The day the sentence of a Spanish court in favor of his extradition has been made public, John McAfee he died in a prison cell outside Barcelona. The pioneer of the fugitive Anvirus was 75 years old.
McAfee had been arrested in Spain since last fall, when he was arrested on charges of tax evasion. The U.S. Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission added to those allegations in March, accuse McAfee and a partner of multiple counts in relation to two cryptocurrency schemes that had presumably gone through years. He had faced tens of years in prison if convicted of all charges.
Brians 2 prison security guards found McAfee dead in his cell Wednesday; in a statement provided to the Associated Press, the Catalan government has indicated that McAfee has died by suicide. The request for comment to the Catalan government has not been returned by press time.
“Our legal team in Spain has confirmed that John has been found dead in his cell. I am sorry to hear the events and my prayers go out to his wife Janice,” said McAfee’s lawyer, Nishay K. Sanan, in a statement. “They tried to love this country but the US Government made its existence impossible. They tried to get rid of it but they failed.”
After a stint spent in Roanoke, Virginia, and a series of short-term jobs, McAfee made his fortune in antivirus software. He founded McAfee Associates in 1987; his eponymous product was one of the first of its kind. As detailed in a final profile WIRED 2012, McAfee had been inspired by the spread of Brain, the first computer virus to hit PCs in the world. He left a job in Lockheed to start a business outside his home; within a few years McAfee antivirus had gained ubiquity. In 1992 he took over the public company. Two years after he left, tens of millions of dollars richer than when he started.
For the balance of the 90s and into the ’00s, McAfee seemed to follow a similar arc to other early technological success stories. He founded a yoga studio, started an instant messaging company, wrote a few books. But like Joshua Davis wrote in 2012, McAfee lost a significant amount of money when the economy collapsed in 2008, and went to Belize that year. His behavior became more and more alarming; he became fashionable as a vigilante, hiring guards and carrying guns, and building a mysterious laboratory on his expansive complex. In November of that year, authorities in Belize called McAfee a “person of interest” in connection with the death of his neighbor. McAfee fled.
In the following years, McAfee distinguished itself as a pioneer and challenger of cryptocurrency. He promoted several currencies on his active Twitter feed, presumably being highly compensated for falling behind the scenes. The SEC also accused McAfee of running a parallel “pump-and-dump” scheme, in which he and his associates allegedly endured charging on a niche currency, urging people to buy on social media. media and to sell on the resulting frenzy. McAfee intended to fight the charges, according to Sanan.
It says something about how much has happened in McAfee’s life that his two attempts to run for president of the United States – he gained some support in the 2016 Libertarian primaries – amounted to barely a footnote. Or that of 2017 the man whose name is synonymous with antivirus was legally prohibited to mention “McAfee” in the context of cybersecurity, part of an agreement with Intel, which acquired the company in 2010 for almost $ 8 billion.
John McAfee’s life was a bush of complications; his legacy is one of zenith and nadi, and at every point he was singular.
If you or a loved one has suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Line at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
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