A member of the XRP community filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request back in early August 2022 regarding communications between the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and banking giant JP Morgan involving Ripple Lab and XRP. In a new update, Ashley Prosper shared that the request continues to be delayed.
Prosper is seeking disclosure of any SEC communications with JP Morgan about Ripple and/or XRP. The current response letter states that the SEC has recently received the search results and is now reviewing them.
Apparently, there are a “large” number of records that require confidential treatment. The agency’s email reads:
Based on our initial review of records, it appears that a large portion of the records will require that we engage in the CT Substantiation process, which involves records for which confidential treatment was requested at the time of their submission. Engaging in this type of consultation will add approximately 60 days to the review time.
Did JP Morgan Influence The SEC’s Lawsuit Against Ripple?
Prosper said he filed the FOIA request because “communications between the SEC and JP Morgan directly” led to the December 2020 lawsuit against the Ripple Labs company. It was prompted by an article on a blog called the “blue sky blog” that discussed CEO donations related to SEC enforcement.
“A very compelling read. Q: So how much does Jamie Dimon and JPM ‘donate’ to the SEC? (My next FOIA),” Prosper wrote at the time, further detailing that the lawsuit harmed thousands of XRP holders to the tune of billions of dollars.
The SEC’s communications are of great public interest, according to Prosper, as Judge Sarah Netburn and Judge Analisa Torres also noted in a different context. That’s why the XRP army member is demanding the information be released without charge so the public can better understand how private companies influence the SEC and its staff.
Until recently, Prosper assumed that the release of documents related to JP Morgan, Ripple, and XRP could occur in late March. Possibly because District Judge Analisa Torres has not yet issued a ruling, the documents appear to be protected under confidentiality.
A release appears to be 60 days away at the earliest, according to the latest response from the agency. By that time, Judge Torres might have already issued a ruling – at least that is the assumption of some lawyers from the XRP community, such as John E. Deaton and James Filan. Both are expecting a ruling to come by the end of the month.
However, the chances of success of the FOIA request are difficult to assess. Another XRP community member wrote that there is a trend with the SEC. They won’t release anything they don’t want to until they get sued and the court forces them to.
Remarkably, Ripple filed a FOIA request at the very beginning of the litigation. Additionally, in August 2021, the government watchdog group Empower Oversight filed an extensive FOIA request for access to internal SEC documents and records involving Jay Clayton, William Hinman, and Marc Berger for “possible conflicts of interest” during their tenure.
At press time, the XRP price was trading at $0.4957, still consolidating after the stellar rally from late March.
Featured image from Ryan, Swanson & Cleveland, PLLC, chart from TradingView.com
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