John McAfee, wanted in the death of another American in the Central American nation of Belize, denies killing anyone — and insists it's the local police who want him dead.
"They will kill me if they find me," McAfee told reporter Joshua Davis by telephone, quoted in a piece posted last night (Nov. 12) on the website of Wired magazine.
Yesterday, the news broke that McAfee, who founded the anti-virus company named after him in 1987, was wanted for questioning in the killing of fellow expatriate Gregory Faull on the island of Ambergris Caye over the weekend.
"They mistook him for me. They got the wrong house," McAfee told Davis.
The tech blog Gizmodo and the local Belizean newspaper the San Pedro Sun said McAfee and Faull, who were neighbors, had quarreled over McAfee's thuggish security men and menacing dogs.
On Saturday, hours before Faull was shot dead, McAfee told Davis that the dogs had been poisoned by unknown parties the night before. But McAfee insisted to Davis that Faull was not to blame.
"This is not something he would ever do," McAfee said. "He's an angry sort of guy, but he would never hurt a dog."
Police raided McAfee's house Sunday morning after Faull's housekeeper found him dead. McAfee wasn't home, but he told Davis he was nearby — hiding in a hole in the sand on the beach, with a piece of cardboard over his head as camouflage.
"Under no circumstances am I going to willingly talk to the police in this country," McAfee told Davis yesterday. "They will kill me, there is no question."
In April, a Belizean SWAT team raided McAfee's home on the country's mainland, looking for illegal drugs and guns. The police did discover weapons and pharmaceuticals, but the charges were dropped after everything on the premises was found to be legal.
McAfee was forced out of the company he founded in 1992, after it had gone public, and walked away with a fortune in stock. He lost money in the 2008 stock market and real estate crashes, sold all his property in the United States and moved to Belize.
Jeff Wise, the freelance journalist who wrote two recent Gizmodo articles on McAfee and who has been following the eccentric millionaire for years, told the television show "CBS This Morning" today (Nov. 13) that many of McAfee's former associates feared him after leaving Belize.
"I talked to people who had been very close to him," Wise said. "Many of them had left his entourage and told me that they were afraid for their lives, even back in the United States."
As for McAfee's next move, Wise pointed out that Ambergris Caye is only 30 miles from the Mexican border.
"He could be anywhere except Antarctica," Wise told CBS.