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#437030 - 05/03/12 08:01 AM John McAfee Roughed Up By GSU
Marty Offline
John McAfee is a wealthy US investor who has retired in Belize and splits his time between homes in San Pedro and Orange Walk.

You may know has name from the McAfee Virus Scan, one of the first anti-virus programs for personal computers.

But neither his famous name nor his status as a wealthy investor spared the 66 year old from the indignity of an aggressive GSU search of his Orange Walk Estate on Monday morning.

The estate is just right of the Tower Hill Toll Bridge at the entrance to Orange Walk.

The search started at 6:00 am - and he says the first thing the GSU did was shoot and kill one of his dogs, Caramelo. After that, he says they broke down doors and ransacked the nine houses on the estate.

The unit was looking for weapons - and McAfee had plenty of them: 7 shotguns and two nine millimeter pistols - which he says are licensed to his personal security company. But, it didn't matter, McAfee says he and 12 employees were still handcuffed for an extended period.

He was brought in those handcuffs to Belize City and released on Tuesday at 2:00 am - without any charge being brought against him. After his 14-hour ordeal, he told us via phone from San Pedro about it:

John McaFee - Raided by GSU (Via Telephone)
"At 6 o'clock in the morning, the GSU - I think the entire contingent - and a number of BDF soldiers - a total of 65 in all - surrounded the compound, burst through the gates, and put all of us in handcuffs. They said that they had a warrant to search the premises. I remained in handcuffs for 14 hours, outside the whole time, without food. None of us had food. There were about 12 people who were handcuffed which included a number of women, and BDF broke down doors, confiscated property - including my American passport - and at the end of the day, they charged me with a firearm violation. The GSU was brutal and uncooperative. They broke down doors; they completely ransacked many of the houses on the compound. Items are missing. I am sorry; this is unacceptable in a country that is supposed to be civilized in a democracy. I have donated to the police department alone, over 2 million dollars' worth of goods in the past 2 years. I have done a tremendous amount of work to clean up Carmelita, to provide food for school children - any number of things. And to be treated this way, after I have acted in such a fashion, makes me think twice about investing anything else here."

And while he is accusing the GSU, that unit is making no apologies - in fact they are pointing the finger right back at him.

The GSU this evening sent a lengthy release addressing the situation. It says that the search was a joint operation along with the Belize Special Assignment Group and BDF.

The release says that upon arrival, the GSU announced its presence and purpose to search for drugs and illegal firearms.

Simultaneously the houses on the premises were cleared, one of which was serving as a laboratory. Present on the premises at the time were John McAfee, his girlfriend who is a 17 year old Belizean minor, and five security guards.

During the search ten firearms - seven 12 gauge pump action shotguns, one 12 gauge single action shotgun, one Taurus 9mm pistol and one 9MM CZ pistol - were found. Five air rifles with scopes resembling sniper rifles that use 6.26 mm slugs were also found and two hundred and seventy 12 gauge cartridges, thirty 9 mm rounds and twenty .38 rounds.

All these firearms and rounds of ammunition were scattered over the premises including inside the vehicles and houses that were unoccupied.

The GSU says, McAfee produced a Company firearm licence for all the above firearms except one of the 9 MilliMeter pistols.

Checks were then made with the senior officer with responsibility for firearms and explosives at Belmopan Police Headquarters who verified that no records appeared for a firearms licence for that firearm to McAfee.

Still, the GSU says McAfee was later released after producing a license for the firearm to the Police. It is still under investigation as no such licence has yet been found in the records at Police Headquarters

Additionally, 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 licence has been granted to McAFEE or any of his agents to manufacture antibiotics in Belize. Doing so without a licence is an offence under the Antibiotics Act. A decision as to whether or not charges will be laid will be taken by the Ministry within the next few days when the report of the Forensic Analyst becomes available.

Investigation regarding the employment of the security guards revealed that only two out of the four guards are licensed to act as Security Guards.

And there are charges; MICHAEL, ALLEN and DOMINGUEZ were arrested and charged for "providing security services without a license".

