Thanks to San Pedro Sun for the interview.
John McAfee, the inventor of the McAfee AntiVirus Scan demands an apology from the Government of Belize after members of the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) stormed into his estate located on the outskirts of Orange Walk Town. The 66 year old expatriate was the subject of an aggressive search and 14-hour long detention by police that eventually required US Embassy intervention to secure his release.
According to Police, present at the time of the search were John McAfee, his 17-year-old Belizean girlfriend, four security guards, 33 year old Emerson Michael who claimed to be the Chief of Security, 23 year old Emerson Dominguez, 46 year old Austin Allen and 23 year old Tyron Morales who are all Belizean nationals. Also present was Michael’s common-law wife Princesa Ericson. McAfee explained however, that he was handcuffed with 14 other people for over 14 hours.
While McAfee said they showed him a search warrant, he did not get a chance to read it. Police claim that during the search ten firearms were found. The firearms were seven 12 gauge pump action shotguns (one of which had a scope), one 12 gauge single action shotgun, one Taurus 9mm pistol and one 9mm CZ pistol. Five air rifles with scopes resembling sniper rifles that use 6.26 mm slugs were also found along with two hundred and seventy 12 gauge cartridges, thirty 9mm rounds and twenty .38 rounds. According to McAfee, the firearms belong to the security company his business owns.
The GSU reports that all the firearms and rounds of ammunition were scattered over the premises including inside the vehicles and houses that were unoccupied. According to the GSU, McAfee produced a company firearm license for all the weapons and ammunition with the exception of one firearm that is licensed to Tyron Morales and a 9mm CZ pistol with serial number A796245.
The lawsuits are merely to call the “attention,” of the authorities said McAfee. “If we don’t get any satisfaction in terms of disciplinary action or an apology then we will file a very major lawsuit,” said McAfee, who was left to sit in handcuffs in view of the public including his business partners, residents of the area and tourists. As a direct result of the incident, over 29,000 articles have been written and posted on the internet about McAfee’s ordeal with the GSU. “I am not asking for much. Give me an apology. You have stormed into my residence; I should be pissed off and I am pissed off. I was doing nothing wrong. It was a bunch of rumors that was unsubstantiated which the government should have checked out before all of this… that made me look ridiculous so of course I am pissed off,” explained McAfee.
The GSU says that as part of the search, they also found a laboratory where it appears that antibiotics are being produced. A GSU press release states that “Analysts at the Forensic Laboratory, and personnel from the Ministry of Health were taken to inspect the facility and samples of an alleged antibiotic apparently being manufactured at the laboratory were taken for analysis. The Ministry of Health has already confirmed that no license has been granted to McAfee or any of his agents to manufacture antibiotics in Belize.” McAfee explained that when the laboratory was operational (now closed for over 18 months) it had been used to produce antiseptics, and not antibiotics. The Director of Health Services, Dr. Michael Pitts, indicated that neither the Ministry nor the Chief Pharmacist in Belize had knowledge of such operation conducted by McAfee in Belize. Dr. Pitts has stated that both terms “antibiotics” or “antiseptics” are a matter of “technicality”, but McAfee says, “If they can prove in court that they are the same I will eat my shoe!” In Belize producing antibiotics without a license is an offence under the Antibiotics Act in Belize. A decision as to whether or not charges against McAfee will be issued will be taken by the Ministry within the next few days when the report from the Forensic Analyst becomes available.
The raid on McAfee’s property was conducted jointly by a total of 42 GSU officers, BDF and Belize Special Assignment Group (BSAG). According to the GSU, before entering McAfee’s premises they announced their presence and purpose of search stating it was for “drugs and illegal firearms”. They further stated that the operation was based solely on information received about suspected illegal activities being conducted on McAfee’s property. However, McAfee believes that the raid was solely based on “rumors” by past “disgruntled employees” and to settle a vendetta by a “local politician” whom he would not give a donation to during recent elections.
McAfee has donated several times to the Ministry of National Security. In 2009 McAfee made a donation of a vessel worth over $1 million to the Belize National Coast Guard. He has also donated to local police departments on different instances. In 2008 McAfee donated two All Terrain Vehicles (ATV’s) totaling $40,000 in value to the San Pedro Police Department. In addition, more recently in 2011, he donated a number of equipment to the SP Police valued at over $3,500.
- McAfee antivirus developer arrested by Belizean government on false charges while researching natural herbs for drug-resistant bacteria (revolutioninmedia.com)
- McAfee founder seized in Belize (caribbean360.com)
- Anti-gang task force arrests John McAfee in Belize (geek.com)
- Were McAfee Raid Tactics Born in the Third World or the U.S.? (reason.com)
- McAfee, Belize-based anti-virus software founder talks about his arrest (thenextweb.com)
- McAfee Founder Arrested in Belize on ‘Bogus’ Charges (pcmag.com)
- Anti-Virus Founder John McAfee Forcefully Arrested in Belize [WTFriday] (gizmodo.com)
- McAfee Founder Claims Persecution in Belize (abcnews.go.com)
- McAfee founder claims persecution in Belize (mercurynews.com)
- Antivirus Founder John McAfee Arrested in Belize (webpronews.com)
- Antivirus Pioneer John McAfee Arrested In Belize (news.slashdot.org)
- John McAfee, antivirus pioneer, arrested by Belize police (networkworld.com)
- Antivirus Boss John McAfee’s Home Raided In Belize (techfleece.com)
- McAfee Antivirus founder accuses Belize police of wrongful imprisonment (theverge.com)