poor immigrant and gave me the opportunity to be where I am today.

The country that stands to give us all a fighting chance. I love this country, and I am proud to be an American. You wanna hate me for wanting this country to be thriving and unified as one—go ahead and judge this sneakerhead for my politics. But just know that no matter what, I do pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

Thank you, and God bless America!”


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