The GSU says McAFEE did have $19,650.00 in cash in his bedroom and say it was counted and secured by him.

As for the dogs, the GSU says during the operation, three of eleven dogs attacked and bit one of the GSU officers on his right thigh and the same dog - presumably Caramelo - proceeded to attack a BDF soldier who responded and shot the dog.

The GSU adds that 2 months ago, a Special Police team attempted to conduct a similar search on McAFEE's premises but were prevented from doing so.

The unit says the search at McAFEE's premises was based solely on information about supposed illegal activities being conducted there. McAfee says it was to settle a political vendetta from a politician whom he would not give a donation to.

Channel 7

#437033 - 05/03/12 08:22 AM Re: John McAfee Roughed Up By GSU [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Antivirus Founder, John McAfee, says politics caused GSU raid

John McAfee is the founder of McAfee Antivirus has been a philanthropist and investor in Belize. How rich is McAfee? We’re not sure, but rich enough to donate a vessel worth one point two million dollars to the Belize Coastguard in January 2009. McAfee lives in Belize and he says that he has become a target of the Gang Suppression Unit. He says the GSU came busting into his research facility in Orange Walk, killed his dog, took his passport, handcuffed him and arrested him on a bogus weapons charge. McAfee says he’s a victim because he didn’t donate money to a known U.D.P. Orange Walk politician.

John McAfee, Claims False Imprisonment by GSU

John McAfe

“On Monday at six o’clock, I was awakened by the sound of a bullhorn, a megaphone. I went outside and saw about thirty GSU in full uniform, full dressed, automatic weapons, storming through the property and drive way. I went back inside, got some clothes on, I came out. I was told to put up my hands up against the wall as was eleven other people on the compound. We had about eleven people present at the time—five of them were women. I was told that they had a warrant to search property. They began, with sledge hammers, to break the doors of the buildings—none of them were locked, but they just went and broke them in any case. I was merely watching this. They confiscated my passport, all of the weapons we used for security on the compound, handcuffed me and everyone and for fourteen hours outside in the sun, I sat handcuffed without food or water. We got water around noon. At three o’clock we asked for food. We were told by the GSU, do we look like cooks to you. They murdered my dog in cold blood. That was the thing I think—it was a warning to us that this is serious; don’t mess with us. They threw things around, they stole things—it was unbelievable, unimaginable for a country that was supposedly a democratic country. I was arrested on a bogus charge of having an illegal firearm—a firearm without a license. At the very beginning of the day, one of the GSU soldiers, one of the GSU officers, took all of my firearm licenses and put them in his vest. When he took them out to check the firearms, this one was missing. They charged me for having a firearm without a license; took me to Belize City. Fortunately we had copies. We showed up later at the police station with the copies. Even then it was difficult to get out. I had to get the intervention of the American embassy to get released. By the time I got to Belize, it was sixteen hours. I slept until two a.m. on a concrete floor at the Queen’s Street Police Station until the embassy finally convinced someone to release me. They confiscated my passport and claimed they didn’t have it. The entire day was an incredible nightmare. This is clearly a military dictatorship where people are allowed to go and harass citizens based on rumor alone and treat them as if they are guilty before any evidence whatsoever is obtained. It is astonishing, it is beyond belief and I intended not to let this stand. I will not stand idly by to let this happen to me. I promise you. It began, innocently enough, with my refusal to donate to the local political boss of the district where I lvied in Orange Walk and I have given at least two million dollars in gifts to the police departments in Orange Walk, San Pedro, Belize City, to the village of Carmelita, the City of Orange Walk. I have started programs to feed children, I’ve helped mothers whose husbands have simply disappeared. I am an old man, I am sixty-six. I have a fair amount of money and not much to do. So I spend it where I think it will do go. And I don’t ever invest in politics. I don’t donate to any political party; I don’t have any political affiliations. I think politics is foolish for a private citizen like myself to engage in—the winning party; you never get your money and the losing party; your on the outs. So I do not. And I refused to donate and the gentleman expected you know, I’ve given a million dollars to the police department, so he should get a huge chunk and he got nothing. Immediately after that, he began—not personality but his aids—began a campaign of calling to the local radio stations on Saturday morning talk shows saying the same thing; “What are we going to do about the white man at the toll bridge? He has all of these security guards. He’s probably involved in illegal activities. Everybody is complaining about him.” Nothing could be further from the truth. That politician by the way did not get reelected.”


