US SEC Leverages Ripple XRP Case in Binance Lawsuit

On June 17, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) drew attention to a recent ruling in the Ripple class action lawsuit. This move highlights differences in judicial opinions on whether XRP, Ripple’s cryptocurrency, is considered a security. The SEC aims to use this ruling in its lawsuit against Binance.

SEC’s Legal Maneuver

The SEC filed a document in the District Court of Columbia, presenting the Ripple class action lawsuit as supplemental authority. The SEC argues that the judge’s opinion in the Ripple case is relevant for the court’s decision in the lawsuit against Binance, Binance.US, and former CEO Changpeng Zhao. The Binance lawsuit is nearing the end of the discovery and deposition phase, with most discovery disputes resolved. The court is currently considering several motions, including a joint motion to dismiss the lawsuit.

Ripple Case Overview

In the Ripple case, Judge Hamilton ruled mostly in favor of Ripple, dismissing many of the plaintiff’s arguments about securities violations. However, the trial will continue regarding misleading statements made by Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse about XRP sales. Garlinghouse defended himself in a recent statement, asserting that he stands by his previous comments and is eager to clarify them during the trial. He noted that the sole plaintiff, who owns a few hundred XRP, didn’t buy them directly from Ripple and couldn’t confirm if he heard Garlinghouse’s statements before trading.

Judicial Discrepancies

Judge Hamilton’s ruling deviated from the decision of a Southern District of New York (SDNY) judge, who ruled that XRP’s programmatic sales are not securities. This has sparked debate within the XRP community. Judge Hamilton’s ruling on the third prong of the Howey test was more objective. He mentioned that “programmatic buyers may have purchased XRP with the expectation of profits from Ripple’s efforts.”

SEC’s Focus on Misleading Statements

The SEC also highlighted Garlinghouse’s misleading statements regarding XRP. The biggest concern for Ripple is that the SEC might use this California case in the Second Circuit to appeal Judge Torres’ summary judgment on XRP. For this to happen, the court must first decide whether XRP sales were securities.

Implications for Binance

The SEC’s strategy involves leveraging the Ripple case to strengthen its position in the Binance lawsuit. By pointing out the differing judicial opinions, the SEC aims to influence the court’s decision regarding Binance. This approach underscores the complexity and ongoing evolution of regulatory perspectives on cryptocurrencies.

Market Reactions and Legal Developments

The Ripple case has significant implications for the broader cryptocurrency market. The differing judicial opinions highlight the uncertainties and legal challenges faced by the crypto industry. The SEC’s actions suggest a continued regulatory push to clarify and enforce securities laws in the crypto space. As the Binance lawsuit progresses, the outcomes could set important precedents for future regulatory actions and legal interpretations.


The SEC’s recent legal move underscores the ongoing legal complexities surrounding cryptocurrencies. By leveraging the Ripple class action lawsuit in its case against Binance, the SEC seeks to influence judicial opinions and enforce securities regulations more effectively. As the legal battles unfold, the cryptocurrency community and market participants will be closely watching for outcomes that could shape the future of digital assets regulation.

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