McAfee: Photo correctly revealed location in Guatemala
Published Tuesday, December 4, 2012 2:07PM EST
Back-peddling on earlier claims, anti-virus software pioneer John McAfee says the “accidental release” of a photo containing traceable location data did indeed reveal his whereabouts.
A journalist who is reportedly tagging along with McAfee as he tries to evade Belizean police published the photo Monday.
It didn’t take long for tech-savvy web surfers to scrutinize the photo’s GPS data and determine that it was taken at Guatemala’s Rio Dulce National Park.
McAfee initially claimed that the photo-- purportedly taken with VICE magazine editor-in-chief Rocco Castoro-- was yet another attempt to throw investigators off his trail. But in a Tuesday blog post, McAfee’s story changed.
He conceded that he is in Guatemala, just as the photo revealed.He attributed the mistake to “an unseasoned technician at VICE headquarters.”
McAfee has been trying to dodge Belizean police for several weeks now. Authorities say he is wanted for questioning in the murder of Gregory Vaunt Faull, an American expat who was shot to death on the Belizean island where they both owned homes.
But McAfee claims he’ll be killed if he surrenders.
The photo blunder is just the latest bizarre development in McAfee’s journey, the details of which have been anything but straightforward. Several media outlets chronicling the tale have followed along with McAfee’s personal blog, which claimed two days ago that the developer had been captured.
Journalist Jeff Wise, who broke the McAfee story for Gizmodo.com, notes that reporting on the software developer’s unusual fall from grace requires a healthy dose of skepticism.
Wise pointed out that McAfee has described himself as a prankster, someone who “takes delight in hoaxing the press.” He points out that several of McAfee’s statements have been retracted.
“He is a very hard character to pin down. When you report about this guy, you sort of have to triangulate,” Wise told CTV’s Canada AM Tuesday. “It’s really hard to say anything for sure about him.”
In what is purportedly the latest of events, a Tuesday report published by VICE magazine claims that McAfee and his 20-year-old Belizean girlfriend, Sam Vanegas, are now in Guatemala City.
McAfee is said to have hired a lawyer -- reportedly Vanegas’ uncle.