Crypto Controversy: Ripple & SEC High-Stakes $103M Confrontation

The legal battle between the SEC and Ripple has been one of the most significant confrontations in the cryptocurrency world. Since 2020, the SEC has alleged that Ripple’s sale of XRP constituted an unregistered securities offering.

A pivotal court decision concluded that while XRP itself is not a security, Ripple’s sales to institutional investors did breach federal regulations. The conflict intensified when the SEC originally pursued a hefty $2 billion in penalties. However, the stakes shifted after Ripple signaled a readiness to settle for up to $10 million, prompting the SEC to reduce its demands.

The SEC is now demanding a $103 million penalty, arguing that such a sum is essential to “deter future misconduct in the crypto industry.” On June 13th, Ripple asked the judge overseeing its case with the SEC to cap the company’s penalties at “no more than $10 million.” This amount is significantly lower than the $876 million civil penalty the SEC has proposed. Ripple justified its request by referencing the recent $4.47 billion settlement between Terra and the SEC’s, which included only a $420 million civil penalty, as a benchmark for fairness.

In response, the SEC emphasized that Terraform Labs met three key conditions in their settlement: the company declared bankruptcy, agreed to return funds to investors, and dismissed the executives responsible for the alleged misconduct. The regulator argued that Ripple has not met any of these criteria and is “agreeing to nothing.”

SEC Demands $2 Billion Penalty

The commission is pursuing approximately $2 billion from Ripple, which includes a civil penalty of $876 million and an additional $876 million in disgorgement. Ripple is actively contesting this demand, advocating for a significantly reduced penalty.

The court has not yet issued a final ruling regarding the penalty, if any, that Ripple must pay. The cryptocurrency community is closely monitoring this case, as its outcome could establish a critical precedent for future regulatory measures and enforcement within the fast-changing digital asset landscape.

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Furthermore, the author’s views are for reference only and shall not constitute investment advice. Before purchasing, please ensure you fully understand and assess the products and associated risks.

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