John McAfee, the man whose name is synonymous with antivirus software, was found dead in his Barcelona prison cell on Wednesday, according to multiple sources, including El Mundo, which reports that prison administrators found the creator of McAfee antivirus software dead in his cell. Attempts were made to resuscitate him until he was officially declared dead. Further reports surrounding McAfee's demise were confirmed by Reuters on Wednesday afternoon, when the Catalan justice department released a statement.
John McAfee was 75 years old.
John McAfee died after the Spanish government approved the extradition to the US
"The judicial procession has traveled to the prison and is investigating the causes of death," said sources inside the justice department, in the Reuters report. "Everything indicates that it could be a death by suicide." Hours after his death, John McAfee's Instagram account posted a large "Q", which could mean anything, ranging from McAfee being interested in conspiracy theories, to a simple hacking of his account in response to the news of his death currently sweeping the world.
The death of McAfee came one day after Spain's National Court approved the United States' request to extradite him to face charges of tax evasion. Spanish authorities placed him under arrest last October in the authority of an outstanding warrant from the U.S. Justice Department (DOJ). The charges include a sealed indictment that U.S. prosecutors filed in June of 2020 alleging that the world-renown developer failed to file his tax returns between 2014 and 2018. The U.S. DOJ claims McAfee profited to the tune of millions of dollars from "promoting cryptocurrencies, consulting work, speaking engagements and selling the rights to his life story for a documentary," during the timeframe.
John McAfee's fame turned to global infamy
Another separate complaint from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) alleges that McAfee and a co-conspirator schemed the promotion of several cryptocurrencies to his social media followers without disclosing that this was a sponsored initiative. According to the SEC, McAfee made more than $23 million from the alleged scheme. Most of us know McAfee as a household name for the popular antivirus software of the same name that the man departed to found several startups. But in 2012, his fame turned to infamy as stories came to light of his life in exile in Belize. Eventually, local police declared the man was wanted for questioning in a possible link with the murder of his neighbor, the next chapter of McAfee's life began.
The high tide of public intrigue into McAfee's personal life happened when VICE met him in an undisclosed location to execute an interview. But they left his GPS data in a photo they later uploaded with the story, which tipped everyone off to his location: a Guatemalan resort. Local authorities then took him into custody, after which he was deported back to the United States. Since then, outlandish stunts and unconscionable claims have orbited his personal life. In 2016, he declared himself a Hail-Mary presidential candidate for the Libertarian Party, and since that didn't come to fruition, he lived his remaining years playing with cryptocurrency and spending a lot of time on the net.
This was a breaking story and was regularly updated as new information became available.