BREAKING: Ripple Challenges SEC’s Attorney-Client Privilege Claims Over William Hinman’s Documents

2022-05-14 13:5251920

Source: The Crypto Basic

Ripple is still insisting that the SEC should be compelled to surrender the documents.


Popular blockchain company Ripple has filed its much-anticipated response to the Securities and Exchange Commission’s April 29, 2022 assertion that William Hinman’s 2018 speech is protected by the attorney-client privilege.

Ripple, which had a deadline to file its response to the SEC’s recent claim on April 13, 2022, made sure it exhausted every minute preparing what it termed the perfect reply to the Securities and Exchange Commission’s recent move to protect the Hinman’s documents from being tendered as evidence that XRP is not a security.

Ripple Builds Its Argument

Defendants noted that the SEC had constantly fought to protect Hinman’s documents for several reasons, including on the basis of Deliberative Process Privilege (DPP).

Despite the court’s rejection, the SEC still sought a new reason to shield the agency from surrendering Hinman’s documents to Ripple.

This time, however, the SEC claimed that the documents are protected by attorney-client privilege because Hinman shared the drafted speech with the agency’s lawyers.

SEC’s Recent Claim Is Wrong for 4 Reasons

Ripple noted that the SEC’s recent claim over Hinman’s 2018 documents is wrong for four reasons.

According to the blockchain company, the fact that Hinman sought input from his colleagues in his personal capacity at the time does not mean the speech is protected by attorney-client privilege, as proven in the Second Circuit law.

Secondly, Ripple argued that Hinman being entitled to receive legal advice from his colleagues about his personal opinion does not in any way fall within the scope of the attorney-client relationship.

Furthermore, Ripple noted that the main subject of the matter does not involve any confidential information concerning the SEC that would require the speech to be protected by the attorney-client privilege.

Ripple added that even if the SEC can establish elements of attorney-client privilege in a bid to keep the documents protected, the agency would identify a privileged claim that it lacks standing to assert because the privilege would belong to Hinman.

“If the Court finds an attorney-client relationship between Mr. Hinman and the SEC staff with respect to comments on a draft speech given in his personal capacity, Defendants request that the Court review the remaining documents in camera to determine whether they include legal advice or confidential information protected by the privilege,” Ripple concluded.

SEC to Respond In 5 Days

With the blockchain company’s response to the SEC’s attorney-client claim over Hinman’s documents, the agency, which recently had its request to also respond to Ripple’s request whenever it is tendered, is now due to file its own response on April 18, 2022.

Meanwhile, attorney Jeremy Hogan, a partner at Hogan & Hogan law firm, has reacted to the new development, saying that it is odd that Hinman would receive legal advice from SEC’s lawyer for his personal opinion.

Solomon continues to amaze.

He takes the finding that the speech was Hinman's personal opinion and shoves it down their throats pretty hard. The SEC really messed that up.

How can Hinman receive legal advice from SEC lawyers for a personal opinion? Hmmm…

BUT… 1/2 https://t.co/IbzZflbKxn pic.twitter.com/5WfRgqXYaw

— Jeremy Hogan (@attorneyjeremy1) May 14, 2022

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