QUITO, ECUADOR (WENY) -- After years of being on the run, Paul Ceglia, the man from the Southern Tier who says he owns half of Facebook, is requesting asylum protection from the County of Ecuador.

Ceglia, who lived in Wellsville in Allegany County, is fighting extradition from the South American country. According to Sputnik News, Ceglia says he wants asylum because he fears for his life and the safety of his family. He was caught in Ecuador back in August of 2018.

As WENY News reported, Ceglia is accused of cutting off his home arrest monitoring bracelet, and escaped the country with his wife and kids back in 2015. Federal prosecutors says Ceglia fabricated a contract and multiple emails with Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerburg, and could face up to 20 years behind bars once convicted.

Zuckerburg acknowledged that he did work with Ceglia at one point, but it was on an unrelated project back in 2003.