Updated 3:30 p.m. ET, Thursday, December 6
Retired antivirus software pioneer turned international fugitive and murder suspect John McAfee was arrested in Guatemala City on Wednesday evening and is currently being detained by authorities there for illegally entering the country, according to Reuters and McAfee himself, who has apparently managed to finagle a computer from a charitable guard to resume his blogging about his strange, recent life as an exile.
McAfee, 67, has since November 11 been sought by authorities in Belize for questioning in the murder of Gregory Faull, a man described as McAfee’s neighbor in the country.
McAfee, who by his own admission led a raucous life of drug use, womanizing and material accumulation in the U.S. for the past quarter century or more as his antivirus software company McAfee, Inc., became immensely profitable and was acquired by Intel, moved to Belize in 2008. He has reportedly spent the subsequent years there up until now attempting to impose his own brand of vigilante justice and prosperity on the local populace of the village nearby his home, as a lengthy Wired profile explains.
Following the murder of Faull, McAfee fled police in Belize, claiming they were corrupt and attempting to use the pretext of the murder investigation to arrest him or worse. McAfee gave interviews to U.S. media outlets and blogged about his evasion of authorities, including using disguises.
But all that is a memory now, as McAfee sits and documents about his new reality in a jail cell. McAfee has actually been quite prolific in custody, publishing four new posts from jail so far on his official blog, hosted at “WhoIsMcAfee.com” (which also includes material for an upcoming graphic novel about his life in Belize).
In the first post, which went up at 5:24 a.m. GMT, McAfee clarifies his situation:
I am in jail in Guatemala. Vastly superior to Belize jails. I asked for a computer and one magically appeared. The coffee is also excellent.
Only time will tell what will happen. No one has a crystal ball. However, I would be truly shocked if I did not conduct the press conference tomorrow as I had originally planned.
In his latest post, which went up at quarter to 11 GMT, McAfee explains how he is not suicidal as a result of his predicament and still has a sense of humor, attempting to play practical jokes with his benevolent captors:
“I am using the computer of one of the wardens, or whatever title is used here. He is a sweet man and a gentleman. The world is heavilly populated with gentle people. He makes me coffee and tells tender stories about his life. He is a good companion. I believe I could spend weeks in the desert with him as a sole companion without once becoming irritated. His name is Gino Ennati.
Everyone here is nice. And sympathetic. So far, my experience on the inside of this establishment has worn away a bit of my natural cynicism and added a measure of hope for humanity. Only Ennati speaks any English, and then not enough to catch much humor, so my joking has fallen largely on bewildered but kindly faces.”
Meanwhile, McAfee’s famous Guatemalan lawyer and former Attorney General Telésforo Guerra, also reportedly the uncle of McAfee’s traveling companion and lover Samantha Vanegas, has secured a stay order temporarily halting his extradition from Guatemala.
McAfee also revealed on his blog that he attempted to seek extradition to the U.S. from the embassy in Guatemala. A spokesperson for the U.S. embassy in Guatemala told TPM that the staff there was “awaiting further guidance from Washington,” and could not comment on McAfee’s case directly at this time, but that “generally, Americans are subject to laws of country in which they are traveling or residing.”
Correction: This article originally misstated times of McAfee’s blog posts as Eastern, when it fact they were Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). We have since updated the errors and regret them.