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McAfee antivirus software creator found dead in Spanish prison

2021-06-24 19:00 by


American software pioneer John McAfee, 75, was found dead on Wednesday in a prison cell in Barcelona, Spain, according to McAfee's lawyers. A statement from the Catalonia regional government Justice Department, which manages prisons there, said that prison medical personnel and guards attempted to perform life-saving procedures after finding McAfee, but were unsuccessful. The statement said "everything indicates" that McAfee could have died by suicide.

His death came just hours after a Spanish court announced that it had approved his extradition to the United States to face tax charges punishable by decades in prison, authorities said.

In 1987 McAfee founded McAfee Associates, a software company that produced one of the first commercial antivirus products. The entrepreneur ran the company until 1994, when he resigned. By the time McAfee as a company was purchased by Intel for what at the time was the astounding price of $7.78 billion, McAfee the man had already sold his entire stake in the company.

McAfee was arrested in Spain in October after being indicted in the United States for tax evasion months earlier. He allegedly failed to file taxes for four years despite earning millions in income between 2014 and 2018 from promoting cryptocurrencies, consulting work, speaking engagements, and selling the rights to his life story for a documentary, according to court documents. The amount he owed was not specified in the indictment.

McAfee spent many of his final years chasing his appetites for drugs, guns, adventure, prostitutes and cryptocurrency — and wasn't shy in discussing his proclivities. He also was accused of sexual assault, labeled by Belizean authorities as a person of interest in an unsolved murder investigation and indicted by U.S. authorities for tax fraud. He denied all wrongdoing.

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