Ripple and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have jointly requested additional time to disclose the Hinman documents, raising speculation about a potential settlement in their ongoing legal battle.
In a Friday, May 19 letter to District Judge Analisa Torres, both parties argued that the voluminous nature of the materials and the necessary redactions necessitate more time. Notably, while the original deadline had been set for June 6 2023, by the court, the parties sought a one-week extension to June 13.
This development follows a recent decision by Judge Torres to deny the SEC’s motion to seal the Hinman documents earlier this week. On May 16, Judge Torres ruled that the documents were judicial and subject to a strong presumption of public access. The decision was welcomed by Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse, who called it “another win for transparency.”
The documents in question are tied to a controversial 2018 speech by Bill Hinman, a former SEC director, where he stated that he did not consider Bitcoin or Ethereum as securities. Ripple has sought access to these documents, believing they support their argument that XRP should not be classified as a security.
The SEC had previously claimed that Hinman’s speech represented his personal views rather than the Commission’s policy, and thus the documents should be withheld from public scrutiny. However, the recent ruling by Judge Torres has brought them into the public domain. This decision marks another setback for the SEC’s attempt to seal these documents, as a judge had previously ruled against their efforts last year.
A Settlement in the Horizon?
Meanwhile, following this week’s events, the possibility of public access to these documents has added fuel to the speculation about a potential settlement between Ripple and the SEC.
“Whiff of settlement talks – since this is a joint filing. The SEC does not want the Kraken released here… Still feels most like a mutually beneficial delay to work on settlement,” tweeted long-term Ripple supporter Hugh Breslin.
“My thoughts exactly!” another Ripple proponent wrote, replying to Breslin.
That said, it is important to note that the outcome of this high-profile lawsuit holds significant implications for the regulation of digital assets, not only in the United States but also globally. This is because it has the potential to provide clarity on the classification of cryptocurrencies and shape future regulatory frameworks.
That said, as the Parties await a decision from Judge Torres regarding the requested extension, the Ripple adherents await eagerly as the decision may provide crucial insights into the SEC’s stance on digital assets and the future of Ripple’s XRP.