Ripple’s “biggest victory” triggers XRP Holders’ request for unprivileged SEC meetings

Rick Steves

“The biggest victory for Ripple and XRPHolders, from Judge Netburn’s recent decision, isn’t necessarily the email with the Draft version of the Hinman speech.”

John Deaton, the attorney representing the more than 50,000 XRP Holders which have been granted Amicus Curiae status in the SEC v. Ripple lawsuit, has plans to use that status to file a FOIA request in regard to SEC documents Judge Sarah Netburn has recently ruled not to be protected by deliberative process privilege (DPP).

The lawyer has gone to Twitter to explain in what way the ruling, which was reported as being a mixed outcome for Ripple, could in fact be a resounding victory for Ripple.

Biggest victory for Ripple are notes from meetings

“The biggest victory for Ripple and XRPHolders, from Judge Netburn’s recent decision, isn’t necessarily the email with the Draft version of the Hinman speech. The most significant victory could prove to be the notes from meetings with 3rd parties not associated w/ Ripple.”

Deaton further explained those third parties are very likely to be Ethereum’s Joseph Lybin and executive(s) from ConsenSys, who met with Hinman and others, as well as VC Working Group (a member of the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance).

“These notes are no doubt from the above meetings. Judge Netburn ruled the SEC can still invoke attorney client privilege regarding the personal notes Memo by Valerie Szczepanik and others, but if the notes contain statements made by the people at the meetings – its NOT privileged.”

In order to ascertain what happened in those meeting, whether XRP, Ether, and BTC were mentioned and/or distinguished, John Deaton has decided XRP Holders will be filing a new FOIA request based on Judge Netburn’s finding the meeting its not covered by DPP.

“Consequential nature of the litigation supports disclosure”

In the recently court ruling, Judge Sarah Netburn found that the precedent-setting case and massive public interest are reason enough to support disclosure of many of the documents the SEC tried to keep protected by DPP.

In “Seriousness of Litigation and Issues Involved”, the Court states that it has expressly found that “this case is unique, that the nature of the case involves significant policy decisions in our markets and that the amount in controversy also is substantial and that the public’s interest in
resolution of this case is also quite significant. Some of the documents at issue go to the heart of the public’s interest in the case.”

“The Court agrees with Defendants that the consequential nature of the litigation supports disclosure. As discussed below, however, the significance of the issues in this case cuts both ways: SEC employees need to be able to deliberate unsettled law in an emerging market without fearing that their communications will be subject to public scrutiny. On balance, this factor therefore weighs slightly—but not strongly—in favor of disclosure”

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