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The Somerton Man Case. The body of a man found on an Australian beach close to a major Atomic Testing ground, he was probably poisoned, a copy of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam and an unbroken Code page found and associated to him. Set against a Cold War background in 1948, was this man a spy? We think so and this blog focuses on the evidence that was left behind and in some cases missed, the Code page, Dry Cleaning numbers, A Poem and a small, torn piece of paper bearing the words TAMAM SHUD.

Sunday, 29 July 2018



The above is another 3D view as per the previous post. In this one, we have Pavel Fedosimov and we used the original photograph that I was able to source. What is immediately noticeable is the fact that the nose is not bulbous, it is, in fact, a straight nose according to the 3D software interpretation. There are other examples of this software being used on images of well-known personages, here's a link to one:

You will see that the side profile created is of good quality and very close to the real side profile of the subject.

So, that's Pavel but how about a comparison of his profile with that of the plaster bust?

The shape of the nose and forehead is almost a perfect match, the mouth is not but, in the right-hand image Pavel's mouth is open and the jaw dropped. In the left-hand image of the bust, the mouth is closed, in fact, the bust was crafted using photographs so there has to be a margin of error. It seems reasonable though to assume that Pavel's mouth when closed, would be a fairly close match to that of the bust.

An update for you, Clive has been in touch with CIA records in the US and they have told him that more photographs will be released in September. At that time my best guess for SM will be tested and if I am right then that would be good and if not then I will acknowledge that fact. 

August 14th 2018 UPDATE

A thank you to Milongal for providing the image of an unknown man at Moscow airport in 1955, he was stood alongside Molotov and they were greeting the Canadian Foreign Minister at the time, Mr. Lester Pearson. I took a close up grab from the larger image of the face of the man that Milongal believes is Fedosimov and as you can see below I have put the images of both men's faces alongside each other for comparison. I couldn't find a Fedora image at the right angle to apply to Milongal's candidate, my apologies for that. Still, I think that you will be able to compare both images:

As you can see, the man alongside Molotov is not a match to Fedosimov. His ear is considerably lower than Feds, the jawline is totally different, the set of the eyes is totally different and I would also say the shape of the nose doesn't match.

I think that it's good that you put this forward Milongal, it eliminates this particular candidate of yours. But, as I have already said on a number of occasions, we will be hopefully be getting new images from the CIA courtesy of Clive sometime in September. If I am proven wrong by those images and dates, then I will acknowledge it, if there are no more recent images then we are back to square one.

A side note for you Milongal. this is not a game, it's not a race or a matter of me proving myself to be better than you, it's a matter of making the effort to find the identity of SM and in my view, Fedosimov is the best candidate.  If you have more images please post them.

Thursday, 26 July 2018



With thanks to the Computer Vision Laboratory at the University of Nottingham, we have been able to create 3D views of the Somerton Man post-mortem and the plaster bust.

1. Post Mortem Photograph: 3D Video Images

The photograph in the video above is one that was reconstructed by SAPOL before its release on December 4th 1948. There has been much discussion about this image and following the extensive analysis done on this blog it is now generally accepted that the photograph was altered.

2. The Plaster Bust: 3D Video

Bear in mind that Jestyn like most of the population in Adelaide at the relevant time would have seen the published images of the man found on the beach at Somerton on December 1st, 1948. But, when she was shown the plaster bust she almost fainted to all accounts. It is believed that she instantly recognised the face of the man but would not acknowledge that fact. My view is that it is the plaster bust that shows a true representation of the Somerton Man and as you can see, it is quite different in a number of ways to the post-mortem image.

Followers of this blog will recall that in Clive's interview with Paul Lawson, he admitted that he used photographs of the man to create the plaster bust facial features. The question is, which photographs?

For those interested in the technology used, essentially it takes a single full-face image and using AI, it is able to generate a realistic 3D image of that face that can be manipulated.

The paper they produced, Large Pose 3D Face Reconstruction from a Single Image via Direct Volumetric CNN Regression, is available here:

Wednesday, 18 July 2018




Step 1.

