The Hunt for the Crypto King: Where is Quadriga co-founder Michael Patryn now?

Trust No One: The Hunt for the Crypto King. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2022
Trust No One: The Hunt for the Crypto King. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2022 /

We can’t talk about Gerald “Gerry” Cotten and his company QuadrigaCX without discussing Quadriga co-founder Michael Patryn. As is revealed in the new Netflix true crime documentary Trust No One: The Hunt for the Crypto King, Patryn has quite an interesting past.

What’s even more intriguing is that Patryn’s involvement seemed to be kept hidden and was not revealed until investigators started digging into the company and its past. Below, we’ll look into Michael Patryn and what he’s doing today.

The Hunt for the Crypto King: Who is Michael Patryn?

Michael Patryn has, perhaps, the most salacious background of anyone involved with the whole Quadriga scheme. Michael had carefully cultivated a macho bad*ss image by presenting himself as a muscular, amateur UFC guy.

But his involvement with Quadriga was buried pretty deep. Research into the website’s original domain name showed that the site was registered to Michael Patryn and not Gerry Cotten, despite Gerry telling people he was the company’s sole founder. So, why the secrecy?

Further digging by The Globe and Mail journalists Alexandra Posadzki and Joe Castaldo revealed that Patryn is actually Omar Dhanani (also, there is a known crypto sleuth on Twitter, @zachxbt, who has done extensive digging into Omar and other scams), a former money launderer with connections to an identity theft ring called Shadowcrew. Dhanani is believed to be a serial scammer and was previously arrested. His mugshots helped investigators realize Patryn and Dhanani were the same person.

The Hunt for the Crypto King: What is Michael Patryn’s connection to Gerry Cotten?

It’s not entirely clear how Patryn and Cotten met, although it seems like they met online, possibly in the TalkGold forum, a site for investment scams where Cotten first started using his “Sceptre” username.

However, in the documentary, someone claiming to be Patryn found the online Telegram group consisting of many Quadriga members who had been defrauded by the company and claimed he left back in 2016. Patryn says he left the company before anything shady happened, adding that it was in good standing before he departed. There is no way to verify if that is 100% true.

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As one documentary subject notes, if he had known a former money launderer and identity thief had co-founded Quadriga, he never would have participated, which is likely why his involvement was kept secret. But it also doesn’t sound likely that, given Patryn’s background, he was completely innocent of Cotten’s scam. Again, there is no hard evidence, either way, so all we have is what we’re told in the documentary.

The Hunt for the Crypto King: Is Michael Patryn in jail?

Patryn previously served 18 months in jail for fraud, but nothing in the documentary indicates that he was charged with anything revolving around Quadriga. No official criminal investigation took place due to Cotten’s death.

The Hunt for the Crypto King: Michael Patryn’s involvement in Wonderland

What’s even more crazy is that Patryn was later involved in another crypto scam concerning the company Wonderland. Wonderland is a decentralized-finance project where Patryn worked as an official. But once it was revealed that he secretly had ties to Quadriga, he was ousted and more details about Wonderland came to light, per Bloomberg.

Patryn operated under the pseudonym Sifu or 0xSifu during his time at the company as the treasury head. His connections to Quadriga were discovered by an anonymous Twitter user. Patryn was unable for comment. What’s even more strange is that the company’s co-founder Daniele Sestagalli appears to have known about Patryn’s past.

The controversy surrounding Patryn’s involvement led to the company losing a significant amount of its value.

The Hunt for the Crypto King: Where is Michael Patryn now?

It’s not clear where Patryn is these days. Understandably, he has mostly taken himself off the grid and does not have known social media accounts. If he is still active on social media then his accounts are probably anonymous or set to private.

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