Ripple”s reflexive appeal to lock records violates public access principles: SEC argues

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A important advancement has arisen in the continuing litigation between the United States Stock and Exchange Commission and San Francisco-based Ripple Laboratories. More specifically, the plaintiffs have now written to Ripple, requesting that all documents attached to the company’s communications with the court be sealed.

A major move has occurred in the pending litigation brought by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission against San Francisco-based Ripple Labs. More precisely, the plaintiffs have now written to Ripple, asking that any of the papers attached to the company’s correspondence to the court be kept sealed.

The blockchain company claimed at the time that the aforementioned records “contain Ripple’s classified, private sector knowledge, and the presumption of public access to documents filed exclusively in connection with discovery disputes is minimal.” In reality, Counsel Andrew Ceresney stated in a letter to Judge Netburn that the records in question are not judicial documents under statute, and even if viewed as such, “any weight given to the presumption of access must be minimal.”

However, the SEC feels otherwise, with the same sentiment highlighted by Jorge Tenreiro’s plea to the court. In a letter dated 30 March, Tenreiro claimed,

“The SEC opposes Ripple’s Motion only insofar as it seeks to redact the material cited in the pending discovery disputes between the parties, but does not oppose redacting the remaining portions of the materials at issue.”

According to the regulatory body, Ripple, not the SEC, demands unilateral authority over what the public does and should not be able to reach. Indeed, the SEC alleges that Ripple selectively revealed the contents or the whole of a legal memo on several occasions, “in the hopes of promoting its won commercial purposes.”

“Ripple cannot selectively disclose otherwise privileged materials to members of the public and then claim in Court that disclosure of these materials would harm Ripple’s interests.”

Tenreiro argued that such a “reflexive request” is “fundamentally at odds with public access standards and the required limited tailoring of sealing requests.”

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The SEC’s counsel concluded the above letter by implying that Ripple’s assertions of being a “transparent performer” are contradictory, with Tenreiro adding,

“Ripple wishes to continue obscuring critical facts relevant to this case from its investors remains troubling and highlights the need for the investor-protector disclosure requirements…”

 

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