Top right-hand corner, usually referred to as a 'stain' but is, in fact, another instance of the Police marking over details. Using UV light in a dark room shows some of those details.

Step 2.

Immediately noted the presence of unusual markings within the highlighted area in particular

Step 3.

Adjusted the colour balance of the image to sharpen the shapes and numbers are visible

Step 4.

Highlighted number set, other markings are visible.

South Australian Police used UV lighting to detect fingerprints amongst other things during the 1940s.

Tuesday, 10 July 2018


 Flxible Clipper

First imported from the USA By Reg Ansett, October 1948

 In Ansett Livery...
The history of this bus may hold a link to Jestyn and a man named Keane, more to come...

UPDATE 12th July

This Mr. Tom Keane was, in 1948, a resident of Hamilton in Victoria, a place where Jestyn was known to have friends and relatives, dates of those friendships are yet to be established. Clive and I are working together on this and you should know that we are being helped a great deal by one of Tom Keane's close relatives. The bus? Tom was a motor mechanic and worked on engines for this type of vehicle. One interesting revealed to us is the fact that whilst Tom Keane is his name, it is his middle name which had always used including in his signature.

Another update due next week.

Thursday, 5 July 2018



Size: 5.1 X 6.6 inches. Aspect Ratio: 17:22


Size: 4.8 X 6.65 inches  Aspect Ratio 96:133


Size: 3.75 X 5.5 inches  Aspect Ratio: 15:22
The insert above was done by a member of the Adelaide University FB page organised by Professor Abbott

As you can see there is some variation in size and aspect ratios with items 1 and 2 being closest with item 3 being markedly different, in fact it is a full 1 inch shorter, could that be accounted for by the book cover being larger? It seems quite a difference.


It gets more complex when you look at the dimensions of the book as described by the University Wiki, it says the book size was 5.5 inches X 4.5 inches which for them tied into the size of the code page. So far so good although we now have a third set of dimensions and it doesn't match the original size or Aspect ratio which is 11:9.

There's more:


Whilst I don't believe it was his intention to provide any new information, JS on the Cipher Mysteries blog pointed out that I had previously stated that Gerry Feltus had told me that the phone numbers were positioned in the top right-hand quarter of the back of the book. That's true.

This conflicts with the more recent statement regarding Detective Brown's comment that the telephone number was in 'tiny lettering' beneath the code. This is true, that is what I quoted.

The question is, what was the orientation of the code page on the back of the book? We have separate issues here, the book dimensions the code page dimensions and the orientation of the code on the back of the book.


If we take Adelaide Uni's view that the book was 5.5 inches wide X 4.5 inches tall, then we should be able to verify that information by looking at the size and aspect ratio of the code page image as found on the Adelaide University wiki, right?

Here they are: Image size: 4.5 inches wide X 3.6 inches tall. Aspect Ratio: 5:4.

That's a full half inch narrower than the SAPOL images and 1 inch shorter and the aspect ratio is significantly different.


Let's look at the issue of just where the telephone number might be. In one statement it's in the top right-hand side of the book and in the other it's beneath the code as Detective Brown stated.

Could both statements be correct? I have not been able to find any reference to the orientation of the code on the back of the book: 


 The above simply doesn't work, so let's look at it another way, the overlay:

To be correct, these are approximate placed images but the point is that you should be able to see from the above image just how the telephone number can be beneath the code and in the top right hand corner of the book.

Remember that you would be looking at the code page from the back of the book.

It's apparent if we are to believe the various dimensions supplied, that there's a big piece of the code page missing?

We could do the same exercise with the larger supposedly original sized images of the book and be left with an even bigger piece of the code page missing:

Even if we were to take the book and code page to the same aspect ratio as the code page, we would still have the strong possibility that the two statements 'Top right quarter' and 'Beneath the code' are one and the same position.

So thanks JS, I am absolutely certain that this wasn't what you had in mind, amusingly and if I am right here, it's the same style of error that Milongal made recently with Verse 70 :)

Certainly worth further exploration and another first for this blog I believe. Happy to share some of the glory with you JS!

