The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has opposed efforts by two firms, I-Remit and TapJets, to submit amici briefs to court in support of Ripple in the drawn-out $1.3bn XRP securities lawsuit.
The regulator has lambasted the movants for trying to offer evidence that is outside of the limitations of discovery rules and the court’s prior order.
SEC Objects To Firms Aiding Ripple Defense
Last week, Philippines-headquartered cross-border payments company I-Remit requested to participate as an amicus curiae in the SEC vs Ripple case that is nearing the two-year mark. I-Remit noted it has a vested interest in the outcome of the suit because it relies on Ripple’s on-demand liquidity (ODL) service, which utilizes the XRP cryptocurrency to facilitate cross-border settlements.
The status of “friend of the court” permits I-Remit to aid the court by providing information, expertise, or insight. The company claims it has deep knowledge of ODL and hopes to assist the court’s evaluation of the SEC’s assertions.
TapJets also filed an application for amicus curiae status. The private jet charter company aims to highlight the utility of XRP. It argued that XRP usage, which makes it possible for customers to speedily book flights outside the normal working hours of banks, is vital to its business operations.
In response, the SEC asserts that these two firms cannot clearly explain how Ripple being directed to register its XRP sales and distribution would hinder them from using the crypto. Moreover, the plaintiff does not see any valid reasons why Ripple could not have put forward the facts that were cited by I-Remit and TapJets.
Has Ripple Already Won The Battle With SEC?
The SEC lodged a formal complaint against Ripple and its current and former CEOs, Brad Garlinghouse and Chris Larsen, respectively, back in December 2020, claiming that Ripple’s sales of XRP constituted an investment contract and securities offering.
Besides the support for Ripple that has poured in, the San Francisco-based tech firm has also notched several procedural victories in the case. Most recently, a U.S. District Court judge overruled the SEC’s attempts to prevent Ripple from accessing emails pertaining to the speech by former SEC Corporation Finance Division Director William Hinman, where he said rival crypto, ethereum, was not a security.
Ripple believes these documents will bolster its case and prove that the SEC has picked two winners in the crypto industry — bitcoin and ether — while spurning the rest.
At stake in the Ripple, the suit is a criterion that could be applied to other crypto projects. If the company wins, it will be quite a setback for the SEC and its “regulation by enforcement” plan. More importantly, if the court rules in Ripple’s favour, XRP, which has largely been in the doldrums since the lawsuit was filed, stands a chance to explode to new all-time highs.