US Internet security guru John McAfee, on the run from authorities in Belize over a murder probe, was arrested by Guatemalan police Wednesday for illegally entering the country, officials said.
"National police agents have taken Mr John David McAfee before immigration authorities... He
has entered our country illegally," police spokesman Pablo Castillo told AFP.
The former Silicon Valley entrepreneur, now a weathered 67-year-old, had been in hiding for more than three weeks until he crossed the border into Guatemala on Monday with his girlfriend Sam Vanegas, 20, after devising elaborate ruses to confuse police.
Belizean authorities are seeking to question McAfee as a person of interest over the killing of his neighbor, fellow American Gregory Faull, on November 11.
Castillo hinted that the software pioneer could be deported within hours to Belize or repatriated to the United States.
"We understand that he has permanent residency in Belize, where he could be deported in the next few hours," the spokesman said.
"His status is illegal and he is being made available to immigration authorities so they can decide whether to deport him to his country of origin."
The arrest came just hours after McAfee formally requested political asylum from Guatemala, with his attorney Telesforo Guerra claiming his client was a "victim of persecution and harassment" from Belizean authorities.
McAfee says he fears authorities in the Central American country would kill him if he returned there for questioning, a claim Belizean officials have denied.