QuadrigaCX founder’s widow to help pay back clients of defunct digital currency

The widow of QuadrigaCX founder Gerald (Gerry) Cotten has agreed to surrender the contents of his estate and the “vast majority” of her own assets to pay back Quadriga’s jilted clients.

The online cryptocurrency exchange collapsed in January 2019 after Gerald Cotten died suddenly in December from complications of Crohn’s disease on his honeymoon trip to India.

A total of 76,319 unsecured creditors — virtually all of them QuadrigaCX clients — have come forward to claim they are owed $214.6 million.

“I had no direct knowledge of how Gerry operated the business prior to his death, and was not aware of his improper actions … Specifically, I was not aware of nor participated in Gerry’s trading activities, nor his appropriation of the Affected User’s funds,” Jennifer Robertson wrote in a statement released Monday by her lawyer.

CBC News used property records to identify $7.5 million in Nova Scotia real estate Robertson inherited from Cotten when he died.

QuadrigaCX referred to itself as a leading bitcoin exchange.

“I have agreed to return to QCX assets that I had previously thought were purchased with Gerry’s legitimately earned profits, salary and dividends,” Robertson wrote. 

“I was upset and disappointed with Gerry’s activities as uncovered by the investigation when I first learned of them, and continue to be as we conclude this settlement.”

Cotten died with sole knowledge of passwords used to encrypt electronic “cold wallets” of various cryptocurrencies. 

A forensic investigation revealed those wallets were empty, and that Cotten used aliases to transfer clients’ funds into his own accounts.

Robertson’s lawyer, Richard Niedermayer, said the statement is the only one his client will make for now, which she called a “fair and equitable resolution for QCX and the Affected Users.”

Read more at CBC.ca