John McAfee said to be released from Guatemalan detention

After sneaking across the Guatemalan border and being detained by police, the antivirus-software pioneer may now be released to get his immigration status in order.

Dara Kerr Former senior reporter
Dara Kerr was a senior reporter for CNET covering the on-demand economy and tech culture. She grew up in Colorado, went to school in New York City and can never remember how to pronounce gif.
Dara Kerr
2 min read
John McAfee during a CNN interview before his capture last week. CNN/screenshot by CNET

A Guatemalan judge has ordered antivirus-software pioneer John McAfee to be released from a local detention center, according to the Associated Press.

Judge Judith Secaida reportedly told McAfee's lawyer, Telesforo Guerra, that she ruled McAfee's detention to be illegal and he had 10 days to figure out his immigration status.

McAfee was detained last week after illegally crossing the border from Belize to Guatemala. He entered Guatemala to seek asylum from officials in Belize, who have been pursuing him for the past few weeks in connection with the shooting death of his neighbor. McAfee had been on the run since November 12, when his neighbor Gregory Faull, a contractor and restaurant owner, was discovered with a bullet in his head.

Since his arrest, McAfee has requested political asylum by the Guatemalan government but was denied. He claims that he is being wrongfully persecuted by officials in Belize and has filed a trio of appeals with the Guatemalan government to avoid deportation. He has also said he would like to return to the United States.

"My goal is to get back to America as soon as possible," McAfee told Reuters on Saturday. "I wish I could just pack my bags and go to Miami. I don't think I fully understood the political situation. I'm an embarrassment to the Guatemalan government and I'm jeopardizing their relationship with Belize."

McAfee penned a new blog post today titled "An Open Letter to the Friends and Family of Mr. Faull." In the post, he denies any connection to Faull's murder and offers loved ones his condolences. McAfee also mentions that he has put up a $25,000 reward to "find [Faull's] killer(s) and bring them to justice."

According to the Associated Press, it could take at least one day to get formal written notification from Judge Secaida of McAfee's release from detention.