This story has been updated to include comments from John McAfee.
Crypto wild man, antivirus pioneer, and 2020 presidential candidate John McAfee tweeted a dire pronouncement this afternoon. “We are, today, at war,” he says in a video. He is sitting on the deck of a boat, drink in hand. American flags wave in the sunshine behind him.
In the roughly two-minute long clip, McAfee admits to not paying taxes for the past eight years, and claims that the IRS has convened a grand jury in the state of Tennessee to charge him, his wife, and four of his campaign workers with “unspecified IRS crimes of a felonious nature.” “I am running my campaign in exile, on this boat, for the duration,” he says. “I will not allow them to imprison me and shut my voice down.”
BREAKER reached McAfee by phone a few hours later. He said that “multiple sources” informed him of the grand jury action, though he was uncertain exactly what the charges against him are. He said he planned to be at sea for two years. “Obviously, two years is a long time and none of us are good fisherman, so we will have to eat, go in every few months to collect food and fuel, and possibly maintenance.”
He declined to specify where he was currently located, saying, “Do you think that the American government is beyond going into international waters to collect somebody?” When asked what it was like to be a fugitive from the IRS, he replied, “I’ve been a fugitive from almost the entire world my whole life because, my friend, I live outside the box and I tell the truth as I see it.”
McAfee has long been open about his tax-free lifestyle. In an interview with BREAKER magazine last year, McAfee said that his friends paid for everything—including his rent, food, cars, and yachts—which meant he didn’t have to pay taxes.
A spokesperson for the IRS said the agency is not legally allowed to comment. McAfee, for his part, said he is unafraid of the feds. “Do I sound scared to you?” he asked, laughing. “No, of course I’m not scared of these people.”