For the sake of transparency for the cryptocommunity at hand, this transcript between ‘QCXAaron’ and ‘ProofofResearch’ (James Edwards) is being published to the public in order to assist with the ongoing investigation into QuadrigaCX.
This article, in specific, will be written in first person due to its nature (i.e., dealing with subjective responses, feelings, impressions, etc.).
None of the conjecture made by the author after the full transcript should be considered to be factual or truth in any way, shape or form. The only thing that is truth is the conversation between QuadrigaCX Aaron (an employee at QuadrigaCX) and James Edwards (ProofofResearch/Librehash).
For convenience, Aaron will be referred to as ‘A’, I will be ‘ME’.
The conversation was initiated by Aaron at 9:25 a.m. (EST) March 16th, 2019.
A: I understand u wanted to ask me some questions on the chat logs?
Me: Hey, who is this?
A: Aaron M
Me: Is there anyway I can confirm this is really Aaron and not a troll?
A: One sec
A: (Provides pictures showing the control panel of his Reddit account)
At this point in the conversation, I decide to entertain it on the chance that it is him. Figured I would be able to gauge the difference between his real identity and a troll through our dialogue. Later on, he did send a message through his Reddit account, verifying that it was him that had reached out.
A: That help any?
Me: It’ll do haha. Seems this convo is going to be off the record anyway.
A: Would prefer that
Me: I guess the first question would be, could you confirm the date of the last two messages you sent? [In reference to that pastebin leak]
A: Dec 9th
Me: I see. Also, in regards to the second before last message — I was wondering how you had heard about Gerry’s condition.
A: I heard the update from Alex, he was in direct contact with Jen that day. They have his cell# as he is on call 24/7 for the exchange
A: Woke up on a Sunday to the news he was sick with the stomach flu
A: Like 5 hrs later I learned he passed
Me: That’s rough.
Me: What motivated you to release the chat lot?
A: To get some real truth out there beyond the speculation
A: I owe the customers that much
Me: Fair enough. Is there anything in specific you felt needed to be clarified with that chat log?
A: Not really per say, there isn’t much in there beyond regular biz chats and some small personal chats
A: It was edited slightly to hide customers last names
A: And their banking info etc
Me: I see. Is it your opinion that there is no reason that people should be suspicious of Quadriga?
A: Lol, can’t really say that considering the spot we are in currently
A: If u asked me back in Nov or December I would have said yes
Me: That’s fair. Reading through the conversation I got the impression that Gerry was refilling the hot wallets from his reserves at other exchanges. Did your experience lead you to believe this was the case?
A: Exchange’s and cold wallets was my assumption
A: Most times I asked he would generally say it was a mix of both
A: That said, u can see in the chats even that I was always lead to believe we had giant crypto reserves
A: I even mentioned it one time in that chat saving fiat was our only problem and ask that our crypto reserves must be larger then our fiat
Me: Right. Seems he kept you a bit on the outside in terms of the exchange’s inner workings.
A: Depends how u look at it
A: Beyond crypto and fiat balance
A: I did pretty well everything
A: Handled all customer aspects including bounced deposits and dealing with regulatory bodies
A: But then again how often do u ask ur current boss how much money they have etc?
Me: Fair. It’s been reported that Quadriga didn’t keep any books. Given the fact that you worked so closely with Gerry, did this strike you as weird? Or were you aware of this the entire time?
A: I wasn’t aware until he passed
A: Was always told we paid taxes etc
A: He even complained to me in the past about how much he paid in tax
Me: I see.
Me: Following Gerry’s passing, did Jennifer provide a reason for why she waited until January 14th to let the general public know?
A: Nothing provided per say. Likely was because we were still investigating and cross referencing withdrawals etc to find out our current footing
A: And also as she had no power or say in the company until the board meeting
A: But that’s my assumption
Me: I see. Did she direct you all to not say anything? Even despite the chaos I’m sure that this caused, this seems like pretty major news that people would want to release a lot sooner than when Jen disclosed it
A: That aspect I can’t comment on while the court process is going on. I can answer stuff about me but not speculating on the company
Me: Did she tell you not to speak about it?
A: No more so I’d rather let the monitor do the process without causing further speculation
A: I apologize
Me: I see.
Me: Have you ever met Jennifer personally?
A: Only at the funeral
Me: Are you able to elaborate on QuadrigaCX’s relationship with Crypto Capital Co?
