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XRP Tokens Caught in Crypto Oversight Crosshairs: SEC Roundup

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Welcome to SEC Roundup, a bimonthly video series by Paul Hastings partners and former Securities and Exchange Commission senior trial counsels Nick Morgan and Tom Zaccaro exploring current SEC topics with thought leaders and industry experts.

In this episode, Morgan and Zaccaro talk with John Deaton, managing partner of the Deaton Law Firm and counsel to more than 70,000 XRP token holders, about the SEC’s stance in the SEC v. Ripple lawsuit, in which the SEC maintains that XRP tokens are securities.

“The SEC has taken this theory that XRP itself, the underlying token, is a security,” Deaton said.

Deaton has filed amicus, or friend of the court, briefs in the Ripple case, brought in December 2020.

In that case, the SEC alleges that Ripple’s sales of a digital asset (token) called XRP beginning in 2013 were unregistered securities offerings.

Both sides in the Ripple case “are about to file summary judgment motions that will address the central issue in the case: Are XRP tokens securities (or, to put it slightly differently, was Ripple’s sale of XRP tokens an unregistered offering of securities)?” Morgan explains.

“Everyone with any interest in SEC/crypto issues is waiting to see how this [Ripple case] turns out, because the court’s answer may determine the limits of the SEC’s jurisdiction in this space,” Morgan added.

See the video above for the discussion with Deaton.


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