 A Bonus Image
Here's a little bonus for you, it's been posted a number of times here, I suggest that you put on your glasses! it reads 2yrs 42 and beneath that it looks like Z1 Venom X4023? Note the unusual shaped X, curved rather like a mathematical symbol.

Wednesday, 4 July 2018




The above two images are of the 'flourish' at the base of the code page, I have highlighted a 'spur' on the flourish, which as you can see has some darkened numbers written into it. The first numbers are 102570 with some smaller numbers running along to the right. There are a whole series of markings including numbers and letters beneath the spur which has been taken looking from the top of the page downwards.

The 102570 number set seems to me to be about .6 mm in height.

First published in March 2017

This is a close up of the ends of the two crossed lines found near the centre of the code page. The image itself was taken using a UV backlight with an Olympus camera set to macro and a 3X optical magnification. You can make out from this image the tightly packed micro written numbers and some letters. All are done in block caps.

The image below uses an image editor, Techsmith Snagit. This editor gives you the ability to magnify regions within an image as you can see here:

Next, the same method was used to examine the full image of the two crossed lines. First the close up:

Now with magnification, look inside the red circles, the second one in you can see the sequence 'NI608:

And above, here's another for good measure, in this pic, apart from the crossed can see some of the micro-writing that exists in the letters B and O below the lines.

For the record, these images came from the  'new scans' apparently discovered in somewhat dubious circumstances and which Nick Pelling has thus far failed to disclose. Anyway, the point is that Nick, as erudite as ever, declared that we should all use his newly discovered scans, which are in fact just scans of the original scan, and we should all test them. So, I have and above are some results with much more to come. This, of course, means that by default Nick now agrees that there is micro writing on the code page! Many thanks, Nick. Can we get down to some serious code breaking now? That's your skill area, isn't it?

Last point, Nick, if you are going to attempt, yet again, to disprove what is quite definitely there, may I suggest that you put forward the full results of your tests together with a detailed description of how you conducted them? Disclosing the precise source of the 'new scan' would be a plus of course but I wouldn't expect you to want to do that.

Have a wonderful weekend!


Look closely between the letters T and M on the last line, there's a highlighted box. In the close up below you will see just what was written in there:


Tuesday, 3 July 2018

Somerton Man: What the evidence says... An oldie but a goodie...


There are many different views and lines of thought expressed across the internet on who SM may have been, how he died, who was involved, was the suitcase really his etc. etc. etc...

This blog has always focused on the evidence, in particular, the images but also including the evidence to be found in Lawson's diary and what we can learn from them all. Amongst those images are, the 'Code' page, the individual letters of the 'Code' page, the Somerton Man images, Jestyn's poem to Alf Boxall and Lawson's diary.

Starting with Jestyn's poem and the Code page, this is what I think the evidence tells us:

1. It is very likely that the 'Code' page was written by Jestyn. In support of that, some months ago I posted a comparison of the letter R from the code page and a letter R from Jestyn's poem, you will see below that they are quite similar. Please note that both letters are in the same aspect ratio and reasonably close in physical size, approximately 5mm in height. I have enlarged them a little again making an effort to keep the aspect ratios lined up. Others have copied this approach but missed out on the proper aspect ratio and its importance.

Note the way that the Police had marked the individual indentations beneath the image on the right from the code page, it's a kind of 'stippled' effect. You should be able to make out some of the letters so highlighted.

2. The poem to Alf Boxall and the code page both contain micro written letters and numbers as shown below, the first three being from the code page and the second three from Jestyn's poem:
Letter B line 3
Letter Q line 4
Letter A line 4

There are some vastly improved images of the Poem in progress and they will be posted here shortly. Interesting to note that in a post on Pete Bowes site a few months ago, he mentioned the issue of the overwriting and apparent 'mistakes' in spelling, read on...

