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Ripple v. SEC case update as of August 21, 2023

Ripple v. SEC case update as of August 21, 2023

Despite Ripple scoring a major win in the court case against the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as Judge Analisa Torres ruled that its sales of the XRP token did not constitute securities sales, the blockchain company is still waiting for the final conclusion of the court battle.

In the meantime, the securities regulator has made a move toward making an early appeal, as it filed a motion to certify an interlocutory appeal, according to the court documents shared by a defense attorney and popular commentator on the case, James K. Filan, on August 18.

Grounds for appeal

Specifically, the motion for appeal pertains to two parts of the Judge’s summary judgment, which “involve controlling questions of law as to which there are substantial grounds for difference of opinion, and obtaining an appellate ruling on these issues now may materially advance the ultimate termination of this litigation.”

“(1) the ruling (…) that Defendants’ ‘Programmatic’ offers and sales of XRP over crypto asset trading platforms could not lead investors to reasonably expect profits from the efforts of others; and (2) the ruling that Ripple’s ‘Other Distributions’ of XRP as a ‘form of payment for services’ was legally insufficient to constitute an ‘investment of money’ under SEC v. Howey.”

Back and forth between Ripple and SEC

As a reminder, Ripple had earlier filed its opposition to the anticipated motion for leave to file the expedited appeal, asking the Judge to prevent the regulator from appealing due to lacking a clear legal question other than the (wrongful) application of the Howey facts, while Ripple’s legal team also presented other cases which, in its view, demonstrate that the securities watchdog is in the wrong.

However, the Judge later approved the SEC’s request and set a briefing schedule for the agency to file a motion for leave to file an interlocutory appeal as well as setting September 1 for the defendants’ opposition, although Filan pointed out that this did not mean constitute an authorization of an interlocutory appeal, but simply permission for the SEC to request it.

Interestingly, the SEC appears to accept that cryptocurrencies themselves are not inherently securities and is seemingly not seeking to appeal this part of the ruling, as noted by Fox Business journalist Eleanor Terrett in her social media post on X (formerly Twitter) published on August 18.

Meanwhile, XRP, the token at the center of the legal battle, was at press time changing hands at the price of $0.521, down 0.22% in the last 24 hours, as well as recording a decline of 17% across the previous seven days and losing 32.55% on its monthly chart, as per the latest data seen by Finbold on August 21.

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