Ripple Labs has dealt the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) another setback in their ongoing legal battle. District Court Judge Analisa Torres dismissed the SEC’s interlocutory appeal motion. She cited the regulator’s failure to demonstrate “controlling questions of law” and “substantial grounds for differences of opinion.”
Does this Mark the End of the Litigation?
Although this represents a setback for the SEC, it doesn’t signify the conclusion of the legal proceedings. They have scheduled a trial date for April 23, 2024, to investigate the unresolved aspects of the case further.
In the XRP community, Jeremy Hogan, a highly regarded lawyer, highlighted the impact of this recent ruling, emphasizing, “The SEC’s motion for interlocutory appeal DENIED. Which means the case either goes to trial in April, or goes away. AND, this Order allowed the Judge to explain parts of her ruling even better, making appeal that much harder for the SEC to win.”
Bill Morgan shared these sentiments, expressing his satisfaction with the decision: “Great news. SEC smashed. No interlocutory appeal. Trial now confirmed for 23 April 2024.”
Upcoming Dates For Ripple and SEC
Looking ahead to potential timelines, attorney Fred Rispoli outlined a speculative roadmap for the litigation. He highlighted the April 2024 trial date and suggested extending it for eight weeks or more. Rispoli also emphasized the significance of upcoming pre-trial motions anticipated for December 2023, followed by expected rulings in early 2024.
If the case proceeds to the 2nd Circuit, the lawyer projected it would take “about a year to decide the case,” with a ruling expected around February 2026. He further noted that a Supreme Court decision, assuming it accepts the review, would likely occur in February 2027 or later. In summary, XRP’s non-security status, from a judicial perspective, will remain unchanged until at least February 2026.
Also, Scott Chamberlain, a former lawyer and co-founder of Evernode XRPL, offered his insights on the broader implications of the recent court decision.
Are the Parties Ready?
In August, Judge Torres ordered a jury trial involving Ripple Labs, CEO Brad Garlinghouse, and co-founder Chris Larsen. Initially, this trial was slated between April 1 and June 30, 2024. However, due to scheduling conflicts, the trial date has been rescheduled to April 23, 2024.
Counsel for Garlinghouse and Larsen reported their unavailability from April 1-14, 2024. Ripple Labs expressed its readiness for a trial at any point in the second quarter of 2024. In contrast, the SEC indicated its unavailability on several dates in April and May.
Critical trial deadlines have been established. All parties must submit motions by December 4, 2023, with oppositions due by December 18, 2023. December 4 also serves as the cutoff for all mandatory pre-trial filings. This encompasses their proposed joint pre-trial order, requests for a charge, verdict form, and voir dire questions.
At the time of this report, the XRP price sits at $0.5893 and has shown a modest reaction to Ripple’s victory, with a 3% increase since the announcement.