Three defendants scheduled to appear before Judge Terrence Boyle in the US District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina in July might just touch on close encounters of the fourth kind.
Steven M. Greer, Emery S. Smith and Deborah Foch have been charged in connection with alegedly operating a commercial venture on a national wildlife refuge.
Charges against Greer include operation of a commercial enterprise on a national wildlife refuge, trepassing on a national wildlife refuge, and violation of “daylight use only” regulation which prohibits all nighttime activities on Pea Island except fishing.
Smith and Foch are charged with interference with persons engaging in authorized activity, trepassing on a national wildlife refuge, and violation of the “daylight use only” regulation for Pea Island.
The charges are all related to an incident that occurred in April 2010.
On the evening of Monday, April 12, 2010, when law enforcement officers from responding agencies crossed the dunes on Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge to see why so many people were on the beach at night, they were stunned to see more than three dozen people in a circle holding up light sticks, a source at the Sheriff’s Office told the Sentinel the following day. The light-holders weren’t anxious to give out information, but, said the source, the event had something to do with UFOs.
The participants were taking an Ambassador Training course held on the Outer Banks from April 11-17. The classes, held in several locations across the country, are sponsored by the Center for the Study of Extraterrestrial Intelligence (CSETI), part of the Disclosure Project, headed by Greer, a former physician who has been leading such programs for more than a decade.
A website publicizing the event described the North Carolina location: “It’s a wonderful location, with amazing energy and mystery, starry skies, and a great place to practice the CSETI ET Contact Protocols while learning to be an Ambassador to the Universe… This is the fourth year that we will be returning to this location, near where the Wright Brothers flew the first powered airplane in 1903. It is fitting that we will be practicing the CSETI ET Contact Protocols in this historic location!… This nearly week-long intensive prepares you to make open, peaceful contact with Extraterrestrial civilizations as a citizen-diplomat from Earth.”
Topics covered during the week-long program included:
“CSETI CE-5 Protocols to initiate contact with ETs using consciousness, coherent thought, lasers, electromagnetic signals, and group processes;
“The nature of mind and how to experience the unbounded, cosmic aspect of consciousness always within us. This will include specific meditation techniques to experience cosmic consciousness, achieve natural remote viewing and precognition abilities, and other aspects of higher states of consciousness;
“A direct experience of the structure of the cosmos that integrates the unified field of cosmic awareness, space/time, matter, electromagnetism, and the subtle realms of thought/light – and how these interface with ET technologies and communication systems;
“Practice with the CSETI CE-5 Protocols and learning to discern ET spacecraft from man-made classified technologies. This includes field work out under the stars with Dr. Greer;
“An in-depth understanding of who is behind ET related secrecy – and why;
“How to create a CSETI Contact team in your area and initiate on-going peaceful contact with ET civilizations;
“The new and wondrous sciences dealing with free energy from the vacuum, antigravity, and other technologies that will give us a sustainable, peaceful future on Earth; and
“A glimpse of the future: How humanity will evolve over the next 500,000 years to become enlightened people who will become Extraterrestrial visitors to other planets.”
The cost was approximately $1,000 per person to register, plus the cost of reading materials required. However, that cost doesn’t include travel expenses, lodging and meals, said Foch, coordinator of the programs, to the Sentinel in 2010.
Foch confirmed at that time that the program had been held on the Outer Banks for the past four years and that a total of 30 to 40 participants and staff attended each session. She said that the participants ranged in age from 20 to 80 and are of differing backgrounds varying from students to professionals to retirees.
The Ambassador registration page included the website address of the Outer Banks Visitor Bureau to help registrants find out more about the area and lodging. Foch said in some locations where the programs are held, the sponsor sometimes blocks rooms in hotels or helps make other arrangements.
Asked why the programs weren’t advertised locally so that residents could participate, she replied that they would advertise if the event was a two-hour evening lecture for hundreds of people.
Several such events are held throughout the country at places such as Joshua Tree National Park where programs have been held since 1996 and Mt. Shasta. Foch confirmed that most if not all programs take place on national wildlife refuges and national parks. “We like to have access to less populated areas,” she explained.
She estimated that 25 to 50 percent of the attendees are repeats.
To use the federal property for commercial ventures, proper permits must be obtained. It appears no commercial permits were obtained for these events.
US Fish and Wildlife Service spokesperson Bonnie Strawser told the Sentinel in 2010 that a special use permit must be obtained before any such activity can take place. “We require a SUP for all commercial activities that occur on the refuge, but we don’t permit all activities.
“We turn down requests for permits that do not meet the requirements for on-refuge activities. The activities are evaluated – activity. time, and location – by impact on wildlife and habitat. Activities must be wildlife-dependent. We don’t allow/would not permit non-wildlife dependent commercial recreational activities – thus would not likely issue a permit for a UFO program – commercial or otherwise.
Strawser said that there are no exceptions to the permit requirement. “The refuge manager has the descretion to waive or reduce the fee – which can be large – if he/she deems the activity to be beneficial to the refuge – for example, the filming of a wildlife production to teach people about refuges or wildlife.”
There has never been a license issued for this type of program, she said.
The same week the group was found on Pea Island, they also attempted to access the beach farther south in the National Seashore, which is managed by the National Park Service, said Steve Thompson, special park uses coordinator for the National Park Service Cape Hatteras Group. “Law enforcement turned them back and told them they had to have a permit. We wouldn’t issue a permit for that because it does not fit with our mission,” said Thompson. “The only training that we allow is scientific which helps result in the best management of the park – we work a lot with university researchers.”
Earlier this year, the group noted on its website that plans for another Outer Banks visit were still being formulated and would be announced at a later date. However, no such plans have since appeared.