Dateline   |  January 18, 2013

Trouble in Paradise, Part 7

Keith Morrison and the Dateline team go to Belize to search for the missing McAfee and have a revealing chat with one of his former girlfriends.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> american millionaire john mcafee is on the run, hiding out somewhere in the wilds of belize. his neighbor greg faull has been murdered and now police want to question mcafee in the case. the mystery is growing as thick as the jungle. here again, keith morrison .

>> you might think a person of interest in the homicide case especially one that seemed to be on his cell phone practically 24/7 would be easy to find for a 21st century police force , but that, it seems, is not what belize has.

>> a week after john mcafee disappears, it still took belizean police ten minutes to get into his garage.

>> there are police in there, armed police with a rifle and they're looking through the house as they do on a regular basis or have been since the beginning of this expect i don't think there's any expectation, maybe that he's going to be here, but they're looking. though the nosy reporter was clearly unwelcome, i wasn't shooed away, either, any more than was the world's brass all looking for john mcafee . so like martin sheen 's character in the classic "apocalypse now" we took to the jungle.

>> he was close. he was real close.

>> searching for a renegade genius who somehow split society's bonds and became a law unto himself.

>> are you an assassin.

>> unlike marlon brando 's current curse, john mcafee did not hide in the shadows.

>> john mcafee is joining us now by telephone.

>> embraced the media spotlight, in fact, he seemed to live for it.

>> we are living near a dictatorship where the legal system is subservient to the cabinet.

>> if his blog was to be believed, john mcafee was hiding in plain sight, cleverly disguised as a tourist or street vendor . we made arrangements with middlemen, go-betweens, go here, they told us. right there, but as each time arrived and passed for a promised secret rendezvous with mcafee , international man of mystery he was not there.

>> of course, john might not be on the island at all. the only person that seemed always to know how to reach him and speak for him was mcafee 's former lover amy herbert. at 16, amy was the first of many young women who lived on mcafee 's property and shared his bed.

>> a lot of guests here? girls? not much other company? no.

>> now 18, amy has a disconcerting air of worldliness. she also has john mcafee 's trust.

>> you want to go from the front door?

>> so it was with his permission, she said that amy agreed to show us around his beach estate.

>> here's the house.

>> nice.

>> and everything from the soaring ceiling to the leatherbound books to the spectacular ocean view spoke of money and power.

>> we would always snorkel, almost every weekend and he'd get his tan, be in the sun, enjoying the view and everything.

>> but said amy , after that police raid back in april, everything changed.

>> that's when he started being paranoid and he just kept inside and was, like, he got really pale and he said he misses the sun.

>> given mcafee 's bizarre behavior after the murder of greg faull some people wondered if he was using drugs again.

>> did you guys every do drugs in here or anywhere.

>> no. he never accepted any type of drugs on the property.

>> though amy did see him doing chemical experiments in the kitchen. i said what are you doing? he said i'm working on some chemicals and stuff. he said it was for research. he said never to touch these, taste it, eat it anything. he said it's poison.

>> did you have any idea what it was?

>> i didn't have any idea.

>> he wouldn't tell you?

>> he would not tell me anything about it.

>> whatever mcafee was making in his kitchen it turned into a brownish, powdery substance when he baked it in the oven.

>> what did he do with this stuff?

>> he would save it in little packages.

>> you don't know what happened to those packages?

>> i used to see them around the house. he said never to touch them.

>> remember those postings to the drug discussion forum bluelight promoting stuffmonger's work with mdpv or bath salts though mcafee later claimed those postings were a hoax, according to amy , he seemed to be serious about the chemistry experiments.

>> i do remember that he talked about bluelight. i do remember him writing about it.

>> it was then that her strange relationship with john mcafee had its strangest moment.

>> i was angry, whatever, and i was ready to shoot him and for some reason i missed.

>> you tried to shoot him.

>> uh-huh. i also tried to cut his throat, but he just said -- he just leaned against the wall and said, do it. i couldn't do it.

>> and you staid together after that.

>> oh, yeah. he loved me more, i guess. he slept with one eye open. fortunately for mcafee , that romance ended without bloodshed and fortunately for amy , she got a house on the mainland as a parting gift and though mcafee has a new number one girl now, it was amy who finally helped us get john mcafee on the phone.

>> how are you doing?

>> i'm doing all right, sir, under the circumstances.

>> mcafee wouldn't say where he was hiding, but he did hint he was close by.

>> i did notice one of my boats, and --

>> yeah. we were in one of your boats, you're absolutely right.

>> was he watching us? were the police watching us, too, hoping we might lead them to him?

>> listen, can you tell us anything that would clear up some questions about what happened over that course of that weekend when your neighbor was killed?

>> you know, i have no idea what happened to my neighbor. none. my dogs were poisoned. i still believe that someone did that.

>> you just see no option for going in and having a chat with them, huh?

>> we traveled a long distance with that phone call and we'd heard nothing that hadn't been said before until mcafee apparently on a whim had news.

>> i'm offering a $25,000 belize dollar reward for anyone who can find the killer of mr. faull.

>> wow! sincere? hard to know. what appeared certain is that no one was going to find out who killed greg faull by talking to john mcafee on the phone. so next, we decided to double back to the american ex-pat who knew both men and seemed to know more about this case than the police were willing or able to reveal.

>>> coming up -- police are about to revolley one thing.

>> we didn't label him a suspect at this point because there is nothing that ties him to this murder.

>> a turn in the case when "dateline" continues. na na