A B.C. woman is pressing police to solve the murder of her partner — a man with a fortune in cryptocurrency and a neo-Nazi past who was shot dead on a forest service road near Squamish, B.C., almost four years ago.
The body of the man Eva McLennan knew as avid rock-climber Jesse James — later confirmed as Britt Greenbaum — was found in his burnt-out vehicle off the Sea-to-Sky Highway in June 2017.
The U.S. man’s murder brought to light details of a secretive past that included several aliases, spreading racist ideology at college, and masterminding a spam empire hawking pornography and penis-enlargement pills, which led to AOL successfully suing him for US $12.8 million.
While she does not condone Greenbaum’s actions before they met, McLennan says he was a positive influence on her life and she will not let his death go.
“I’m not going to let it rest. He’s with me for life,” said McLennan, 26.
McLennan and Greenbaum’s father believe the murdered man had a fortune in bitcoin that could now be worth billions, given the soaring value of the cryptocurrency.
CBC has not been able to verify the amount of bitcoin Greenbaum held, or the status of his holdings, but has confirmed with a police source that a substantial cryptocurrency fortune is part of the case.
McLennan says she has also passed clues to the Federal Bureau of Investigation that have linked Greenbaum to other ongoing U.S. investigations.
The Integrated Homicide Investigation Unit has shared little about the progress of the case with the media, and the FBI has refused to comment on its involvement.
Living, climbing off the grid
McLennan says she first met Greenbaum at a Victoria climbing gym in 2015 and soon after she moved to the Squamish area, where they lived together off the grid.
“I knew he was smart, I knew he was rich and that we’d get along like a house on fire,” she said.
McLennan says she preferred to sleep alone in a tent, and he slept not far away in his vehicle. They ate outdoors and washed up in creeks.
She said the outdoor lifestyle “just fit me like a glove — just the simplicity of minimalism,” and she joked that her partner “sponsored” her to climb full time by financially supporting their adventures.
“It was a great relationship,” said McLennan, who said she also reintroduced Greenbaum to his old love of chess.
But she always knew the man she was with had a mysterious past.
McLennan said he shielded her from his “secrets” and feared he was being hunted by somebody who was after his online wealth. She says he asked her to use a pseudonym for safety.
She says Greenbaum, who, as Jesse James, was known widely in the Squamish rock-climbing…