The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Ripple have made a joint request to extend the deadline for unsealing internal deliberations related to a speech given by former SEC director, William Hinman. On Friday, both parties filed a request to delay the filing of various exhibits, including Hinman documents. The District Judge Analisa Torres of the US District Court for the Southern District of New York granted the motion on the same day, setting a new deadline on June 13th. The Hinman documents consist primarily of a speech delivered by Hinman in June 2018, in which he states that Ethereum’s native token, Ether, is not a security.
In December of the previous year, the SEC requested a seal of internal communication, such as emails, text messages, and expert reports, following Hinman’s speech in the Ripple case. The SEC argued that the public’s right to access these documents was outweighed by its mission and its lack of relevance to the court’s summary judgment decision.
However, earlier this week, Judge Torres denied the SEC’s motion to seal the records, asserting that they were judicial documents and should be subject to a presumption of public access. She also noted that Hinman’s Speech documents could influence the court’s ruling on the motion.
The Ripple-SEC case has significant implications for the regulation and classification of cryptocurrencies, beyond Ripple and XRP. The court’s decision could establish a precedent for the regulation of other cryptocurrencies in the future. If XRP is deemed a security, it could result in a similar classification for other cryptocurrencies, subjecting them to strict securities regulations. Conversely, if XRP is not classified as a security, it may exempt other cryptocurrencies with characteristics similar those to of securities regulations.
The outcome of the Ripple-SEC case will shape the operation and regulation of cryptocurrency companies in the industry. It is worth noting that the SEC has also initiated legal action against other crypto companies, including Kraken and Bittrex (crypto exchanges) and Nexo (crypto lending platform), and has threatened Coinbase with lawsuits.