Air Force officer who vanished in 1983 is found in California

Portrait of Captain William Howard Hughes Jr taken from Air Force Office of Special Investigations official website

Responding to Hughes' claims of deserting the air-force cause he was depressed, AFOSI spokeswoman Linda Card said there were many more questions to be answered as the investigation continues. In his home, the investigators found lists of plans and books he wanted to read, the article states.

A U.S. Air Force officer with top-secret clearance was reportedly found 35 years after he was declared missing.

Captain William Howard Hughes Jr, now 66, was last seen withdrawing $28,000 (£20,919) from 19 different bank branches in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1983. His sister Christine said, "We do not feel he disappeared voluntarily", detailed the Albuquerque Journal.

"After being confronted with inconsistencies about his identity, the individual admitted his true name was William Howard Hughes Jr., and that he deserted from the US Air Force in 1983", the Air Force said.

Capt Hughes disappeared in 1983 after returning from temporary duty in western Europe. Nevertheless speculation persisted that Hughes may have been abducted by or defected to the Soviets. He will likely face charges of desertion.

At the time of his disappearance, Hughes was in his early thirties. Officials said he was using the name Barry O'Beirne. Hughes was recently apprehended 35 years after he is alleged to have deserted.

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After his arrest, Hughes told investigators that he was depressed about being in the Air Force and made a decision to leave.

In a 1986 Los Angeles Times commentary titled "Sabotaged Missile Launches?" for example, the former longtime New York Times foreign correspondent Tad Szulc wrote: "The French and American accidents are adding up to a weird pattern, surrounded by odd coincidences and unexplained events, deeply preoccupying Western intelligence". Some believed that the perpetrators were from the Soviet Union.

The Albuquerque Journal reported that in 1984, the Pentagon had said that though he had top secret clearance, he did not have clearance that could "compromise national security". Friends and co-workers also didn't provide any information, the Air Force said. Although Hughes had access to "U.S". But still, she said, the case remains under investigation.

However, Linda Card, a spokeswoman for the air force office of special investigations, told the Albuquerque Journal that investigators now see "no indication that he had any classified information or that he gave any classified information". "Until we have the whole story, we don't have the story". Hughes's Cold War-era disappearance prompted concerns and theories that the Air Force officer had been abducted by the Soviet Union or had defected to the USSR.

U.S. deserters can face a number of charges once they are found, including prison time, being dishonourably discharged and losing pay.

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