SEC v. Ripple: Memos “overall favorable to Ripple and the Individual Defendants”, says expert

Attorney James K. Filan has shared his first impressions on the legal memos, saying they are overall favorable to Ripple as it shows they were not reckless. The documents suggest the opposite: Ripple was being careful.

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The court ordered the unsealing of much-awaited legal memos on XRP by law firm Perkins Coie LLP. The documents were requested by former Ripple chief executive Chris Larsen and delivered in February 2012 and October 2012.

 

James K. Filan, a Connecticut-based attorney that has been following the SEC v. Ripple case, has shared his first impressions on the legal memos.

“Overall favorable to Ripple and the Individual Defendants. Both memos are from Perkins Coie. The first memo was prepared in February 2012 and sent to Jed McCaleb and Jesse Powell. It says that if NewCoin is sold in what now would look like an ICO (I didn’t see the term ICO used), it would be likely that it would be considered a security. But Ripple then revised its business plan and went back to Perkins Coie, which issued a second memo in October 2012. This second memo was sent to Chris Larsen and Jed McCaleb”, he said.

“The October memo was more positive and while it said that there was a “small” risk that the SEC could disagree, Perkins Coie concluded that Ripple Credits should not be considered securities. The memo also suggested steps Ripple could take to minimize the risk that the SEC would disagree with Perkins Coie. The memos cover the full landscape of legal issues (not just the issue of securities) and I think show how careful Ripple was trying to be. Also, this was 5 years before the SEC really even started talking about digital tokens”.

“It seems to me that Ripple was being very proactive, which is very important. There certainly is nothing in these memos that suggests that Ripple was being reckless or ignored any substantial risks. In fact, the memos suggest the opposite – that Ripple was being careful”. 

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