Spanish media reports that John McAfee, the controversial founder of the eponymous antivirus software company and cryptocurrency advocate and promoter, has been found dead.
McAfee was awaiting extradition to the United States on charges of tax evasion after a Spanish court approved the move Wednesday.
Major Spanish newspapers El Pais and El Mundo, citing comments from the Department of Justice of the Generalitat, are reporting that McAfee was found in his cell at Brians 2 Penitentiary Center in Barcelona and that efforts to revive him were unsuccessful. Though the cause of death has not been officially confirmed, multiple reports have cited possible suicide. McAfee was seventy-five.
Reuters previously reported that Spain's High Court had approved the extradition request. McAfee was arrested last October and has long maintained that the tax evasion charges were motivated by politics.
Unrelated to the tax charges, McAfee was charged last year by the Securities and Exchange Commission on promotion charges in connection with initial coin offerings (ICOs). Earlier this year, the Commodities Future Trading Commission (CFTC) filed suit against McAfee for allegedly conducting “pump and dump” schemes in the crypto space.
However, the Spanish High Court stipulated that McAfee’s extradition must only be related to tax fraud related to his 2016-2018 tax returns, per Reuters.
In mid-March, McAfee employed the tax law company Gordon Law Group, which focuses on the intersection between taxation and cryptocurrency, to fight against his tax evasion charges.
“Mr. McAfee strongly maintains his innocence, and we are prepared to establish that before the federal courts of the United States," the Gordon Law Group previously said.