Anti-virus software pioneer John McAfee was found dead in his prison cell in Barcelona on Wednesday after Spain's High Court ruled he could be extradited to the United States where he faced tax evasion charges that carried a sentence of up to 30 years.
He is alleged to have deliberately failed to file tax returns between 2014 and 2018, despite earning millions from consulting work, cryptocurrencies and selling the rights to his life story.
The Spanish court ultimately chose to approve McAfee's extradition on Wednesday based on charges that stemmed to his 2016, 2017 and 2018 tax returns. He was seventy five years old and was arrested at El Prat Airport in Barcelona October last year.
An indictment filed by prosecutors in Tennessee and later publicly released by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) in October 2020 alleges that McAfee attempted to "evade" the US Internal Revenue Service by "concealing" assets, such as real estate property and a yacht, by placing them in the name of "others".
In Washington, the IRS did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The Spanish prosecutor, Carlos Bautista, dismissed the claim of political motivations, insisting the Libertarian Party rarely gains more than 1 percent of votes in USA elections.
The US Department of Justice (DOJ) is also aware of the situation, as McAfee was pending to be extradited to the United States after being detained by the Spanish police a year ago in the El Prat Airport.
According to the USA extradition request filed in November and quoted in the ruling, McAfee earned more than 10 million euros ($12 million) in the four years in question, but never filed a tax return. A millionaire who doesn't want to pay taxes, ' Bautista said. The reports indicate that authorities believe he committed suicide, but the cause of death has not been officially determined.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission also sued McAfee for allegedly being paid to promote "worthless" initial coin offerings (ICO) on social media.
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