Judge reaffirms order SEC must produce documents on Bitcoin, Ether and XRP in Ripple case

  • Ripple's victory granted the firm access to the SEC's documents on the three leading cryptocurrencies.
  • The regulatory agency recently denied the possession of these documents.
  • The judge further clarified and reaffirmed the order for the securities regulator to hand over discussions on Bitcoin, Ether and XRP.

Judge Sarah Netburn has restated that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) must produce documents related to Bitcoin, Ether, and XRP amid the ongoing legal battle with Ripple Labs.

Critical documents must be searched and produced

The SEC’s ongoing legal case against the creators of the XRP cryptocurrency, Ripple Labs and its executives, alleges that the token was sold as a security. The blockchain firm failed to submit relevant documents to abide by the initial public offering process with the securities regulator, which allegedly violates securities laws.

The regulatory body lost several pretrial motions in the past few months, including Ripple’s victory in forcing the SEC to reveal documents related to Bitcoin, Ether and XRP. Despite Judge Netburn’s ruling to disclose critical records, she excluded the discovery of internal communications at the SEC. 

The SEC’s discussion on the top cryptocurrencies is critical to Ripple’s defense, as the regulator has previously clarified Bitcoin and Ethereum as not being securities. If XRP were also discussed along with the two largest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, it would further make Ripple’s case.

The agency, however, recently responded by stating that it does not possess any material relating to the leading cryptocurrencies. 

Judge Netburn has now reaffirmed the order that the SEC must produce documents related to the three cryptocurrencies and hand them over. Subject to privilege assertion, the regulatory agency must produce communications with third parties, including external agencies and market participants. The official document read:

Intra-agency memoranda or formal position papers discussing Bitcoin, Ethereum and XRP must be searched for and produced subject to a privilege assertion. Examples of such documents include Division reports, final reports of internal working groups, or formal position papers submitted to the Commissioners.

Despite Ripple and its executives filing a motion to dismiss the case, the legal battle continues. The SEC even hired two senior trial lawyers from Chicago with 18 and 25 years of respective experience to assist with the case. Attorney Jeremy Hogan suggested that the agency is “calling in the reinforcements” and that Ripple will be “fighting back hard.”

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