Ripple’s Alderoty questions SEC extension request, Mr. Hogan says Judge will “split the baby”

As the lawsuit is again at risk of extending deadlines potentially for summary judgment, Mr. Hogan was clear that the SEC v Ripple has an end in sight.

The SEC has requested the court to extend the expert rebuttal report deadline to November 12, 2021, and the expert discovery deadline from November 12, 2021, to January 14, 2022.

The agency says the parties need sufficient time to prepare rebuttal reports and depose a minimum of 14 expert witnesses.

The plaintiff added that Ripple consents to an extension of the rebuttal report deadline until November 12, but opposes the January 14 deposition deadline.

Ripple’s General Counsel Stuart Alderoty commented on the SEC request as something quite unusual. “Every litigator will tell you it’s always the defendant – never the plaintiff – asking to delay proceedings. Why would any plaintiff, let alone one with unlimited resources, play the delay card?”

According to the SEC, Ripple intends to file its opposition to this letter motion on October 18, 2021. The SEC offered a compromise that expert discovery be completed by December 22, but Ripple also rejected that offer.

It seems that the blockchain firm believes that such an extension would disrupt the briefing schedule for summary judgment motion(s), which would likely affect the end of the lawsuit.

The XRP community has quickly responded to the SEC’s request and Twitter user @XRPMoonOrBust pointed to Judge Analisa Torres’ order denying the XRP Holders’ motion to intervene (while granting the Amicus Curiae status).

The ruling was on the grounds that “discovery in this action has already been extended… and the Court is not inclined to permit further delay by granting intervention and prolonging discovery…”

Jeremy Hogan, an XRP-friendly lawyer, has commented on the request as well: “What’s clear from this motion to extend discovery out 2 more months is that the SEC filed this $1.4 Billion dollar lawsuit without setting aside the resources to prosecute it. If the judge grants it, the main parts of the case won’t be decided until March-May of ’22!”

“My instinct, without having read Ripple’s reply, is that the judge splits the baby and provides an additional month to expert discovery. Judges never want an appellate court to hear lack of “due process” arguments on a case”, he continued.

As the lawsuit is again at risk of extending deadlines potentially for summary judgment, Mr. Hogan was clear that the SEC v. Ripple is likely to end in the first half of 2022, summer at the latest.

“The case will be over by summer at the latest. An appeal could take 9-12 months to be decided but while the appeal is going on, the trial judge’s ruling is “the law”.”

The SEC wants the extension because expert discovery has commenced with an incomplete factual record, and the case is even less ready for summary judgment motions.

“First, on September 1, 2021, Magistrate Judge Netburn granted the SEC’s motion to compel Ripple to produce certain instant messages among its employees, but Ripple has not completed its production of responsive documents and has not provided any timetable by which it will be complete.

“Second, the parties have four discovery motions currently pending before Magistrate Judge Netburn: (i) Defendants’ motion to pierce the SEC’s deliberative process privilege and other privileges as to many of the SEC’s internal communications and communications with other law enforcement agencies (which will not be fully
briefed until October 22, 2021); (ii) the SEC’s motion for a protective order relieving it from answering over 29,000 requests for admission that Defendants served on the SEC in the last six hours of fact discovery; (iii) Ripple’s and Larsen’s motion to compel further responses to certain interrogatories; and (iv) the SEC’s motion to compel Ripple to conduct a reasonable search for and produce certain video recordings of internal staff meetings involving Individual Defendants and key executives.

The plaintiff added that if Magistrate Judge Netburn grants any of the pending motions to compel, at minimum, the parties would need additional time to review and produce the documents at issue.


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