Spanish court approves extradition of John McAfee to US

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Spain’s National Court approved the extradition of antivirus software pioneer John McAfee for tax evasion charges.

The court made the announcement on Wednesday, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported.

“The court agrees to grant the extradition of John David McAfee as requested by the American judicial authorities for the crimes referred to in the tax offense indictments for years 2016 to 2018,” the court wrote in a ruling dated Monday, according to the news outlet.

After the court approved the extradition, local media reported that McAfee was found dead in his prison cell in Barcelona. 

Spanish newspaper El País, citing the country’s Department of Justice, reported that “everything points to a suicide.” 

Authorities tried to perform resuscitation measures but were unable to save his life.  

News of his death was first reported by Spanish newspaper El Mundo

McAfee, who created the antivirus software named after him, was arrested in Spain in October.

McAfee allegedly did not file tax returns between 2014 and 2018 “despite receiving considerable income” after earning millions in consulting work, speaking events, promoting cryptocurrency and selling the rights to his story for a documentary.

A Tennessee federal court charged him with tax evasion and willfully failing to file tax returns. McAfee faces up to 25 years in prison for tax evasion and five years for willfully failing to file a tax return.

In its decision, the Spanish court referred to the offense that occurred between 2016 and 2018, according to AFP. 

McAfee told a virtual hearing earlier this month that the charges were politically motivated, according to The Associated Press.

He was separately charged in a Manhattan federal court earlier this year for alleged fraud and money laundering charges in a cryptocurrency investment scheme.

McAfee and his executive adviser Jimmy Gale Watson Jr. were both accused of using McAfee’s Twitter account to spread information on cryptocurrency investments to hundreds of thousands of followers and raking in more than $13 million from the scheme between 2017 and 2018.

The punishment for the alleged scheme is at least 50 years behind bars.

Updated 4:15 p.m.

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