McAfee says he’s seeking legal advice.

Channel 5

#437034 - 05/03/12 08:24 AM Re: John McAfee Roughed Up By GSU [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

GSU says McAfee’s research facility had unlicensed weapons

The GSU has sent its own press release about the bust at McAfee’s residence. According to the release, a joint operation between the GSU, the B.D.F. and the Belize Special Assignments Group (B-SAG) also an arm of the police department conducted a search on the premises of John McAfee, at Tower Hill, Orange Walk District. And a string of illegal activities seem to have been happening.

The property, the site of Belize Ecological Foundation Ltd, consists of nine houses, a shed, a freight container and a warehouse, all enclosed by a perimeter fence with two guard huts at the entrance. According to the GSU, it announced its presence and purpose was to search for drugs and illegal firearms. Two armed guards were observed on the compound, and upon directive immediately surrendered. Simultaneously the houses on the premises were cleared, one of which was serving as a laboratory. Present on the premises at the time were John McAfee, his girlfriend who is a seventeen year old Belizean minor, five security guards. During the search ten firearms—seven, twelve gauge pump action shotguns; one, twelve gauge single action shotgun; one Taurus nine millimetre pistol and one, nine millimetre CZ pistol were found. Five air rifles with scopes resembling sniper rifles that use six point two six millimetre slugs were also found and two hundred and seventy twelve gauge cartridges. Additionally, thirty nine millimetre rounds and twenty point thirty-eight rounds were also taken. According to the GSU, McAfee produced a company firearm licence for all the above firearms except the single action that is licensed to Tyron Morales and the nine millimetre CZ pistol.

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 also taken for analysis. The Ministry of Health has already confirmed that no licence has been granted to McAfee or any of his agents to manufacture antibiotics in Belize. Doing so without a licence is an offence under the Antibiotics Act.

Further investigation led into a query regarding the employment of the security guards. This revealed that only two of the four guards on the premises were licensed to act as security guards.

And in regards to the fatally wounded man’s best friend, the GSU says that three of the eleven dogs on the premises attacked and bit one of the officers on his right thigh. The same dog then attacked a B.D.F. soldier who responded by fatally wounded the dog.

At the end of the search, three of the security guards were arrested and charged for “Providing Security Services without a License”. While McAfee, who was initially detained and charged for the offences of Kept Unlicensed Firearm and Ammunition, was later released. This aspect is still under investigation as no such licence has yet been found in the records at Police Headquarters.

Channel 5

#437124 - 05/04/12 09:46 AM Re: John McAfee Roughed Up By GSU [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

McAfee said he contacted National Security Minister to prevent dispute

The estate of the founder of McAfee Antivirus and investor, John McAfee was busted by GSU earlier this week. Sixty-six year old McAfee has been living in Belize for some time now in Orange Walk town and claims that he has been politically victimized. This further led to a GSU raid on Labor Day this past Tuesday which has emotionally shook the philanthropist who has given millions in kind to various government departments, NGOs and the community. In the process of the raid at his research facility near Tower Hill, one of his thirteen dogs was killed, his passport confiscated and everyone on the compound—including McAfee—handcuffed for fourteen hours. The philanthropist says the raid was as a result of him refusing financial support of an Orange Walk politician who lost in the General Elections. According to McAfee, in anticipation that something like this would have happened, he attempted to contact the Minister of National Security three weeks ago, but to no avail. And now he hopes that the minister would finally get in contact with him.

