THE FOUNDER OF SECURITY FIRM McAfee is seeking legal assistance after he was arrested on a bogus weapons charge at his home in Belize by the country's Gang Suppression Unit (GSU).
The antivirus creator John McAfee said in a report by local news channel News 5 Belize that the arrest at his research facility in Orange Walk was because he failed to bribe a local political boss in the district where he lived.
According to McAfee's account, the GSU took sledge hammers to every door when they were not locked, killed his dog, took his passport and handcuffed him before they arrested him and held him for 14 hours.
McAfee said that one GSU officer took all of his firearm licenses used for security on the compound and put them in his vest. However, when he took them out to check the firearms, McAfee said one was missing.
Photocopies of the licenses retained by McAfee meant that police were unable to hold him any longer, but it took the intervention of the American embassy to get him released.
McAfee expressed his disgust at the way he had been treated, saying that the country is "clearly a military dictatorship where people are allowed to go and harass citizens based on rumour alone and treat them as if they are guilty before any evidence whatsoever is obtained".
He was particularly angry because he had previously given two million dollars in gifts to the police departments in Orange Walk, San Pedro, Belize City, to the village of Carmelita, and the City of Orange Walk over the years.
Regardless of how he had contributed to the area, McAfee said that he didn't invest in politics or any political party.
"I have a fair amount of money and not much to do. So I spend it where I think it will do good. And I don't ever invest in politics. I don't donate to any political party; I don't have any political affiliations," he said.
Following the news, security expert and cheif researcher at F-secure Mikko Hypponen tweeted a warning to other Internet security founders:
Hey Peter Norton, here's a tip: don't go to Belize.— Mikko Hypponen (@mikko) May 4, 2012
McAfee declined to comment on the news, telling The INQUIRER, "John McAfee is a private individual with no connection to McAfee."
No charges were lodged against John McAfee. µ
Sign up for INQbot – a weekly roundup of the best from the INQ