Widow of QuadrigaCX founder to hand over most assets in settlement

Online exchange, which launched in 2013 and grew to become one of Canada’s largest with 363,000 customers

The widow of the founder of QuadrigaCX has agreed to hand over most of her assets in a settlement reached as part of bankruptcy proceedings for the now defunct cryptocurrency exchange.

The settlement says Jennifer Robertson and the estate of her late husband, Gerald Cotten, are to return about $12 million in assets to help repay users of the exchange. Those assets include properties in Nova Scotia and British Columbia, a small aircraft, “luxury vehicles,” a sailboat, investments, and cash, along with gold and silver coins.

The funds are only a fraction of the $214.6 million in cash and cryptocurrency that more than 76,000 unsecured users have claimed following the collapse of the exchange after Cotten’s death last December.

The online exchange, which launched in 2013 and grew to become one of Canada’s largest with 363,000 customers, offered a platform for trading and storing digital assets like Bitcoin, Litecoin and Ethereum.

The exchange was already facing liquidity issues before the death of Cotten, who was chief executive and sole director, but employees found they were unable to locate or access most of the cryptocurrency assets after he died.

An investigation by creditor monitor Ernst and Young found the exchange had flawed financial reporting and that significant volumes of cryptocurrency had been transferred to personal accounts controlled by Cotten. It found losses from trading and fees in those accounts affected QuadrigaCX’s reserves, while Cotten also created fake accounts on QuadrigaCX to inflate revenue figures.

Robertson said in a statement that she wasn’t aware of how her husband operated the business, or his appropriation of users funds.

ALSO READ: QuadrigaCX founder transferred customers’ funds to his own accounts: report

“I had no direct knowledge of how Gerry operated the business prior to his death, and was not aware of his improper actions in managing the QuadrigaCX business.”

The monitor said that to its knowledge, neither Cotten nor Robertson had material sources of income other than funds received from QuadrigaCX, though neither reported income from the company on tax returns in recent years.

Robertson said that she has agreed to return assets she thought were purchased with legitimately earned proceeds from the company.

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

Robertson will be able to keep about $90,000 in cash, $20,000 in retirement savings, a Jeep, and some jewelry and furnishings as part of the settlement.

The assets handed over by Robertson will add to the roughly $32 million in cash plus $1 million in cryptocurrency that Ernst and Young has already recovered from QuadrigaCX.

Robertson said she hopes the settlement will allow users to be repaid as much as possible while keeping fees as low as possible.

“I believe this settlement is a fair and equitable resolution for QCX and the affected users…in return, this settlement will allow me to move on with the next chapter of my life.”

Ian Bickis, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Masks mandatory in Old Massett as Haida Gwaii COVID cases total 26

Old Massett Village Council says curfew will be enforced with community service

All-Islands Protocol Table working to restore Haida place names

List of 12 priority names created; Queen Charlotte, Port Clements councils vote to support changes

B.C. premier ‘not going to be apologetic’ about closure of Haida Gwaii fishing lodges

Horgan says ‘public health takes the priority’ over business in implementation of travel restriction

B.C. mogul sells private Naikoon properties to parks system in $1 million deal

NIHO founder Rudy Nielsen sells 320 acres to BC Parks; Ministry statement expected in ‘coming months’

Rio Tinto responds to U.S. aluminum import tariffs

The tariffs were imposed by President Donald Trump Aug. 6

53 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths cap off week of high infection rates in B.C.

Roughly 1,500 people are self-isolating because they either have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it

Moving on: Tanev scores 11 seconds into OT as Canucks oust Wild

Vancouver beats Minnesota 5-4 to move into first round of NHL playoffs

VIDEO: U.S. Air Force pilot does fly-by for B.C. son amid COVID border separation

Sky-high father-son visit plays out over White Rock Pier

3 Vancouver police officers test positive for COVID after responding to large party

Union president says other officers are self-isolating due to possible exposure

New mothers with COVID-19 should still breastfeed: Canada’s top doctor

Dr. Theresa Tam made the recommendation during World Breastfeeding Awareness Week

Collapse of Nunavut ice shelf ‘like losing a good friend:’ glaciologist

The ice shelf on the northwestern edge of Ellesmere Island has shrunk 43 per cent

B.C. wildfire crews have battled 111 blazes in the last seven days

Twenty-nine fires remain active, as of Friday (Aug 7)

‘We don’t make the rules’: Okanagan pub owner says staff harassed over pandemic precautions

‘If you have six people plus a baby, guess what? That’s seven’ - West Kelowna Kelly O’Bryan’s owner

T-Rex earns big bids at B.C. dino auction

Over 500 dino-themed lots sold to buyers from across North America

Most Read