Antivirus software pioneer John McAfee is dealing with a few bugs in his own life right now. The expatriate is on the run from the police in Belize, where he has lived since 2008. They say he is a "person of interest" in the murder of his neighbor; he contends that he fears for his life if he is taken into police custody.
Communicating with the outside world by way of a series of covert dispatches to Wired editor Joshua Davis, McAfee claimed that he was hiding from police because "they will kill me if they find me." Police want to speak with him regarding the murder of his neighbor, 52-year-old Gregory Faull, also an American expatriate. Faull's body was found Sunday morning by his housekeeper. He had been shot in the back of the head. His laptop and iPhone were reported missing. McAfee told Wired that he eluded the police who were searching his property by burying himself in the sand and covering his head with a cardboard box so he could breathe.
McAfee's journey from freewheeling adventure capitalist (as a young man, he traveled through Mexico, living out of a van and making jewelry that he sold to tourists) to millionaire software mogul to 67-year-old tattooed, gun-toting, Central American jungle-dwelling yoga aficionado was outlined in detail in an in-depth feature that appeared on Gizmodo just days before Faull's murder.
McAfee's current troubles apparently are an amalgam of ongoing tensions with Belizean law enforcement, a long-running dispute with Faull and the eccentric software founder's own paranoia.
The Gizmodo article described a laundry list of questionable behavior by McAfee in Belize, including associating with local gangsters, hiring a rogue cop to be the head of his security, keeping a lab stocked with chemistry equipment on the banks of a jungle river that feeds into Mexico and keeping company with underage women.
In April, property owned by McAfee was raided by Belize's Gang Suppression Squad which charged him with running a methamphetamine lab and illegal arms possession. The charges were later dropped. Since then, McAfee had thought the police were harassing him.
When four of McAfee's 11 dogs were poisoned on Friday night, he put the blame on Belize authorities, according to an AP report. They had, after all, shot and killed one of his dogs during the earlier raid on his property.