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Ripple and SEC seek extension for unsealing Hinman documents

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On May 19, James Filan, a defense attorney and ex-federal prosecutor who has been closely monitoring the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) vs. Ripple case for the past few years, shared an update regarding the potential unsealing of the Hinman documents for public access.

According to a tweet, the SEC and Ripple Labs have filed a “Joint Letter for one week extension, until June 13, 2023, to file public, [redacted] versions of cross-motions for summary judgment and accompanying exhibits, which includes the Hinman materials.” 

The Hinman documents pertain to a speech given in 2018 by former director of the SEC’s corporation finance division Bill Hinman. During the speech, Hinman expressed the view that Ether (ETH), should not be classified as a security. These documents encompass the SEC’s internal conversations and deliberations surrounding this particular speech.

Some members of the crypto community find the joint petition to be “weird.” A lawyer, Fred Rispoli, with the Twitter handle @freddyriz tweeted in response to Filan’s announcement; “This is weird to me. The parties already had detailed discussions on these redactions the first time around. Could be nothing more than what’s written but it’s just…odd. This gives me the feeling that something has changed and there is a scramble going on behind the scenes.”

Related: Breaking: Court victory for Ripple as judge denies SEC motion to seal Hinman docs

On May 18, CEO of Ripple Brad Garlinghouse stated in an interview with CNBC that the ambiguous regulations in the United States are likely to drive more cryptocurrency companies to relocate outside the country. Ripple itself is actively seeking to hire and make investments abroad as a result of these regulatory uncertainties.

Garlinghouse’s comments to CNBC come days after Ripple acquired Swiss blockchain custody firm Metaco for $250M. The acquisition is set to allow Ripple to expand its enterprise services to include custody, issuance and settlement of tokenized assets. Ripple expects the institutional crypto-custody market to reach $10 trillion by 2030, as many financial leaders plan to adopt crypto-custody solutions in the next few years. 

Magazine: Crypto regulation — Does SEC Chair Gary Gensler have the final say?