Mysterious objects were spotted in the skies of Brazil, reaching altitudes of 300 feet and hurtling through the air at a staggering speed of 11,500 miles per hour. The ensuing pursuit by fighter jets has since been dubbed the “Night of the UFOs.”
Five pilots provided sworn testimony, recounting the surreal encounter with 21 UFOs that appeared and disappeared mysteriously, both in the air and on the ground. Air Force Chiefs subsequently affirmed that there was “no explanation” for this extraordinary incident, which is now slated to be a focal point in a hearing on UFOs in Brazil’s Senate.
THE NOCTURNAL ENCOUNTER
The event unfolded over several hours, witnessed by hundreds, including military personnel who observed unidentifiable objects zipping through the air at incredible speeds. Fighter jet pilots reported seeing objects that eluded radar detection, engaging in a peculiar game of “cat and mouse.”
The initial reports came from Sergeant Sergio Mota da Silva, a Brazilian Air Force air traffic controller, on the evening of May 19, 1986. From the control tower near Sao Paolo, he noticed a peculiar light in the sky that neither ascended nor descended but remained suspended mid-air. Attempts to communicate with nearby airport controllers yielded no information about incoming planes.
Sergio dimmed the runway lights, prompting the UFOs to move closer to the control tower. When he increased the brightness again, the unidentified objects retreated. Though uncertain of their intentions, Sergio believed these were intelligent beings.
Around 8 pm, 2000 cadets from the Air Force training school observed the same lights. An hour later, an Embraer pilot reported seeing objects in the sky upon landing at the same airport. Similar lights were also witnessed on two passenger flights, including one traveling in the country’s interior.
INCURSION OF FIGHTER JETS
In response, three fighter jets were dispatched, led by Captain Armindo Sousa Viriato piloting a Mirage F-103. Despite reaching speeds of 1,000 mph, Viriato failed to catch up as the UFOs accelerated to an astonishing 11,500 mph or more. Another jet, an F-5E piloted by Lieutenant Kleber Caldas Marinho, reported the object climbing higher after initially stopping.
Brazilian UFO researcher Ademar José Gevaerd asserted that the alien technology displayed that night surpassed anything Earth had to offer. The UFOs engaged in a game of “cat and mouse” but did not pose a direct threat.
Photographer Adenir Britto, witnessing the incident from the ground, captured images of the objects, describing it as a unique and career-defining experience. However, attempts by Air Force officers and an American UFO researcher, James J. Hurtak, to obtain the negatives for analysis by NASA were unsuccessful.
EXTENSIVE MEDIA COVERAGE
The incident gained widespread media attention, prompting Brigadier Octávio Júlio Moreira Lima to hold an unprecedented press conference. Pilots recounted receiving warnings from ground control about approaching objects, with one pilot witnessing 13 flying objects in pursuit.
Despite extensive coverage, explanations for the incident remained elusive. A 2009 air report deemed the event solid and indicative of intelligence, citing the UFOs’ ability to follow, maintain distance, and fly in formation.
Gary Heseltine, Vice President of the International Coalition for Extraterrestrial Research, commended the seriousness with which the incident was handled. He emphasized that fighter jet pilots, entrusted with national security, should be trusted when reporting encounters with unidentified flying objects.