Did John McAfee, the founder of McAfee anti-virus software, kill his neighbor in a drug-fueled rage in Belize? Police in Belize want to know just that. They are looking to question McAfee in the murder of American expatriate Gregory Faull, who was gunned down Saturday night at his home in San Pedro Town on the island of Ambergris Caye, according to official reports.
Faull was found dead from a gunshot wound just days after he filing an official complaint against McAfee for “roguish behavior.”
Details are still emerging, but reports are that the 67-year-old American computer programmer had moved to Belize, after losing most of his software fortune, and gotten deeply involved in MDPV, a psychoactive drug, often called “bath salts.” MDPV was recently made illegal in the US, but remains legal in Belize. It belongs to a class of drugs called cathinones, which are commonly know as ‘bath salts,’ because, in their street form, they resemble bath salts commonly used for bathing.
McAfee has admitted to a fascination with psychoactive stimulants. “I’m a huge fan of MDPV,” he wrote on a Russian drug message board. “I think it’s the finest drug ever conceived, not just for the indescribable hypersexuality, but also for the smooth euphoria and mild comedown.” That euphoria may have waned.
The official police report appears in Gizmodo, but Marco Vidal, head of the national police force’s Gang Suppression Unit, is quoted as saying that McAfee is a prime suspect in Faull’s death.
Wired reports that McAfee maintains his innocence, and refuses to surrender to police: “You can say I’m paranoid about it but they will kill me, there is no question,” he reportedly said, “I will not turn myself in.”
McAfee is the founder of the Silicon Valley startup that evolved into McAfee Associates, and became a giant in the field of antivirus software, netting McAfee a fortune of about $100 million.
This story has broken in several waves. Before the reports of Faull’s death, reporter Jeff Wise broke the original story of McAfee’s seemingly eccentric Belize lifestyle for Gizmodo, and his trouble with the local police.
Wise reported further on McAfee’s online postings about drugs and his fascination with MDPV in a later issue of Gizmodo.
After detailing his two visits with the tech pioneer, the most recent of which was in April, for Fox News, Wise reportedly said that he wouldn’t be surprised to find McAfee “dead by the end of the year.”
Salon reveals that McAfee has posted details about his story on a private message board under the screen name “Darkness Falls,” calling his tale one of “intrigue and deception, involving great risks and dangers…Or, perhaps…a tale of paranoia in which innocuous events are misinterpreted by an unstable mind. My mind.”
Stay tuned as the story unfolds.