Grizzled geek paranoiac John McAfee (left, with Vice editor-in-chief Rocco Castoro) was arrested in Guatemala last week after Vice Magazine accidentally revealed his location by including his GPS coordinates in the photo above, which they posted while he was fleeing a murder investigation in Belize. That is crazy enough. But now McAfee, still being held in Guatemala, claims that Vice purposely set him up to score an exclusive.
Last week McAfee seemed to be cool with Vice even after editor in chief Rocco Castoro and photgrapher Robert King's spectacular fuck-up led Guatemalean cops right to his door. He let the journalists tag along and film him for an upcoming Vice documentary up until the minute he was arrested. But now McAfee has announced via blog post that he is "terminating his relationship to Vice Magazine" because he believes they ratted him out on purpose.
From the blog post:
Due to information just received, It is no longer clear to Mr. McAfee that the "accidental" release of his co-ordinates due to Vice Magazine's editorial department's failure to remove location data from their now notorious photo, was indeed an accident. This incident led directly to Mr. McAfee's arrest. The reason, possibly, was that Vice wanted exclusive access to Mr. McAfee's arrest, which they in fact obtained and broadcast. This, and subsequent developments, including a breach of verbal contract, has led Mr. McAfee to terminate all contact with Vice.
While Vice may well be incompetent, it's hard to believe they'd so maliciously betray a source like this. McAfee has been muddled in his communications throughout the ordeal, making claims at almost the same time he retracts them, and this may be another stunt or... something else talking. Vice hasn't said much about the whole thing, issuing a non-revealing statement that they are going to "wait and talk to the people on our team who were on the ground" before drawing any conclusions.
In the meantime, McAfee, who is being held in a hospital awaiting extradition to Belize after complaining of chest pains, has sold the rights to a story that is still far from over to a TV production company.