The Journal of Hispanic Ufology
May 28, 2010
[Perhaps one of the most shattering UFO events of the year 1975 involved the near-abduction of pilot Carlos de los Santos Montiel as he flew his small aircraft over Central Mexico. The case received worldwide attention and Mr. de los Santos told his story to a number of major researchers and at several UFO conferences. Thirty-five years after the event, Ana Luisa Cid reopens the case – SC]
Mexico: An Interview With Carlos de los Santos Montiel
By Prof. Ana Luisa Cid
I had the opportunity to chat with Captain Carlos Antonio de los Santos on May 17th. He very kindly invited me to breakfast in the company of his wife Carmen and my son Alan. We discussed a variety of subjects, but particularly the experience he underwent in 1975 when three UFOs seized control of the private plane he flew at the time. Without the constraints of a formal interview, very interesting aspects began to emerge.
First and foremost, Captain de los Santos sticks by his original account, which is a good sign for ufologists who have supported him. Then we have the human aspect: Carlos Antonio still shakes when he recalls the events; although he is saddened by the memory of the mockery he was subjected to. With his characteristic kindness, he replied to questions posed by this interviewer regarding the case. For example:
ALC: Did the UFOs cause you any physical harm?
Carlos Antonio: No, considering that they were only 2 meters distant from me, suspended over the small plane’s wings for 18 minutes.
ALC: Were you punished for going public with your experience?
Carlos Antonio: No. When someone said on TV that my pilot’s license had been revoked and that I’d vanished, it was all a lie.
ALC: Why did you fly to Zihuatanejo? The likeliest course of action would have been to stay at Lazaro Cardenas, your original location, before returning to Mexico City.
Carlos Antonio: Because I didn’t like that town and the nearest one (by private plane) was Zihuatanejo, Guerrero.
ALC: Have you been approached again by the so-called Men in Black?
Carlos Antonio: Never again. It only happened on two occasions. The first, when I was going to an interview with Mr. Pedro Ferriz, and the second on the stairway of a hotel, when I was about to meet with the late Dr. J. Allen Hynek.
ALC: Have you had further sightings?
Carlos Antonio: Yes, but not during flight. I even took some photos (they didn’t come out well, he adds). It was a large, luminous object, like a boiled egg split in half.
ALC: What are your thoughts about the incident, 35 years later?
Carlos Antonio: Well, it was something I experienced and it was real. An incident that I am still at a loss to explain. I don’t know where they [the objects] came from, or what their intentions were. Sometimes I think they were curious and that they approached us for this reason, although it could also be that they saved me from some unpleasant situation. The small plane looked good, but it was very old, from 1958. So who knows? Maybe it was about to stall in mid-air, or I was about to lose a wing or the tail section. Or have some other accident…I don’t know.
ALC: Did the objects remove you from your route?
Carlos Antonio: No. I remained within the air corridor. What they did was lift me higher, which is dangerous, since my cabin wasn’t pressurized.
ALC: What do you say to those who claim you suffered from hypoxia and that you “imagined” all of this?
Carlos: Well, they don’t know what they’re talking about. When you experience hypoxia you feel sick, naturally. You’re dizzy and your visual field shuts down, but you don’t hallucinate.
ALC: Furthermore, radar can’t suffer from hypoxia. The objects were detected.
Carlos Antonio: Just so. Two different air traffic controllers detected three unidentified echoes on their screens. Both the route controller and the approach controller.
ALC: In some illustrations of sketches that you allegedly made, I see that the 1975 UFOs had an antenna on their upper part. Is this correct?
Carlos Antonio: This is not correct. They had no antennae. They had opaque grey fuselages and a sort of windshield, but without rivets and completely smooth. I’m going to draw them for you (makes drawing). And don’t think that it’s the only incorrect item of evidence circulating around there. I’ve also seen the date set down incorrectly. Some put May 2nd and other May 13. Not at all – it was May 3rd, 1975. What I would like to make clear is that my personal and professional reputation is safe thanks to the testimony of air traffic controllers. They had the three objects on their screens, making 270-degree turns in a very tight radius of action.
ALC: Aside from UFOs, have you had other strange experiences?
Carlos Antonio: Yes (the discussion turns to paranormal phenomena and the encounters he had with a very short person, having human features but possibly of alien origin. Unlike the Men in Black, this being behaved courteously)
ALC: Is it true that you’re writing a book?
Carlos Antonio: How did you hear about it? It’s among my plans. We’re working on it.
(Translation (c) 2010, S.Corrales, IHU. Special thanks to Ana Luisa Cid)
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