Update on the XRP lawsuit: The SEC criticizes Ripple’s ‘overbroad’ blanket sealing request.

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Over the last few days, the SEC and Ripple Labs have been responding to each other’s motions and letters in rapid succession. The SEC has submitted its objection letter to Ripple’s request to seal its exhibits in the newest move in the ongoing XRP dispute.

The San Francisco-based blockchain corporation had previously sought that some of the documents attached to its letters be sealed, claiming that they included “confidential” and “private” company information. In response, the SEC labeled Ripple’s request “reflexive,” claiming that it violated public access rules.

However, Ripple was granted permission to “partially redact” its papers containing confidential commercial information in the first week of April.

Nonetheless, the regulatory authority has continued to delve into the firm’s private information and has filed a new move to force Ripple to submit a slew of evidence as well as the legal advice it got.

The SEC stated during the Meet and Confer on May 11th that it would not oppose Ripple’s motion to seal the two privilege logs and would only publicly file the redacted copies of many other documents. However, the regulatory authority underlined that only the sections of the exhibits on which it relied would be made public.

“The SEC seeks only to unseal the portions of the documents the SEC relies upon for its arguments, and those necessary to give context thereto, and does not oppose redacting the rest of the Remaining Exhibits.”

During the Meet and Confer, the SEC also urged Ripple to offer acceptable redactions. The agency said that Ripple filed its Motion to Seal instead of seeking to negotiate a resolution. Ripple’s blanket Motion to Seal was likewise refused by the regulatory authority. According to the SEC’s most recent letter, the blanket sealing request violates the assumption of public access to judicial papers.

“These exhibits show, among other things, Ripple receiving and sharing legal advice and attempting to inject confusion into the minds of market participants, and are thus instrumental to the SEC’s efforts to persuade the Court to grant the SEC’s Motion to Compel.”

The SEC further asserted that Ripple’s blanket sealing request is “inconsistent” and not “narrowly tailored,” as per the requirements.

“Documents may be sealed if specific, on the record findings are made demonstrating that closure is essential to preserve higher values and is narrowly tailored to serve that interest.”

The SEC noted in its letter that 500 individuals attended the 6 April call and 4,000 people attended the 30 April call, indicating a high level of “public interest” in the issue. The sealing of more material than is legally necessary, according to the SEC’s counsel, would limit the information available to the public. The letter ended with the words,

“… Ripple’s overboard sealing request would have the effect of allowing Ripple to pick and choose what information the public is allowed to see about the parties’ arguments and should be rejected.”

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