In a recent interview Stuart Alderoty, Ripple’s Chief Legal Officer, voiced his opinions about the timing of the lawsuit and the company’s dedication to defending the case in December 2020, when Ripple Labs was sued by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) right before Christmas. Ripple made it clear that they were battling not only for themselves but also for the whole crypto industry in the United States, despite the industry’s early scepticism.
Alderoty said: “We said from day one that we were going to defend this case not only on our own behalf, but we were going to defend this case on behalf of the entire crypto industry in the United States. […] Everyone understands how important this fight is.”
As the case drags on, Alderoty feels that Ripple’s position has been validated and that others broadly supported and believed in their commitment to fighting the case. It has been acknowledged that Ripple’s determination to stand up to the SEC represents a significant victory for the whole cryptocurrency sector.
Mr. Alderoty conceded that Ripple benefited in certain ways by being sued by the SEC at that specific time. Others in the sector who are just starting to deal with litigation from the SEC are finding inspiration in Ripple’s defences and story as they draw closer to the conclusion of their legal journey.
“And in many ways, Ripple in a perverse way, we’ve actually been benefited by the SEC suing us when they did because we’re at the end of our journey and others at the beginning of their litigation journey with the SEC,” Alderoty said.
To some extent, Ripple’s experiences have prepared the ground and given those in a similar circumstance a blueprint.
Alderoty added: “But I think if you look at the defenses and the narrative around what some of the actors who are now on the wrong side with the SEC, they are reading from the Ripple playbook and that is perfectly fine with us.”
The remarks follow the much-anticipated publication of the Hinman documents. The documents associated with the 2018 Hinman speech, which provided guidelines for deciding whether a token qualifies as a security, were recently unsealed. Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse stated days after the release that he thinks the SEC’s activities show a deliberate effort to exercise control through enforcement.
Garlinghouse emphasized that there is still more work to achieve regulatory clarity for the industry even though the SEC’s case against Ripple is about to conclude. Alderoty’s comments, therefore, highlight both the frustrations and the revelations the team at Ripple have been through the past years in the lawsuit with the SEC.