John McAfee in trouble again. Already in prison in Spain for tax evasion, the businessman was indicted for fraud and money laundering by the Manhattan federal court, accused with his bodyguard Jimmy Gale Watson of criminal association: they would have suggested the purchase of alternative cryptocurrencies to the million people who follow McAfee on Twitter, making mountains of dollars. The cyber-security pioneer, 75 years old, founder of the antivirus giant that bears his name, on the one hand he would have collected 11 million dollars from startups in the sector to support new cryptocurrencies without revealing it to followers then, after waiting for the value to rise, he would sell them for another 2 million: a simple and effective scheme, which the two deny.
My team examined every opportunity by looking at management, business plan and potential: we were paid in the same currencies that collapsed. The allegations are inflated, McAfee defended himself via Twitter. My confidence in these currencies clarified by Docademic, the one I believed in the most: even when the value plummeted, I didn’t sell. The businessman was arrested in October at Barcelona airport – he was accused of failing to file a tax return from 2014 to 2018 – and may now be extradited to the United States; Watson, a former Navy Seal, was arrested in Texas on Thursday and, his lawyer clarified, is waiting to exercise his rights in court.
Son of an English woman and an American soldier who committed suicide, a youth marked by alcohol and drugs, McAfee became a Silicon Valley legend in the 1980s, making the first commercial antivirus and creating a billionaire market on its own. After leaving the company in 1994, its assets reached 100 million in 2007 and today it stands at 4 million, a decline due to the crisis, but also to the endless troubles with justice. The first was in 2012, when his American neighbor was shot to the head in Belize, where McAfee lived with a 16-year-old former prostitute: when the police tried to interrogate him he fled the country, insulting the government that was asking for money.
He escaped to Guatemala, where he was arrested for crossing the border clandestinely. In 2019, a Florida court sentenced him to pay 25 million for the death of his neighbor: he refused, claiming he was a victim of extortion. A few months later he was arrested again in the Dominican Republic, this time for illegal possession of firearms. Finally came the financial crimes, which could now keep him behind bars for the rest of his days.
March 6, 2021 (change March 6, 2021 | 22:07)