A few days ago, Judge Torres decided on the requests for Summary Judgement in the SEC vs. Ripple lawsuit. Prior to that, the SEC had asked that certain records, primarily those about emails regarding Hinman, be redacted.
For those unfamiliar with the case, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of the United States has filed a lawsuit against Ripple, the firm that created the cryptocurrency XRP. According to the SEC, Ripple sold XRP tokens as part of an unregistered securities offering. The lawsuit asserts that through the sale of XRP to investors, Ripple, its CEO Brad Garlinghouse, and co-founder Chris Larsen raised more than $1.3 billion.
So, what is the latest development in the drawn-out lawsuit? The SEC and Ripple have jointly asked for a one-week delay of the deadline for submitting the Hinman documents and other required redacted files due to the “extensive materials and redactions.” The new deadline for submissions has been set for June 13, 2023.
Naturally, a lot of wild speculation now surrounds what this might indicate. Could it be a last-ditch effort to settle a dispute? Some claim that XRP will only become legal if Ripple agrees to pay a substantial fine and the SEC rules that it is not a security. In particular, XRP’s secondary sales are not financial transactions.
However, it might be a little improbable in the process. According to John Deaton, many questions regarding whether this delay is meant to allow for settlement talks. The popular crypto lawyer and founder of CryptoLawUS is one of the most prominent legal commentators on the case. He claims a settlement would have been reached before giving the Hinman emails to Ripple. According to him the SEC likely has conceded that the Hinman emails will eventually become public.
In a recent tweet, Deaton said: “As expected, many intelligent people have different opinions than mine, and that’s the beauty of this community. At the end of the day, we are all speculating. But sometimes, the most obvious answer is the right one. Do you know how many documents were submitted for expedited processing?”
Highlighting the permissive costs involved in litigation, Deaton went on to ask, “Do you want to take a guess at how much money Ripple is being billed for several paralegals, employees, and partners reviewing each document to ensure that every redaction aligns with Judge Torres’ decision and meets its requirements? And then, also reviewing the SEC’s submissions? I would say at least $250,000. “
Remarkably with all that is going on in the lawsuit, Ripple found time to buy a stake in the institutional crypto custody sector and develop its own CBDC platform. Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse recently mentioned that unclear regulations in the US could lead to more crypto companies relocating abroad. Ripple’s acquisition of Swiss company Metaco for $250 million aims to expand its services and target the growing institutional crypto custody market, expected to reach a volume of $10 trillion by 2030.