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Last Updated: Monday, 30 June, 2003, 19:24 GMT 20:24 UK
UFO lights were 'a prank'
Kevin Conde says he used patrol car lights to fool colleagues
A former US security policeman has said he was responsible for strange lights in a forest which sparked claims of a UFO sighting.

He said a patrol car - and not a UFO - was to blame for strange lights which have sparked two decades of debate.

A number of Air Force men said they saw an object in Rendlesham Forest in Suffolk in the early hours of 27 December, 1980.

Reports said the "UFO" was transmitting blue pulsating lights and sending nearby farm animals into a "frenzy".

But more than 20 years later, Kevin Conde has said he and another airman shined patrol car lights through the trees and made noises on the loudspeaker as a prank on a security guard at nearby RAF Woodbridge in Suffolk.

'Very strange place'

Mr Conde said: "It was fertile ground for a practical joke, and practical jokes are a tradition in the security police.

"We just drove through the forest flashing the lights through the fog.

"It wasn't a UFO, it was a 1979 Plymouth Volare."

Kevin Conde
Kevin Conde thinks people have overreacted to the prank
Mr Conde was stationed elsewhere shortly after the incident, and he had no idea his hoax was responsible for the Rendlesham UFO myth, which led to requests for information from the Ministry of Defence and the US government.

The mystery of the lights has continued for 23 years.

Brenda Butler, a local resident, said: "It was definitely a craft, because we've seen craft down here.

"Rendlesham is a very strange place - it's like a doorway opening from another dimension."

Despite Mr Conde's admission, some witnesses do not believe they saw patrol car lights that night in Rendlesham Forest.

US Air Force Sergeant John Burroughs said: "The blue lights coming down from the sky... I still have never heard of any technology capable of doing what I saw happening."

"The original stuff we saw cannot be taken for a police car. There's no way possible."

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03 Dec 02  |  Politics
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27 Jun 02  |  UK News


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