Ripple finally gets access to ex-SEC official Hinman’s docs

Lavina Daryanani
Source: VOI

Bill Hinman’s speech has been one of the most critical contentions around which the ongoing legal tussle between the SEC and Ripple has been resting. The former Director of the regulatory body’s Division of Corporation Finance made a speech in 2018 at the Yahoo Markets Summit. Back then, he declared Ethereum’s native token ETH not to be a security. Ripple clung to the speech, for it indirectly affirmed that XRP—like ETH—ain’t security, for it exists on an open, decentralized, permissionless blockchain ledger.

Ripple had been seeking the documents relating to the speech for a reasonably long time, but the SEC—on its part—had repeatedly opposed producing them citing reasons like the breach of attorney-client privilege. In mid-July, the judge quashed the agency’s claims and ruled that “the documents must be produced.

Nevertheless, the SEC opposed the judge’s ruling and had “respectfully” requested permission to file a 30-page opening brief and a 10-page reply brief in support of why it does not want to comply with the disclosure order.

However, post the latest court order, the Hinman documents have finally been turned over to Ripple.

Ripple’s fight was ‘worth’ it

Announcing the same, Ripple’s General Counsel Stuart Alderoty revealed that the documents—containing internal SEC emails and drafts of his 2018 speech—have been received after a waiting period of over 18 months and 6 court orders later. Even though the documents remain confidential for now, Alderoty asserted that “it was well worth the fight to get them.” He added,

I always felt bad about the SEC’s tactics, and I feel even worse about them now.

Crypto Law founder John E Deaton, on the other hand, went on to exclaim that “truth can be hid for only so long.”

Ripple CEO—and one of the defendants in the case—went on to ask people not to believe the SEC and its claims of how it cares about disclosure, transparency, and clarity. He claimed that when the truth comes out, the “shamefulness” of the agency’s behavior will shock everyone.

Despite such a big positive development, XRP—surprisingly— did not react on the price front. After noting a 2.77% decline on the daily, the sixth largest crypto was trading at $0.44 at press time on Friday.