A: No real relationship Beyond them being a payment processor
Me: I see. What about QuadrigaCX’s relationship with Bitfinex? It appears that at certain points, both Quadriga and Bitfinex were accepting wires to the same account.
A: Likely could be another thing or aspect in coommon with crypto capital
A: Since all the exchange’s used it and crypto capital acts as both as inter exchange transfer service as well as a wire service for fiat payments
Me: There was news that broke in 2018 that a Polish account belonging to Crypto Capital Co was raided. Many identified the wire information as belonging to a bank account in Poland. Records confirm that Quadriga customers deposited there. Were you aware of this account seizure?
A: Nothing of it effected as far as I know. The only effect that happened is crypto capital changed their banking info
A: As a company it didn’t effect us or relate to us in any way beyond them being a payment processor
Me: I see. This didn’t scare Quadriga away at all?
A: It didn’t scare any exchange’s away, the on and off ramps for crypto are few and far between.
Me: Right. What’s puzzled some people though is the fact that other crypto exchanges have managed to acquire and maintain reliable banking. Why was Quadriga different, in your opinion?
A: Can’t speculate I’m afraid
Me: Makes sense. Another thing that puzzled people is the fact that the CIBC had sent Gerry an email about the frozen account ($25M), which received no response.
Me: Given the fact this was a pretty important item and something that ultimately changed the course of 2018 for QCX, why was that left unanswered?
A: Again I can’t speculate or specifically on the company. I was mainly just reaching out to answer your dates questions
Me: I see. My apologies, I reached a little outside of the scope there. Would other questions about the conversation you posted with Gerry be fair game?
A: At a later time, most definitely. I’m actually about to step out for a lil bit. Can we set up a time later?
Me: Certainly. How would I be able to reach you?
A: Through here is fine
Me: Perfect. I just have one last thing
Me: If it’s not too much trouble, do you think could send me a message (anything generic like ‘hi’) from that QCXAaron account? My Reddit name is ‘Randomshortudde’
A: I figured that was u
A: Fyi I’m not a criminal
A: Lol the NB drug guy was 34, or something when that article went out
A: I’m currently 30
Me: I’m not sure what you’re referring to lol
A: Lol likely mixed ur post up with someone else
A: There is a person claiming I’m a drug dealer due to a person with the same name in NB
A: I’m not that person lol as there seem to be many Aaron Matthews in the world and that guy is older than me
Rest of the Conversation
There were only a few more messages sent where we basically exchanged pleasantries and arranged to talk later.
QCXAaron did send me a message on Reddit as requested in relation to the conversation to that we had, which confirms that this was, in fact, him.
Why He Contacted Me
I have been in a couple QCX Telegram channels (set up by creditors) speaking about Aaron. I also made a post on Reddit stating that he should clarify the dates of the last messages (because I thought they were sent on December 8th, due to my count).
There are a lot of creditors that have told me that they’ve had direct conversations with Aaron in the past, so him reaching out didn’t seem out of the ordinary. Looks like he’s remained in contact with the community throughout this entire process.
My Opinion on the Messages
- I think he’s telling the truth about the date of when the last message was sent (December 9th). After re-reviewing the messages and applying dates to them using context clues and outside information (i.e., knowing Gerry’s itinerary, them saying ‘Happy Monday’, etc.), it appears that they didn’t really speak on weekends. So, its plausible that they did not speak on Saturday (December 8th when Gerry was supposed to arrive in Jaipur) and that he heard it from a colleague (Alex) on the 9th.
- I think he’s holding back a lot of information with regards to why Jennifer waited until January 14th to tell everyone Gerry was dead.
This is a very wild opinion, and if you think that I am off my rocker for stating it, I completely understand. But:
The smallest little voice in the back of my head keeps asking, ‘Did Jennifer murder Gerry?’
I know that this is nuts to suggest, but the more I think about it, the more I genuinely wonder about Jennifer’s role in the entire ordeal.
One thing that stuck out in that conversation between Aaron and myself, is him stating that he wanted to clear up misconceptions about the case. When looking back at the chat logs, one thing that sticks out to me is the fact that Gerry said that Jaipur, India, was somewhere that Jennifer had planned to go to. Donating to the orphanage was Jennifer’s plan. Jennifer picked the hotel, Jennifer arranged how Gerry’s body would be handled, Jennifer decided who would find out about when Gerry Cotten died, why and how. Jennifer behaved in a very weird manner following Gerry’s death.
