By Kelli Kennedy - Thursday, December 13, 2012 - 0 Comments
MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Anti-virus software founder John McAfee said Thursday that U.S. authorities…
MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Anti-virus software founder John McAfee said Thursday that U.S. authorities have made no efforts to question him since he arrived in Miami after weeks of evading Belizean authorities who want to ask him about the death of his neighbour.
“Why would they want to question me, about what?” a tired-looking but sharply dressed McAfee said Thursday from the steps of his South Beach hotel. The multimillionaire was characteristically chatty and seemed to enjoy posing for pictures with tourists and signing autographs while talking about his two girlfriends and the alleged corruption in Belize that forced him to flee.
McAfee was deported from Guatemala after sneaking in illegally from Belize, where police want to question him in connection with the death of a U.S. expatriate who lived near him on an island off Belize’s coast. U.S officials said there was no active arrest warrant for McAfee that would justify taking him into custody. Continue…
By The Associated Press - Wednesday, December 12, 2012 at 9:04 PM - 0 Comments
GUATEMALA CITY – Anti-virus software founder John McAfee was released from a detention centre…
GUATEMALA CITY – Anti-virus software founder John McAfee was released from a detention centre Wednesday and was escorted by immigration officials and police trucks to the Guatemala City airport, where he was put on a commercial flight bound for Miami.
McAfee sat in a coach-class seat on the flight, which took off at midafternoon.
The escort to the airport, accompanied by a throng of journalists and two police trucks with sirens blaring, marked the last chapter for McAfee’s strange, monthlong odyssey to avoid police questioning about the killing of an American expatriate in neighbouring Belize.
“McAfee entered the country illegally,” immigration service spokesman Fernando Lucero said. “Guatemala is expelling him. Since his country of origin is the United States, Guatemala is expelling him to the United States.”
In one of the most highly publicized flights from police questioning since O.J. Simpson led police on televised low-speed car chase, McAfee constantly blogged and spoke with reporters about his life on the lam.
Bystanders in Guatemala City stopped to stare at the passing police convoy, and people at the airport crowded around the immigration truck carrying McAfee, straining to take pictures of him with their cellphones.
Dressed in a black suit and white shirt, McAfee said: “I’m free. I’m going to America.”
He suggested his weeklong detention in Guatemala for entering the country clandestinely had taken its toll on him.
“All I can tell you is I’m 10 years older, and I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m just going to Miami,” he said.
McAfee was detained last week for immigration violations after he sneaked into Guatemala from Belize, where authorities sought to question him about the murder of a neighbour. He apparently crossed at a rural, unguarded spot along the border, but a judge this week ruled his detention illegal and ordered him freed.
His 20-year-old Belizean girlfriend, Samantha Vanegas, who has accompanied him since he went on the run, was not with him on the ride to the airport, though she later showed up at the terminal. Known as “Sam,” she was seen earlier Wednesday leaving the detention facility crying, after taking breakfast to McAfee.
On the blog he has been posting on for the last two weeks, McAfee wrote that “I have been forcibly separated from Sam,” but claimed she would be coming to the United States later.
McAfee said Sunday that he wanted to return to the United States and “settle down to whatever normal life” he can. The 67-year-old said “I simply would like to live comfortably day by day, fish, swim, enjoy my declining years.”
Police in Belize want to question McAfee in the fatal shooting of a U.S. expatriate who lived near McAfee’s home on a Belizean island in November.
The creator of the McAfee antivirus program has denied involvement in the killing. Belizean authorities have urged him to show up for questioning, but have not lodged any formal charges against him.
McAfee is an acknowledged practical joker who has dabbled in yoga, ultra-light aircraft and the production of herbal medications. He has said he feared he would be killed if he turned himself in to Belizean authorities.
Belize’s prime minister, Dean Barrow, has expressed doubts about McAfee’s mental state, saying: “I don’t want to be unkind to the gentleman, but I believe he is extremely paranoid, even bonkers.”
The British-born McAfee said Sunday that returning to the United States “is my only hope now.” But he later added: “I would be happy to go to England. I have dual citizenship.”
He was in hiding in Belize for weeks after police pronounced him a person of interest in the killing of Gregory Viant Faull. McAfee acknowledges that his dogs were bothersome and that Faull had complained about them days before some of the dogs were poisoned, but denies killing Faull. Faull’s home was a couple of houses down from McAfee’s compound on Ambergris Caye, off Belize’s Caribbean coast.
McAfee has led an eccentric life since he sold his stake in the software company named after him in the early 1990s and moved to Belize about three years ago to lower his taxes.
He told The New York Times in 2009 that he had lost all but $4 million of his $100 million fortune in the U.S. financial crisis. However, a story on the Gizmodo website quoted him as describing that claim as “not very accurate at all.”
By Jesse Brown - Thursday, December 6, 2012 at 3:36 PM - 0 Comments
The above Vice magazine headline is the most accurate reporting they’ve produced since they’ve been on the John McAfee story. It may be the only accurate reporting they’ve done. And yet, it’s still dishonest—a deflection, an attempt to evade responsibility and accountability.
On Monday, Vice posted a story titled “WE ARE WITH JOHN MCAFEE RIGHT NOW, SUCKERS.” It was a middle-finger pointed not just at their own readers, but at any rival media source following, from a distance, the curious case of the fugitive anti-virus software king (since apprehended). As proof of their coup, Vice included a photo of editor-in-chief Rocco Castoro, posing gangsta tough next to a weirdly laid-back John McAfee. The message: the world is looking for this guy, but we’re actually hanging out with him, and we’re not telling you where. But they did, by accident. The photo included meta-data revealing their precise location, which a reader quickly pinpointed as “next to the pool at Nana Juana Hotel Marina and Yacht Club” in Guatemala. McAfee was soon arrested. Oops.
It was a pretty big boner to pull, but what came next was worse. Before his arrest, McAfee claimed that the geotag data was wrong, that it had been deliberately altered to throw authorities off his trail. Vice backed him up, even as they re-posted the pic with the metadata scrubbed.
McAfee has since admitted, on his own blog, that this was a lie. He blamed the geodata leak on “an unseasoned technician at Vice headquarters” and called the lie about it a necessary “misdirection.” Then he apologized, which is more than what Vice has done.
Rather than take any responsibility, Vice responded with a hipster shrug and a sleazy tease. Though he indeed might not know what the fuck is going on, editor Rocco Castoro still assures readers that he’s having an “absolutely epic” experience. He’s been “blown away” by it, and “in the coming weeks, once we wrap up our documentary and corresponding magazine piece, you will find out exactly what that means.”
Give the man a Pulitzer.
I can’t feign surprise at just how badly Vice has goofed up here, or at how odiously they’ve responded to their own incompetence. I still think of them as a fun, mean, trashy Montreal newspaper, rife with typos and porn stars posing naked in street wear ads. But that was a long time ago. Their foundation myth—their humble beginnings as a druggy gambit launched on a Quebec welfare grant—lasted for but a moment. Soon Vice was awash in dot-com cash, and not long after that, they became a bloated youth marketing agency posing as a magazine.
As a ballsy antidote to all that is fake and pompous in TV news, Vice’s foray into journalism can seem exciting. It’s fine that they don’t truck with any of the news business’s self-important window dressing. This is an unregulated trade, far from a profession, and Vice is free to do whatever they like and call it journalism. They can accidentally rat out their own subject, become part of the story they are covering, lie about what they did and what they know even as they pimp out a promise that they know much more. It’s all good showbiz, and they have our attention. What they lack is credibility.
Follow Jesse on Twitter @JesseBrown