Eccentric Crypto Promoter John McAfee Commits Suicide in Spanish Prison
British national and tech mogul John McAfee has been confirmed dead by Spanish authorities.
McAfee Death Under Investigation
According to Spanish outlet El Pais, creator of popular computer antivirus software McAfee, died by suicide while behind bars on Wednesday, at the age of 75.
Arrested on Oct. 2020 at the El Prat Airport as he was about to board a flight to Turkey, McAfee had been detained in the Brians 2 Prison for the last eight months on tax evasion charges.
His extradition to the US was just approved Wednesday morning before the unfortunate incident.
McAfee was found hanging in the Sant Esteve de Sesrovires prison in Barcelona. Prison officials and paramedics had tried resuscitating him but to no avail.
Spanish authorities are ruling it a suicide pending an autopsy.
McAfee has been in the crosshairs of US authorities for the last couple of years. The US Department of Justice (DoJ) accused him of financial crimes.
In a press release, the DoJ noted that the eccentric antivirus software guru had earned millions in income from promoting cryptocurrencies, consulting work, speaking engagements, and selling the rights to his life story for a documentary and refused to pay the commensurate taxes.
The charges covered three fiscal years from 2016 to 2018.
McAfee had quite an imposing criminal record with authorities. In 2012, he was named by Belize authorities as a “person of interest” in the murder of his neighbor. Even though he was not formally charged, McAfee refused to pay the $25 million levy.
The eccentric software genius has also been accused of a ‘pump and dump’ scheme by the DoJ.
Per a March 5 complaint by the US agency, McAfee and one of his advisers, Jimmy Galen Watson, engaged in the fraudulent promotion of digital assets to investors through his social media accounts. According to Manhattan US Attorney Audrey Strauss,
“The defendants allegedly used McAfee’s Twitter account to publish messages to hundreds of thousands of his Twitter followers touting various cryptocurrencies through false and misleading statements to conceal their true, self-interested motives. McAfee, Watson, and other members of McAfee’s cryptocurrency team allegedly raked in more than $13 million from investors they victimized with their fraudulent schemes.”
Charges Politically Motivated
McAfee, before his demise, alleged that the charges brought against him were politically motivated, and his widow has confirmed these claims.
According to a Twitter post by Janice McAfee, three days before his death, US authorities preferred that her husband died in prison.
This is because he had refused to cower to their demands. She also slammed the criminal justice system claiming that suspects were treated as though they are criminals without evidence.