HIDDEN files, cover-ups and pressure on witnesses to “forget” the UFOs they say they saw – these are the Queensland X-Files.
Australian UFO Research Centre investigator Dominic McNamara has spent two years uncovering restricted files from the Federal Government’s top-secret national archives.
For the first time, The Sunday Mail is able to disclose three sightings previously marked classified and deemed to be a matter of national security.
Mr McNamara said there was little doubt the files – detailing UFO sightings between 1950 and 1970 – were deliberately hidden or made difficult to find.
“We are under the impression that some files are yet to be found or they are in something deeper that we are never going to get a look at,” he said.
Mr McNamara said Queensland had a spate of sightings for which there did not seem to be much explanation.
“It’s a bit of a hot spot,” he said.
“The bureaucratic solution is to contain it, especially if your mandate is to be able to explain what goes on in the sky.
“There were a number of sightings in that time, where there was something really strange going on in Queensland.
“The best evidence we have are the witnesses who have risked their social lives, their career and their sanity to come forward at a time when it was extremely difficult to do so and make a report.”
The engineer said there was too much unexplained activity to simply discount extra-terrestrial life.
He said sightings tended to peak around the time humans extended their push into the skies, with events such as rocket launches or nuclear bombs.
Mr McNamara said a lot of people thought he was “mad” and compared his work as a UFO investigator to that of TV character Fox Mulder of The X-Files.
“It’s hard for people to consider that there’s such a thing as alien life, but it’s harder to accept that their can’t be any,” he said.
The sightings include:
WITNESSED by Harold Jackwitz at Wulkuraka, west of Ipswich, on July 14, 1958, at 1.45pm. The object was seen by 12 members of a construction gang employed at the partly built electric shunting and marshalling yards.
Mr Jackwitz, of North Ipswich, described the object as round, silent and cloud-like, giving off light reflection, solid in construction, but emitting no sound or any obvious means of propulsion.
When seen, it was to the northwest and apart from one period where it appeared to hover, the direction remained constant until visual contact was lost.
Bruce Stephens, of Auchenflower in Brisbane, who was at the location, made observations of the phenomenon through his theodolite for about eight minutes.
He drew a detailed sketch.
Interrogators reported, “the possibility of it being an aircraft is most unlikely . . . the observers gave straightforward information, showed no tendency to embellish and their details were identical”.
No RAAF or civil aircraft was airborne or operating within these confines at the time.
ROLAND Roberts, witnessed a UFO at Daunia Station, via Nebo, near Mackay, on June 24, 1965, at 6.45pm.
“Saucer shape with silver dome top and black underneath . . . with lights around the side of it brilliant bluish white,” Mr Roberts wrote.
He included a sketch of his sighting. He described the object moving from southwest until it vanished in a northeast direction.
“It had a constant red jet tail or slip stream at the rear the colour did not vary,” the report read. “Never seen anything move as fast as the object observed.”
Mr Roberts was a grazier at his homestead when he saw the object, which he said “would have been between 30 to 50 feet (9m to 15m) across, could see no legs or landing gear under the object”.
Mr McNamara said there was great interest in this sighting because there was a boat which made a similar UFO report in Darwin.
POLICE officer Leslie Gray saw a UFO from his address at Kedron in Brisbane on November 12, 1966, at 7.55pm.
Mr Gray, then 36, said he was watching Russian satellites from his back yard with his family when a slightly illuminated boomerang-shaped object travelled overhead.
“I said to the children, come and look and try and remember what you’ve seen because no one will ever believe you,” he told The Sunday Mail this week.
The sighting was confirmed by his then-wife Elva and two children Robyn, then 13, and Stewart, then 5.
He described the object moving from the north to the south before it disappeared about 30 degrees above the horizon.
Mr Gray said lights in straight lines covered the object and there was a faint glow outlining the whole object, giving the impression of a brighter light above it.
“I thought no one’s going to believe me, but I would like to get it recorded,” he said.
No aircraft were reported as being in the area.
“Being a policeman I knew that you don’t ring the police and talk about things like that, so I called a friend in the air force,” he said.
Mr Gray said he was interviewed soon after he reported it, but “he was the most uninterested person I have ever met and thought I was crazy,” he said.
“I haven’t heard a thing since.”
Mr Gray said a newspaper article appeared soon after about a banana-shaped object burnt into the ground in Victoria.
Mrs Gray said it had been hard to convince others.
“People would brush you off, saying you’ve been drinking, but we’ll never forget it.”
© Queensland Newspapers