In the court case of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) against Ripple over XRP, there is still no end in sight. The SEC is asking for an extension of the deadline – and experts are puzzled: Is the authority running out of arguments?
The legal proceedings, which the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission initiated against Ripple (XRP) in December 2020, have dragged on for an agonizingly long 15 months. From the outside, the two litigants seem to keep getting lost in legal skirmishes, with Ripple increasingly scoring points on substance of late. However, XRP remains delisted on North American crypto exchanges and for Ripple, this also undermines its business in its home market. XRP investors discuss the situation continuously on Reddit, for example, and point to a new upset. Because as process observer and lawyer James Final makes public via Twitter, the SEC once again wants to be granted extra time to formulate answers to submissions by Ripple.
But that’s not all: the SEC is also asking that a second request from Ripple be rejected. This one aims to move to adjudication in mid-May. A recent letter from Ripple’s lawyers to the court confirms the position, citing May 22 as the date when pleadings should start. The SEC has delayed a decision long enough, they write. On Reddit, commenters express surprise: Isn’t it usually defendants who play for time in court?
Why is the SEC trying to delay a ruling on Ripple and XRP?
For the second well-known lawyer closely following the trial, the matter is clear. Jeremy Hogan wrote on Twitter that the SEC was “of course” asking for an extension of time. Because Hogan had also followed step by step how the SEC floundered in its evidence about XRP. The SEC wants to show that XRP should be classified as a security (“securities”) and therefore could not be sold without permission in 2013 and 2014. Ripple has managed to show how it had addressed this issue early on and therefore readjusted sales rules to be compliant with the law.
However, Hogan also takes issue with the SEC’s admission that it is already premature to enter the home stretch of the proceedings in May. In addition Hogan points by Twitter to another document of the Ripple defenders. There, it is suggested that the defense may have evidence of how the SEC internally thought about XRP early on and concluded Ripple’s cryptocurrency did not fall into the securities category.
With this information behind it, the discussion on Reddit allows for some speculation: Is the SEC trying to buy time to seek a settlement? Is the SEC driven by simply hurting XRP and Ripple through litigation delay?
Conclusion: SEC loses ground in XRP lawsuit against Ripple.
In 15 months, the crypto scene has seen many twists and turns in SEC vs. Ripple, and XRP’s price curve demonstrates that the market is not settling on a preliminary decision. However, the SEC, which is otherwise so sovereign and proud of its abundance of power, no longer presents a good picture in its evidence and litigation. Didn’t they expect a Ripple there that wants to fight out the trial and refuses to settle out of court? Meanwhile, Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse has once again emphasized that the proceedings are not just about Ripple and XRP, but that the verdict will set the trend for the crypto industry as a whole.
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