The Special Operations Executive & Ink H

The technique used to create both the code page and the poem was known as 'Ink H' and was in use by British SOE agents as per their manual for Espionage Agents operating behind enemy lines. The method was to first write out the larger letters in ink, then insert the smaller code letters in pencil into the individual larger letters and finally carefully overwrite all of the larger letters once more in ink. To develop the coded message meant immersing the full code into a string bleach solution which bleached out the ink leaving visible the once 'hidden' penciled letters. This method required a lot of concentration to ensure that each of the smaller letters were properly covered by the final layer of ink, mistakes were made and perhaps that's what Pete Bowes had spotted.

The SOE association is not restricted to the use of Ink H, SOE, under Leo Marks, made a point of recruiting nurses as code specialists and agents. It is in my view highly probable that a similar approach was used here in Australia given the close relationship between British and Australian Intelligence services. Could it be that senior people within the Australian Health field and specifically in the business of recruiting new nurses, worked hand in glove with Military Intelligence? Anyone followed that up or any takers?

Another way to view the hidden penciled letters was if the person who wrote the code had leant on a book or other soft surface then indentations would have been left and there certainly were and still are valid methods for recovering 'indented writing'. According to Gerry Feltus, the Rubaiyat had indented writing and that is what was photographed. The Police then traced over the smaller indentations that were fashioned into the shape of the larger letters found on the page.

Monday, 2 July 2018



Not as new as it sounds but very true. There's been some discussion of late about Detective Brown and his description of the back of the book and the existence of 'tiny writing'. As it turns out that isn't quite all there is to this story.

But first here's a quick overview of Detective Brown's career up to the time of the Somerton Man case courtesy of Adelaide University.

Len joined the Police in 1935 and served a 4 year stint in training as a Junior Constable at Port Adelaide. After that period he was sworn in as a probationary constable and posted to Renmark in 1938. After his time there he spent 2 years at Strathalbyn and then he was off up North to Port Augusta as a plain clothes constable. In 1946 he was posted to Adelaide CIB being promoted to Detective in October 1948. By the time 1948 came around Len had been in the service for 13 neary 14 years and was immersed in the customs of the South Australian Police and he knew the ropes well. He was not the kind to treat his position lightly and he worked by the book.

It was January 12th 1949 when Len was appointed  to work on the Somerton Man case, just 4 days after Detective Sergeant Leane joined that investigation. Len stayed with the case until after the completion of the Coronial Inquest and on June 21st he moved on to another case.

In short, Len was no longer on the case when the book was handed in a month later on July 22nd 1949. In other words, there was no way he could have altered the book for some imaginary reason as was put forward by one recent commenter. On that subject, I found it unfortunate that this particular person chose to denegrate and question the integrity of a well respected police officer.

When in later years he was interviewed by Professor Abbott regarding the book and the telephone number, Len related his thoughts and his memories of the event:

'Len remembers that the code and nurse’s phone number were in the back of the book in pencil. The phone number was in very tiny lettering. Len stated that the phone number was written under the code. (We are now able confirm that the code was indeed on the back dust cover of the book. Len's testimony that the phone number was below that code and not beside it does concur with physical evidence from what we now believe to be the exact size of the book).'

This information confirms that 'very tiny lettering' was present and it was actually on the code page and 'under' the code, that's micro writing.

In discussions with Gerry Feltus, he made it clear that the code page markings found were indentations and not pencil. The two are not mutually exclusive of course. On the one hand, you have a clear to see yet very small telephone number in pencil and on the other and on the same page, you have the indentations of the 'code' letters which needed a UV light in order to see them.

In relation to the existence of micro writing, Gerry Feltus said, 'I see what you see but I have no explanation for thee'.

The physical size of the book being 5.5 inches by 4.5 inches, that's important for those wishing to examine the official photograph of the code page that you will find on the wiki here:

As you will see below, contrary to the comments of the nay sayers, there are good examples of micro code and the use of micro writing as a form of clandestine communication. Add to that the existence of an SOE manual which describes the method known as Ink H which includes the concealment of letters/codes beneath larger letters and the  clear demonstration of just how it was done that you'll find on this blog plus the numerous photographs showing their presence and there is no logical argument about the existence of micro writing on the code page.


