Crypto attorney calls on public to form amicus curiae in Coinbase, Binance suits
Attorney John Deaton is a rallying grassroots response to recent SEC enforcement actions that he claims have harmed investors.
John Deaton, managing partner at Deaton Law Firm, has called on Binance and Coinbase users to contribute to an amicus brief to submit to the court handling their cases.
Amicus curiae is Latin for friend of the court. It refers to a person or group who is not the plaintiff or defendant but has a major interest in proceedings. This person or group can influence legal outcomes by submitting a written argument, called an “amicus brief,” expressing its opinion to the court.
Deaton is best known for representing 75,000 XRP holders in the ongoing SEC vs. Ripple case. He also instigated similar actions in support of Ethereum holders against New York Attorney General Letitia James in her case against KuCoin.
Deaton further alleged that “The SEC is NOT acting in the best interests of retail crypto holders,” claiming, “The SEC has an agenda.”
SEC vs. Binance and Coinbase
On June 5, the SEC filed a complaint alleging Binance and its affiliated related entities had violated securities laws.
The allegations against Binance include its BNB exchange token being a security, offering trading services for multiple tokens considered securities, and wash trading to misconstrue trading volumes, among other charges.
As the crypto industry considered the lawsuit’s implications, the SEC filed against Coinbase the following day. The agency alleged Coinbase had violated securities laws, including operating an unregistered exchange.
Both cases have been filed in civil court and neither defendant is currently facing any criminal charges.
Deaton rallies grassroots support
Deaton seeks to establish a “putative class” of Binance and Coinbase users to participate in the legal proceedings, ensuring that the interests of crypto users are represented
Giving background on the amicus brief in the SEC vs. Ripple case, Deaton clarified that it was not about defending Ripple. Instead, it was an opportunity to state additional points from a third-party perspective, including the group’s opinions.
He further explained that Ripple is capable of defending itself, as are Binance and Coinbase. However, based on his belief the lawsuits are causing harm to crypto users, which contradicts the SEC’s “protecting investors” mantra, Deaton has asked affected parties to complete a Google Doc where they can also indicate their interest in contributing to the amicus brief.