Not having an autopsy is almost inconceivable. If your loved one dies suddenly, you want an autopsy. Point blank, period. Its an almost irresistible urge. You have to know (unless they were like 80+ years old or terminally ill). But your newlywed at the age of 30 on your honeymoon going from a healthy, vibrant young man to being dead in 24 hours? Who wouldn’t want a full autopsy to figure out what the hell happened?
I find the fact that he made a will just before his death very weird too. Who is to say that Jennifer didn’t push Gerry to make the will? He might’ve figured, ‘screw it, its for my wife’.
Him dying soon after is extremely strange. If there had been a large insurance policy taken out on him shortly before, then murder may perhaps be the first thing on all of our minds as it pertains to Gerry’s fate. However, since it was a ‘will’, this is not the case.
The fact that Jennifer has switched names three times and been extremely difficult to pin down is a little confusing as well. Sure, there wasn’t a lot of information on Gerry, but there really wasn’t any information on Jennifer, hardly. She didn’t even take his maiden name on (despite switching hers three times for almost arbitrary reasons).
We don’t really know how Gerry met Jennifer. It looks like they had a whirlwind romance that evolved over the course of a year. I know that I’m digging deep into conspiracy theory territory, but I think this theory deserves at least some consideration.
Candid Conversation About Dealing With Death
Hopefully you haven’t had to experience this, but it is more than likely that you have at some point in your life (if you're reading) and I’m sure you can relate to that feeling. It sucks and its hard. But I’m also certain that you knew life wasn’t going to give you a month to tell people.
The way that Jennifer handled Gerry’s death really sticks out to me. I mean, this is supposed to be her husband and they’re on their honeymoon. This should be one of the most traumatic tragedies ever. But when we read the Globe and Mail piece outlining Gerry’s death, it states that she checked out of the hotel before he was even embalmed. Perhaps she didn’t want to be there, I get that.
But usually when someone close to us dies, we don’t want it to be a secret.
Why should it be?
That was our loved one.
We want their memory cherished and respected, not hidden. Why the obscurity surrounding his death?
Its not like Jennifer was too distraught to relay the news.
She was handling business in that month+ after he died.
Was she getting her shit together? Serious question.
Because part of me wonders if she was just tying up loose ends before going public with this story in anticipation of the microscope that would eventually be placed upon her.
When you really look at it objectively, Jennifer is the one that has everything to gain from this. She claims that she knew nothing about Gerry’s business, yet she has millions of dollars in property and possessions (who knows how much she has in cash, because we know Gerry was storing that as well).
If everything works out for her, she can make a clean break with millions in her pocket. Its not like this would be the first time a woman has murdered a man or set him up to be murdered for money. I’m pretty sure there are entire television shows dedicated to covering this very concept.
Gerry’s Activities Muddy Things
The bigger issue here is that Gerry may have very well been involved in some illegal shit. And that’s what I think has compounded things, and perhaps Jennifer was well aware of this. Perhaps Jennifer knew that once people dug into QuadrigaCX, they would find out how fucked up their operations really were. I mean, she was his wife. I’m sure your wife (partner/close friend/family member) knows all about you — the real you that neither myself, your colleagues, or anyone on the outside world will ever know. Your partner knows your real opinion on politics, race, etc. But they can tolerate it and still love us because they know us well enough to not define us by these views. That’s what comes with the security of family.
I think there’s no doubt that Jennifer knew what Gerry was up to when it came to his business. And honestly, the criminal activity on QuadrigaCX makes his death all the more convenient for Jennifer. Before we would ever suspect that she did something wrong, we’re going to examine the living hell out of Gerry Cotten. Any wrongdoing we’ve suspected of Jennifer has been like a secondary, after-the-fact type of thing like ‘Oh he may have put her up to this’ or ‘Perhaps she’s just his accomplice in the whole scheme/setup’. But we haven’t really looked at her and said, ‘Maybe she outright had the man murdered.’
I know this theory is crazy as all hell, but shit, this entire story/saga is. I feel like we’d be fools to rule anything out and, honestly, what do we really know about Jennifer to rule this out? QuadrigaCX really isn’t her problem at the end of the day. Everything is on Gerry’s head, and the customer funds being lost, etc., is such a rabbit hole in itself that Jennifer being involved in nefarious activity is damn near an afterthought.