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Court documents have revealed the names of two U.S. District Court judges who will preside over lawsuits against Coinbase and Binance brought against them by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
The SEC v. Coinbase case will be heard by District Court Judge Jennifer H. Rearden in the Southern District of New York, the documents show.
Meanwhile, District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson will hear the SEC case against Binance in the District of Columbia, according to the latest documents.
SEC vs. Coinbase: Judge Jennifer H. Rearden
Judge Rearden, 53, was appointed U.S. District Judge in January 2022. In the United States, district judges are appointed by the chief judge of that court.
While Rearden’s tenure was fairly short, she recently ruled on a cryptocurrency-related issue that involved a clash with Binance. US.
On March 27, Rearden approved an emergency motion from the US Department of Justice to temporarily stop a $1.03 billion deal between Binance. US and bankrupt cryptocurrency lending platform Voyager Digital.
The decision meant affected Voyager customers would have to wait longer for their payout.
Rearden applied the “balance of difficulty” criterion to arrive at a decision in favor of the US government:
This later turned out to be a deal breaker for Voyager: a month later, Binance. The US withdrew from the deal, citing a “hostile and uncertain regulatory climate in the United States” for its change of heart.
The bankruptcy plan for Voyager was finally approved on May 17, but not by Rearden.
Prior to becoming a judge, Rearden worked as a commercial litigation lawyer and received her PhD from New York Law School in 1996.
It should be noted that a judge’s education, experience or previous decisions in other cases are not indicative of the outcome of future cases.
SEC vs. Binance: Judge Amy Berman Jackson
Judge Jackson, 68, was appointed United States District Judge in March 2011 by former US President Barack Obama. Prior to that, she received her Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School.
While Jackson has provided opinions in 888 cases, none of them appear to have involved cryptocurrency-related disputes.
The SEC v. @Binance case has just been assigned to DC Judge Amy Berman Jackson.
Judge Berman Jackson previously served as a federal prosecutor, but she has also worked on the criminal defense side.
She was appointed to the bench by President Obama in 2010.
She has predicted…
— MetaLawMan (@MetaLawMan) June 7, 2023
However, it has recently ruled on several highly political disputes.
Jackson sentenced Paul Manafort Jr. and Roger J. Stone Jr.—former advisers and friends of former U.S. President Donald Trump—to 43 and 40 months in prison, respectively, on a series of charges related to the 2019 Russia investigation.
Trump shared his negative attitude towards Jackson and her decision.
Is this the Judge that put Paul Manafort in SOLITARY CONFINEMENT, something that not even mobster Al Capone had to endure? How did she treat Crooked Hillary Clinton? Just asking! https://t.co/Fe7XkepJNN
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 12, 2020
In May, Jackson approved a U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) motion to block testimony from former U.S. President Donald Trump in connection with two other lawsuits filed by former FBI officials.
Jackson served as Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia from 1980 to 1986.
While there, she received a Department of Justice Special Achievement Award for her work on several high-profile murder and sexual harassment cases.
Related: U.S. federal judge approves DOJ criminal case over use of cryptocurrency to evade sanctions
The SEC sued both Binance on June 5 and Coinbase on June 6, alleging that the exchanges violated various securities regulations, primarily over the alleged offering of cryptocurrencies, which the regulator considers unregistered securities.
Binance has been accused of illegal activities in the US.
Binance and Coinbase have confirmed that they will “strongly” defend the lawsuits against them.