QuadrigaCX: Cotten’s Widow Says CEO Used Personal Money On Crypto Exchange
The widow of deceased QuadrigaCX CEO Gerald Cotton has said that her late husband used his own money to ensure customers kept accessing withdrawals even as a legal battle raged between the exchange and a local bank.
Jennifer Robertson’s remarks are part of her statement sent by the platform’s legal representatives Stewart McKelvey.
In the statement made public on March 13, Robertson, who is also the executor of Cotten’s estate, says that her husband informed her of this last year.
Apparently, according to her statement, he was using his own cash after the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) moved to freeze the exchange’s fiat holdings over concerns regarding the origin of the money.
“While I had no direct knowledge of how Gerry operated the business, he told me that he had been putting his own money back into QCX to fund user withdrawals in 2018 while the CIBC money remained frozen.”
She also adds that she believed the deceased did that because he had “the best interests of the business in mind, and cared for his customers.”
In the same statement, Roberston notes that QuadrigaCX legal representatives Stewart McKelvey would not be representing the exchange going forward. She said that the law firm had withdrawn from any further representation because of an unspecified conflict of interest.
This new development in the case comes after Ernst & Young (EY), the exchange’s court-appointed monitor, had received undisclosed information regarding the potential for there to be a conflict of interest.
Part of her statement on this development reads:
“[…], in light of concerns regarding a potential conflict of interest […] they [Stewart McKevley] have withdrawn from representing QuadrigaCX (QCX) and the other applicant companies in the CCAA process.”
Robertson says that she has not been given any details regarding the information the Monitor received.
The statement from Cotten’s widow comes at a time the process of locating the missing funds appears not to be yielding much.
QuadrigaCX was granted creditor protection in early February after its lawyers claimed that Cotten’s death left the exchange’s remaining team unable to access about $140 million in crypto belonging to over 115,000 customers.
The Nova Scotia Supreme Court granted the exchange a 30-day stay of proceedings (that has since been extended by another 45 days). The judge also appointed Ernst & Young (EY) as the monitor, tasked with the responsibility of overseeing and facilitating Quadriga’s efforts towards recovering the missing funds.
Since then, EY has reported that there is progress in the effort to secure the exchange’s fiat funds currently held by multiple third-party payment processors.
However, the exchange has still not succeeded in locating most of the crypto holdings that many presume could be lost. The situation isn’t helped by the fact that all the cold wallet addresses the platform claimed stored the funds were found to be empty.
Questions thus linger regarding whether Quadriga did have the cryptocurrencies at the time of Cotten’s death.
Disclaimer: This is not investment advice. Cryptocurrencies are highly volatile assets and are very risky investments. Do your research and consult an investment professional before investing. Never invest more than you can afford to lose. Never borrow money to invest in cryptocurrencies.