Co-Founder of QuadrigaCX Exposed as Reports of Criminal Convictions Surface
QuadrigaCX has been taking up a lot of press time lately as the platform works to regain the missing cryptocurrency that it owes to its former investors. However, the attention is being shifted to the co-founder right now, and his criminal activities that fill up his past. Known to investors as Michael Patryn, his former name was actually Omar Dhanani.
Patryn joined up with Gerald Cotten in 2013 to launch the crypto exchange, using a separate name to mask his identity that was linked to many crimes in the United States, according to report from Bloomberg.
While this kind of history may never have come to light in any other situation, the fact that there is still $145 million in crypto assets missing from the exchange after the death of Cotten makes Patryn’s history a little more interesting.
Cotten passed away at age 30, following complications associated with Crohn’s disease, in December 2018. Since his widow explained that the crypto assets were allegedly located within cold wallets, much of the case has been going through a search to find the finds, using court-appointed Ernst & Young as an independent monitor.
Reports show that Patryn had left the platform in 2016 after a disagreement regarding the listing process with Cotten.
Globe and Mail, a Canadian newspaper, said that Patryn and partner Lovie Horner were still the two largest shareholders in the company today, despite the lack of involvement in company operations.
He has continually denied that his identity is Omar Dhanani, but Bloomberg uncovered records that show two name changes that changed his first name, and then his last, which occurred in 2003 and 2008, respectively.
One of Patryn’s believed former identities was Dhanani, who had been sentenced to 18 months in federal prison for identity theft, which was connected with bank and credit card fraud in 2005. Bloomberg added that, at the time, Dhanani had also pled guilty to a case involving shawdowcrew.com three years earlier, which was a marketplace that trafficked a surplus of 1.5 million credit card and debit card numbers.
He also pled guilty for other criminal cases in 2007, including burglary, grand larceny, and computer fraud.
Bloomberg alleges that, after the criminal was deported to Canada, he created a new name for himself as a Bitcoin entrepreneur, with his current LinkedIn profile stating that he lives in Vietnam. The profile includes that he is the founder and chairman for Fintech Ventures Group (FVG), which is an incubator for blockchain technology in Canada.
The only indication that he worked for QuadrigaCX on this profile is a small blurb that says he was involved with multiple cryptocurrency firms from 1999 to 2013.
To view the full Bloomberg article, visit https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-03-19/from-fraud-to-fintech-quadriga-co-founder-s-past-crimes-emerge?srnd=cryptocurrencies.