Australia’s X-files have gone missing.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the Australian Department of Defence has ”lost” its X-Files. The Herald reportedly sought to obtain files from the Department of Defence relating to UFOs via a Freedom of Information (FOI) request. But after two months of searching, the department was unable to locate the files. The Herald reports that the department’s FOI assistant director informed them that only one file could be located, and “the others had been destroyed.” Another UFO file showed up in the system, but again, the FOI assistant director informed the Herald that “the files could not be located and Headquarters Air Command formally advised that this file is deemed lost.”
Like in several other countries, Defence officials in Australia investigated and kept records on UFO sightings for decades. The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) was charged with investigating UFO, or UAS (unusual aerial sighting), reports. According to a department memo, “This function ceased in 1996 after consideration of the scientific record suggested that there was no compelling reason for the RAAF to continue to devote resources to the recording and investigation of UAS.” Department of Defence heads decided to stop taking UFO sighting reports in November of 2000, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
Individuals who contact the Australian Department of Defence with UFO sighting reports are now referred to local police authorities. Similarly, officials from the New Zealand Defence Force announced in March of 2011 that they would no longer be taking UFO sighting reports, and that people with UFO sightings to report would be directed to local police.