John McAfee, the creator of the antivirus software company bearing his name, was found dead in his prison cell near Barcelona, Spain, according to multiple outlets. He was 75.
According to the Associated Press, authorities are investigating the cause of death. His lawyer told Reuters that McAfee died by suicide.
A statement from the regional Catalan government did not name McAfee, but described attempting to revive a 75-year-old U.S. citizen who was awaiting extradition to his country. Just hours earlier, Spain’s National Court ruled for McAfee’s extradition to the United States.
McAfee was wanted in the U.S. for evading taxes, which could have resulted in a 30-year prison sentence. Tennessee prosecutors charged the computer software entrepreneur after he failed to report income he made from speaking engagements, selling the rights to his life story for a documentary and promoting cryptocurrencies. He was arrested in October 2020 at the Barcelona airport. Since then, McAfee had been waiting in prison for his extradition hearing. During a hearing earlier this month, he claimed the charges were politically motivated and feared he would spend his life behind bars upon returning to the U.S.
McAfee was previously a person of interest in the death of George Faull and ordered by a Florida court to pay $25 million in a wrongful death lawsuit by Faull’s estate. When Faull was found dead in his Belizean home, McAfee left for Guatemala. The computer software tycoon kept a low profile until his attempt to run for the U.S. presidency in 2016. He ran again in 2020.
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McAfee was the subject of the 2016 documentary “Gringo: The Dangerous Life of John McAfee,” which he refused to participate in.
In his final tweet, McAfee said, “In a democracy, power is given not taken. … Take care which powers you allow a democracy to wield.”
On June 10, McAfee was more direct about his time in prison. “There is much sorrow in prison, disguised as hostility,” he tweeted. “I’m old and content with food and a bed but for the young prison is a horror.”
If you or anyone you know is having thoughts of suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or go to SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources.
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