Alien wooed me: it's in the real X-Files
As close encounters go, the claim by a woman that an alien attempted to seduce her on a country road sounds far-fetched, but files released today reveal that it was considered serious enough for the British ministry of defence to investigate.
The woman claimed she was approached by a man who said he came from a planet similar to Earth. She was questioned by intelligence branch DI55, whose brief was to investigate credible UFO reports.
She told them that, during their 10-minute chat, the man said his race was responsible for creating crop circles and explained the importance of contact between humans and his own people.
The woman, whose identity is not revealed in the 'X-Files', was described by officials as "agitated" following the incident in which she "heard a loud buzzing noise behind her, then turned to witness a large, glowing spherical object rise steadily until it disappeared".
Other cases include the description of a black inverted boomerang-shaped UFO by two experienced air traffic controllers at Heathrow.
Today's release of the documents also sheds light on one of the world's most infamous UFO episodes, namely the death of an American air force pilot, Captain William Schaffner, whom conspiracy theorists believe was killed during a high-speed duel with aliens above the North Sea.
On the evening of 8 September, 1970, Schaffner's plane crashed into the sea during a low-level exercise following take-off from a UK base. Schaffner's body was never found, which became significant after claims that Schaffner's plane was scrambled to intercept UFOs.
Although the 28-year-old's death continues to be attributed by some internet sites to a secret war between aliens and earthlings, the files contain a previously unreleased summary of the original report into the crash, which makes no mention of UFOs. It concluded that the pilot's death was a tragic accident.
Dr David Clarke, a lecturer in journalism at Sheffield Hallam University and author of Flying Saucerers: A Social History of UFOlogy, said: "From suspected US Air Force spy planes to Russian rockets burning up in the atmosphere, these new files show the many and varied explanations for UFO reports. Making the material available allows us all to make an informed decision on the mystery of UFOs."
The papers confirm that officials also believed it was possible that someone was flying an advanced aircraft near Irish air space.
The most intriguing incident involving such a craft occurred at 9pm on 4 August 1990, at Calvine in Scotland.
According to the brief details, witnesses saw a diamond-shaped UFO hovering for about 10 minutes before it disappeared upwards at high speed. During the incident, Harrier jump jets were seen making a number of low-level passes. Colour photographs reveal both the UFO and at least one of the jets.
Former UK defence official, Nick Pope, described the photographs as "one of the most intriguing UFO cases in thefiles".