I posted this piece more than 3 years ago, it shows beyond doubt the use of micro writing by British Intelligence, MI6 to be precise. The work conducted by myself and others has consistently shown the existence of micro written letters and numbers in many places on the code page and also within the Verse 70 piece written by Jestyn to Alf Boxall. In more recent times we have also seen evidence of similar micro writing on Tibor Kaldor's last letter. Micro writing links Jestyn, Alf Boxall and Tibor Kaldor to the case. We cannot say with absolute certainty that the Somerton Man is linked to micro writing although it would not be an unreasonable assumption to make.

So, here it is again mostly for the nay sayers, a timely reminder in many ways.

Micro written message in a symbol code
beneath a WW1
Dutch postage stamp contained a 1600 word intelligence report.

The actual size of this stamp was
 approximately 30 mm X 34 mm

Magnified image, please note whilst the base image is as
found, I have added colouration to the stamp to reflect the actual appearance.
This image was found as the result of research amongst UK Military Intelligence files and confirmed by other documentary evidence dating back to WW1. At that time 'MI C', the forerunner to MI6 which was based in a one-time hotel in Folkestone in the  UK.

One of the many people recruited by this section was Louise de Bettignies who formed the highly successful 'Alice Dubois Network'. Louise recruited some very special people including the man who prepared this coded micro written message, a Paul Bernard, Belgian Map Maker, The code translated to a 1600 word intelligence report and is believed to have warned the British of the locations of a number of German gun emplacements. As a result these locations were themselves bombarded.

A Harkness Connection

Another valued member of Louise's team was Marie-Leonie Van Houtte. There is a lengthy story of the exploits of Louise and Leonie and we will be discussing that further in posts to follow. For now though the focus is on the use of Micro Writing by the British MI C section and the link via Leonie to her great niece, Marie-Ann Harkness who lives in the US. The surname could be a coincidence of course, it is her married name and at this time little is known of her husband's connections. I should also say that I have attempted to contact Marie without success to date, I am hoping that someone may know of her and her family if to do nothing more than to discount any connection to the relatives of Jestyn. I gratefully acknowledge the input and assistance of Byron in the initial investigation stages.

Back to the postage stamp, the size of the letters is around .5 mm and as you can see the writer was able to pack a significant number of them behind the postage stamp. Until the rediscovery of this stamp it was thought that clandestine messages were actually written on the back of the stamp however there is a good reason why that shouldn't be the case and it relates to the issue of ink types and the nature of adhesive on the stamp itself as well as the size of the letters. The 'glue' on the stamp would have formed ridges and whilst it would be possible to write larger letters, 1.5 to 2 mm in height, directly on to the stamp, writing at the micro letter level would have presented difficulties.

What does the code that has been written on the stamp actually mean? Thanks to input from Nick Pelling of Cypher Mysteries, we now that this is a simple 'PIGPEN' code comprised of symbols and each symbol equates to a letter of the alphabet. Referring back to the source documents, it is known that the Alice Network were particularly efficient at their work and were in the habit of adding another level of encryption to their codes. If that is the case here, then the letters that result from decoding the above stamp message could belong to another cipher, Playfair or Vigenere were in use at that time.

So, how would you go about decoding what lies beneath the stamp? Below is the key and an example for you to follow:



In our research we uncovered many other examples of Micro Writing used by MI6 and its predecessors, below is one example complete with another concealment method:
Micro Written Intelligence Report

Micro Message Concealed in a Pen.
Not wishing to be unkind to the learned detractors to the existence of Micro Writing, it does seem that they were well off track and perhaps now they will review their findings and may even set about some further valid research of their own.

It must surely follow that if these incredibly smart people back in WW1 could do what they did with micro-writing, encoding and concealment, and there is a lot more to come on that topic, it would be a very short step indeed to have them conceal their writing within larger letters as per the Somerton Man Code and that is exactly what happened as you will read in future posts.

Appropriate thought for the day:


Miguel de  Cervantes

Another Image

Added this image for you Pete Bowes:

What do you see here? Look carefully and from different angles.