Quadriga creditors seek exhumation of founder Gerald Cotten’s body in bid to retrieve £122 million in cryptocurrency

Investors who lost money as a result of the collapse of cryptocurrency exchange QuadrigaCX are demanding the exhumation of the body of its founder, Gerald Cotten, who died last year, aged 30,  while on honeymoon in India.

Creditors’ lawyers are claiming the circumstances surrounding Mr Cotten’s death from complications related to Crohn’s disease are “questionable.”

He was the only person who had the passwords of the digital wallets to cryptocurrency accounts worth $163 million (£122 million) held by more than 100,000 users.

Attempts by the exchange to locate the money have proved unsuccessful.

Mr Cotten’s sudden death has fuelled a number of conspiracy theories on the internet including suggestions that he faked his own demise.

Miller Thomson LLP, lawyers acting on behalf of the creditors, have written to the  Canadian Mounted Police asking that they “conduct an exhumation and post-mortem autopsy on the body of Gerald Cotten to confirm both its identity and the cause of death given the questionable circumstances”.

The lawyers claim that  publicly available information related to both Mr Cotten and Quadriga highlights the need for certainty around the question of whether Mr Cotten is in fact deceased.”

Amid fears that the body could decompose, they have asked the exhumation is carried out swiftly.

Quadriga Fintech Solutions Corp, is currently undergoing bankruptcy proceedings in Toronto.

A report by auditors Ernst & Young in May found Mr Cotten had used aliases to create several accounts which he may have used to trade on the exchange.

 

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The auditors also discovered that substantial amounts of money had been transferred to Mr Cotten’s personal holdings. E&Y did succeed in recouping approximately $25 million.

According to the auditors several other agencies, including the FBI, are also examining the collapse of the Quadriga.

Jennifer Robertson, Mr Cotten’s widow, said in a statement issued by her lawyer that she was heartbroken to learn of this request".

She added that her husband’s death should not be in doubt and that it was unclear how its confirmation "would assist the asset recovery process further".

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