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Tipsheet

It Turns Out John McAfee Was Broke When He Died

AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, File

When John McAfee was found dead in his cell last month, reportedly due to suicide by hanging, the Internet was quick to doubt that. McAfee died in his prison cell in Spain, not long after a court ruled he could be extradited back to the United States. There's been another update, though. The man who founded the anti-virus protection company, and was once a millionaire, died broke, as reported by Keith Griffith with the Daily Mail. 

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The piece also points to McAfee's tweets. In fact, the pinned tweet to McAfee's account, from June 16 claims "I have nothing."

Such insight about McAfee's financial situation comes from an exclusive between Griffith and Mark Eglinton, the author of "No Domain: The John McAfee Tapes," which comes out in December. The book was initially supposed to be a collaboration, but McAfee told Eglinton he couldn't pay the agreed to fee, which Eglinton told Griffith wasn't much. Thus, Eglinton believes McAfee was indeed penniless when he died.

"I don't doubt that if he could have helped he would have," Eglinton did tell Griffith though. 

He also told Griffith that the collaboration ended after McAfee insisted the publisher pay him in cryptocurrency, but then wouldn't provide an address to be mailed a contract.

Eglinton points to McAfee's spending on "bizarre" mansions as to how his $100 million from selling McAfee went so quickly:

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Eglinton strongly refuted prior reports claiming that McAfee lost his fortune on bad stock picks during the Great Recession. 'We got a lot into where he spent his money over the years,' he said. 

'He had his money in very safe investments, but he built houses, absolutely bizarre properties,' the Scottish author said. 'Some of them, he never slept a night in the property.'

McAfee owned, at various points, large mansions and compounds in Belize, Texas, Colorado, Hawaii and Tennessee, among other locations. 

He sold some of those properties at a tremendous loss as property values contracted in the Great Recession, perhaps due to liquidity issues.

McAfee's compound in Woodland Park, Colorado, for example, included a 10,000-square-foot main house that was fully furnished with antiques from around the world. It was valued at more than $25 million but sold at auction for a mere $5.72 million to a Chicago commodities trader in 2007. 

Eglinton said McAfee told him: 'The $100 million I got out of McAfee [Antivirus], that goes very quickly.' 

There are other signs that McAfee could have committed suicide. As Landon reported earlier this month, "McAfee Had a Failed Suicide Attempt Months Before His Death."

When McAfee's death was first revealed, many were skeptical of the cause of death, noting the similarities between McAfee and Jeffrey Epstein, who knew McAfee. There were also tweets from McAfee emphasizing that if he was found dead it would not be by his own hand.

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McAfee's widow, Janice McAfee, disputes that her husband died of suicide. She laid out her reasons alongside her lawyer in a press conference which took place not long after her husband's death, in front of the prison where he died. 

This revelation from Eglinton does not change her suspicions, however. She feels even more strongly that her husband did not commit suicide, though, as revealed in a series of tweets. 

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Griffith explains that the criminal charges against McAfee will be dropped as he is dead, but that the government can still go after his assets via suing his state. Spanish authorities must provide a certificate of death before the civil forfeiture action process can proceed. 

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