Request for information held on the Somerton Man

Tamam Shud made this Freedom of Information request to Australian Security Intelligence Organisation

The request was refused by Australian Security Intelligence Organisation.

From: Tamam Shud


Dear Australian Security Intelligence Organisation,

I would like to request that you make available all information held on the mysterious case of the Somerton Man found on Somerton Beach, on the 1st of December 1948, in Glenelg, just south of Adelaide, South Australia.

I believe this information is in national interest, and being over 60 years old would hold, in my mind, little risk to national security.

As there is speculation that this case may involve links to possible Russian Espionage, and your organisation was set up roughly a year after this incident, I believe you may hold some investigative intelligence on the subject which may or may not shed some light on the incident.

I understand that you are not required by law to provide any information under the Freedom of Information Act, and all information provided is at your discretion. I hope that the age of this information means all, if any information you hold, is of little interest being held from public view.

Kind regards,

Tamam Shud

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Australian Security Intelligence Organisation

Classification: UNCLASSIFIED

Dear Tamam Shud,

In regards to your email to this organisation requesting information under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (the FOI Act), please note that the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) is an exempt agency under subsection 7(1) of the FOI Act and it is therefore not possible to access any ASIO records under this legislation.

However, it is possible to request access to ASIO's historical records under the provisions of the Archives Act 1983. The Archives Act allows the public a right to access records of a certain age (known as the Open Access Period). Currently it is possible to access records created prior to 1990.

Further information about access to historical Commonwealth records can be found on the website of the National Archives of Australia (


ASIO Business Liaison Unit
W: | P: (02) 6234 1668

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