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McAfee treated in Guatemala

GUATEMALA CITY - Software company founder John McAfee was hospitalized Thursday after being denied political asylum in Guatemala, and his lawyers said they were making a last-ditch effort to keep him from being flown back to Belize for questioning about the killing of a fellow American expatriate.

McAfee said that he suffered chest pains overnight but didn't believe he had a heart attack. A government doctor who examined him agreed, saying that he appeared to be suffering from high stress.

McAfee was moved from an immigration center to a police-run hospital Thursday afternoon after Guatemalan authorities said McAfee's request for asylum had been denied. Shortly after the decision was announced, McAfee issued a plea on his blog for the public to petition Guatemalan President Otto Perez Molina to let him stay.

Belizean police spokesman Raphael Martinez said officials expected McAfee to be flown back to his country's capital. Police want to question him about the killing of Gregory Viant Faull, who was shot to death in early November on the Belize island where both men lived. - AP

British arrest media wizard

LONDON - For years, the affable, white-haired Max Clifford has been the "go to" guy for British celebrities seeking help with public relations fiascoes. Now it is Clifford who may need help: He was arrested Thursday as part of a wide-ranging U.K. inquiry into sex abuse.

Clifford, 69, called the allegations "damaging and totally untrue" as he left a London police station. News of the arrest shocked Britain's entertainment and media communities; Clifford has long been seen as a sage adviser with an uncanny ability to shape the news in his client's favor.

A police statement said the arrest was part of Operation Yewtree, a broad investigation into child sex abuse spurred by the case of Jimmy Savile, a prominent BBC television host who has, since his death last year, been linked to serial sex abuse of underage girls.

The police statement does not link Thursday's arrest to child sex abuse. It was not clear what Clifford was being questioned about. - AP

Ex-leader faces murder charge

HONG KONG - The former prime minister of Thailand, Abhisit Vejjajiva, was charged with murder on Thursday for his role in a military crackdown on antigovernment protesters in Bangkok 21/2 years ago.

Tharit Pengdit, the director of Thailand's Department of Special Investigation, said Abhisit and his deputy had issued "orders that caused the deaths of many people."

Abhisit was charged in the killing of Phan Khamkong, a taxi driver whose case is one of the first to advance through the courts. - N.Y. Times News Service