Prominent crypto lawyer Deaton accuses SEC of stonewalling in the ongoing Ripple Labs case as whistleblower group Empower Oversight files a complaint seeking transparency.
In a recent development in the ongoing legal battle between the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Ripple Labs, a prominent crypto lawyer, John E Deaton, has accused the SEC of stonewalling and hiding the truth.
Deaton, representing a group of XRP holders in the case against the SEC, took to Twitter to express his frustration with the regulatory body. He stated that the SEC leadership is corrupt and is not transparent in its dealings with Ripple Labs.
According to Deaton, the SEC has been withholding crucial documents and emails that are necessary for Ripple Labs to mount a strong defense in the multi-year legal battle. Notably, the lawyer expressed these statements following a recent move by the U.S. whistleblower and anti-corruption watchdog, Empower Oversight.
It is 💯 safe to say that the SEC is stonewalling because they are hiding the truth. I know that there are good people who work at the SEC, but the leadership is corrupt. Hard stop. Let the public see the emails and documents. Thank you @EMPOWR_us. It shouldn’t be this difficult. https://t.co/t5qYsOC6LW
— John E Deaton (@JohnEDeaton1) May 11, 2023
Advocacy Group Sues SEC
On May 11, 2023, Empower Oversight, a non-profit organization, filed a fresh complaint against the SEC in a District Court in the United States, seeking to force the regulator to comply with a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request previously filed by the body.
In December 2022, the organization filed the FOIA request to obtain information about conflicts of interest and selective enforcement by former high-level officials concerning cryptocurrencies.
Empower Oversight Sues SEC in D.C. Court for Documents in Crypto Conflicts Controversyhttps://t.co/PrK9jgFLJg#cryptotrading #crypto #Bitcoin $BTC $ETH $XRP
— Empower Oversight (@EMPOWR_us) May 11, 2023
In the recent complaint, Empower Oversight noted that it had submitted a detailed FOIA request to the SEC in August 2021, seeking all communications regarding cryptocurrencies between senior SEC officials and their former employers and related entities.
According to the organization, the request was made after it was discovered that former senior SEC official, William Hinman, received 9 million dollars in compensation from his former employer, Simpson Thacher, while helping guide the SEC’s enforcement decisions on cryptocurrencies.
Notably, Thacher was part of a group that promoted Ethereum (ETH), a proof-of-stake cryptocurrency that the former SEC chairman Hinman publicly declared was not a security. However, the current SEC leadership has described XRP as a security, resulting in protracted court cases.
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