John McAfee, Philanthropist

“I attempted to reach Mister Saldivar, the Minister of National Security on six different occasions. He did not return a single phone call, neither did his secretary—which as a last resort, I tried to reach him through his secretary. I sent him a text saying Mister Saldivar it is urgent that I speak to you. He did not respond. He is a member of the same party that was slighted by my refusal to donate. So this is astonishing too; the Minister of National Security. And I was going by to meet with him anyways—I would with any new minister just out of courtesy. I am a foreign citizen in this country; I want to meet the minister to let them know I am here if I can help in any way, hello, goodbye, whatever. It’s just politeness. He refused to respond to my phone calls, to give me an appointment to meet him or in any way to talk to him. And this was three weeks prior to this event that I was trying to reach Mister Saldivar. So Mister Saldivar, please would you call me now?”

Channel 7

#437177 - 05/05/12 09:34 AM Re: John McAfee Roughed Up By GSU [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Screen_shot_2012-05-03_at_7.56.07_PMLast night you heard the story of 66 year old John McAfee whose residence by the Toll Bridge was ransacked in what he calls an unjustifiable raid by the GSU.  While McAfee is claiming that the GSU used unnecessary force and their actions were unprofessional, the GSU sent out a press release yesterday evening justifying their actions and the level of force used.

Today, the Head of Security at McAfees residence says otherwise. According to Emerson Michael, the GSU used excessive force on the security guards and watch dogs.

Emerson Michael, Head of Security

“First of all it was not a nice experience because the GSU were the one who woke us up from our bed with all noise and all the commotion which was really uncalled for. They started by cutting the fence- cutting the wire on the fence and the gate was right there. My security had opened the gate. They cut the wire and stormed in and break down all the doors which really was not professional. It wasn’t justified at all. The breaking down of the doors was not necessary. It was uncalled for.”

In the press release issued out by the Gang Suppression Unit, they state and we quote, “Investigations regarding the employment of the security guards revealed that only two out of the four guards are licensed to act as Security Guards. End quote. But according to Michael, one of the individuals in question is presently training to be a security guard and the other individual is a maintenance worker.

Emerson Michael, Head of Security

“That’s what they are claiming but one of the officers is not a security guard. He is on training. On training to be a security you can’t possess a security licence. You are on training you are not a security guard. We don’t hire security guard just to hire security guard. We train them. We want professional so we train them. So this fellow is on training. The other guy is maintenance- or he does maintenance around the yard. Even though you do maintenance around the yard everybody that works there have a uniform and equipment. IE taser, baton, handcuff but they are not security guards. One is maintenance officer and one is on training. Training to be a security guard so there is no way we could get licence for him. He is not a security guard as yet.”

And so the question arises - Why does McAfee need so many security guards?  Well according to general manager of the McAfee estate Noel Codd, the answer is a simple, because he can.

Noel Codd, General Manager

“Well this person is a famous person, a multi millionaire. He has the finance. He can afford it. At the same time he gives people jobs you know. We are not using the government, the police force for protection like some individuals like a couple of months ago when they had the incident with Mr. Urbina. After that they had our tax payer’s money working for them when they had the police officer guarding him and for election he had a special branch for him all the while. Mr. McAfee doesn’t need that. He can afford his own and that’s why he does it.”

During the search on Monday, the GSU claim to have discovered a laboratory which they are alleging is being used to manufacture antibiotics without a licence from the Ministry of Health.  But according to Codd, that laboratory has been closed for over a year now and is presently being used to manufacture coffee.

Noel Codd, General Manager

“That’s a lab that has been closed for over a year now. We had a researcher who came with a proposal for a business and Mr. McAfee as a business man always you know finance and stuff. This medicine that they are talking about is a natural- is from natural plants around in the area especially the Bullet Tree. They extract it and use the chemical from that and they make this anti biotic used for cuts, scrapes, fly bites and stuff like that. But it was closed and that’s the reason part of it is used for the coffee factory.”

Hipolito Novelo, Reporter

“What coffer factory?

 Noel Codd, General Manager

“The coffee factory that we have. We produce coffee, manufacture coffee and send them out to San Pedro where we have the restaurant and stuff.”

