Crypto Firms Urge SEC to Prioritize New Rules on Digital Assets

Coinbase Joins Ripple to Request SEC Rules on Securities

  • Coinbase has joined Ripple, Paxos and other crypto firms in filing an amicus brief in the SEC v. Wahi case asking the Court to dismiss securities fraud charges.
  • The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Justice filed civil and criminal charges against Ishan Wahi, a former manager at Coinbase Global, for insider trading.
  • Coinbase argued that the SEC is using old securities rules on new technology and should focus on setting proper rules related to digital assets.

SEC vs. Wahi Case Overview

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) have brought civil and criminal charges against Ishan Wahi, a former manager in the assets and investing products group at Coinbase Global, his brother Nikhil Whai, as well as their friend Sameer Ramani for engaging in insider trading. The reports claim that Ishan had first-hand knowledge of which assets Coinbase planned to support before making an official announcement on Twitter. In June 2021 and April 2022, Ishan allegedly tipped this non-public information concerning the timing and content of various listings to Nikhil, Ramani or both of them. Subsequently, Ishan has pleaded guilty to these charges.

Amicus Brief Filed by Coinbase

In response to this lawsuit, Coinbase has filed an amicus brief backing dismissal of this misguided lawsuit claiming that it violates existing securities laws on digital assets which are not applicable here. According to Paul Grewal, Chief Legal Officer at Coinbase: “We don’t list securities but we would like to; however, we need some clarity from the Agency regarding our position so we petitioned them last year with 50 questions that need answering in order for us to do so” . Furthermore, The Blockchain Association along with Chamber Digital Commerce also filed a separate amicus brief requesting dismissal of this lawsuit due lack of application of existing securities regulations on digital assets/currencies such as Bitcoin or Ethereum etc..

Coinbase Argues For New Regulations

Coinbase joins Ripple by arguing that SEC should prioritize rules guidance related to securities instead of bringing some misguided securities lawsuit against individuals based on old regulations which don’t apply any longer given cryptocurrency landscape today is much more different than it was few years ago when these regulations were initially drafted/established . It is worth noting that cryptocurrency industry has come a long way since its inception while government still struggles to keep up with pace as regulators try figure out how best handle/approach cryptocurrencies without stifling innovation & growth within space itself .


Ultimately , both companies hope that by filing these briefs , court will dismiss case allowing SEC focus their attention creating new set rules & regulations tailored specifically towards cryptocurrencies rather than relying upon outdated ones . This could potentially pave way for mainstream adoption cryptocurrencies giving investors greater confidence when considering investing into such asset class .