November 30, 2018 — Cotten and wife Jennifer Robertson arrive in New Delhi, India. They have come to the country to celebrate their honeymoon and participate in the opening of an Angel House orphanage they sponsored.
December 4, 2018 — Quadriga announces on Reddit (archive) that Ontario Superior Court is releasing the funds that CIBC held “hostage” to Costodian, its payment processor. Quadriga writes: “According to our counsel, the funds should be paid out by the end of this week.” However, new problems ensue when the court issues the funds back to Costodian in the form of bank drafts.
November 27, 2018 — Cotten signs a will, leaving all his belongings to Robertson, including several properties, a 2017 Lexus, an airplane, a 2015 Mini Cooper and a 51-foot Jeanneau sailboat. He goes a step further and details the distribution of his assets should Robertson not survive him, even specifying that $100,000 CAD go to his dogs.
“Little is known about Ms. Robertson, who appears to have used three different surnames since she began buying real estate in Nova Scotia with Mr. Cotten in 2016,” reports Globe and Mail in February 2019.
December 8, 2018 — At 5:15 p.m. Cotten and Robertson land in Jaipur, where they plan to spend four nights at the high-end Oberoi Rajvilas. Soon after the couple check-in, Cotten gets a belly ache. At 9:45 p.m., he checks into Fortis Escorts Hospital. He spends the night at the hospital in a private room. (Globe and Mail)
December 9, 2018 — Cotten’s condition deteriorates. At 7:26 p.m. he is declared dead due to complications of Crohn’s disease. The cause of death is cardiac arrest. (Globe and Mail.) Robertson withholds the news from Quadriga customers for more than a month. Meanwhile, the exchange continues to accept deposits. (Affidavit)
December 10, 2018 — Simmi Mehra, who works at Mahatma Gandhi Medical College & Hospital, refuses to embalm Cotten’s body, in part because the body was coming from Oberoi, the hotel where Cotten had been staying, not the hospital where he died.
December 10, 2018 — SMS Medical College issues an embalming certificate for Cotten’s body. Sangita Chauhan, who heads the anatomy department there, does not actually see the body. Instead, a junior staffer handles the processing. The body is picked up by staffers at Cotten’s hotel, Oberoi. (Globe and Mail)
December 10, 2018 — Robertson checks out of the Oberoi and heads back to Canada “with the body,” according to the Globe and Mail.
December 13, 2018 — Cotten’s death is registered with the Government of Rajasthan Directorate of Economics and Statistics. “The death certificate, obtained by The Globe, lists his “address at time of death” as the Oberoi Rajvilas.” However, a death certificate, later obtained by CoinDesk, lists his “place of death” as Fortis Escorts Hospital.
December 14, 2018 — A funeral service is held for Cotten at J.A. Snow Funeral Home in Halifax Nova Scotia. (Reddit)
January 14, 2019 — Quadriga finally announces that its CEO is deceased. Cotten’s widow posts an announcement on the Quadriga website explaining that Cotten passed away in India while opening an orphanage. To quell any suspicions that he ran off with everyone’s money, she bestows her husband with a host of virtuous qualities