John McAfee, Philanthropist

“I have over 80 employees in this country that we are playing social security for and my various establishments. They are all Belizeans. I have not hired a single American because I think to invest in a country you must invest in the people. I have donated in the past year along over a million dollars to various police departments. Not in money but in terms of equipments. Every officer in Orange Walk has new boots. Why? Because I purchase it for them. I was stopped at a check point about ten months ago and I saw an officer with tape around his boots, standing all day long. I bought them all new boots. I bought them stunned guns, pepper sprays, utility belts, camel backs. They are water packs for their backs. I built a police station for them in Carmelita which has not been accepted because the UDP believe that they would get a black eye by accepting that donation from me. It a beautiful police station: two jail cells, fully furnished with a vehicle that I donated. And they so far have not accepted it, which is fine with me. I’ll turn it into the housing for the poor. But it’s a ridiculous system that’s here, totally ridiculous.”

 McAfee reiterated to us today that if the matter should go any further then it would be through the courts.


#437219 - 05/06/12 09:30 AM Re: John McAfee Roughed Up By GSU [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

John McAfee fears GSU detention again

American businessman John McAfee could be headed for more problems with Belizean law enforcement authorities. The Gang Suppression Unit of the police department raided McAfee’s compound near the Toll Bridge in Orange walk on Monday morning and is reported to have detained the sixty six year old businessman for multiple hours in handcuffs. McAfee was eventually released; but police say that he did not have a license for one of the nine millimeter pistols. McAfee has produced a copy of the license in question, duly issued on December twenty eight of last year.

But even as his attorneys are now working to try and untangle the legal conundrum in which the retirned businessman finds himself, Love News understands that he was today anticipating fresh charges, related to his ownership of the company to which the license was issued for the cache of firearms found at his compound in orange Walk during the early morning raid on Monday. The name of the company is Belize Ecological Foundation Limited. McAfee says he is the owner and a director of the company that was first registered in 2008. Yearly filings have been done since, as is legally required at the Office of Corporate Affairs at the Belize Company’s Register.

Now a peculiar situation has apparently arisen where for some unexplained reasons, McAfee says his name does not appear on any of the hard copies of the records at the Company Registry. But when a search was done in the electronic database, McAfee says that his name turned up as the owner and a director of Belize Ecological Foundation Limited. So the question McAfee is now left asking is whether or not the hard copies were altered to reflect the name of a close friend of his as the owner and director of the company and not himself in an effort to frame him. It is a serious allegation and as we have reported, McAfee is fearful that faulty or tampered documents will be used to throw in jail again.

The businessman’s lawyer is now working on the issue and with the hope of figuring out a solution to the impasse so that McAfee can resume his normal routines again. A request for information from the Police Press Officer regarding the McAfee case had so far gone unanswered.


#437245 - 05/06/12 01:16 PM Re: John McAfee Roughed Up By GSU [Re: Marty]
ScubaLdy Offline
I see no one is touching this subject and I have to wonder why. I have met John only once and therefore cannot be considered a friend but I have to ask a few questions. If this sort of treatment can be meted out to someone like John what can happen to we ordinary folks.
Why were fences cut when there was a gate that could be opened?
Why were doors broken down when they were not locked?
Why was everyone kept in handcuffs in the sun without food?
Why was a dog shot instead of subdued– maybe knocked unconscious.
I hear politicians grumbling about crime being a deterrent to tourism. REALLY – Police harassment is not.
This sounds more like Mexico to me. And why isn’t anyone addressing this
(sorry my question mark key doesn't work - thankfully spell check helps but is not perfect.)
Take only pictures leave only bubbles

#437254 - 05/06/12 03:50 PM Re: John McAfee Roughed Up By GSU [Re: Marty]
iluvbelize Offline
Apparently, McAfee maintains it is politically motivated.

#437329 - 05/07/12 05:28 PM Re: John McAfee Roughed Up By GSU [Re: iluvbelize]
arklatex Offline
This makes me think twice about visiting foreign countries!

#437333 - 05/07/12 06:10 PM Re: John McAfee Roughed Up By GSU [Re: Marty]
ckocian Offline
Front page news in the New York Times today.

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