“Project Serpo” is the name given to an alleged top-secret exchange program between the US government and an alien (non-existent) planet called Serpo. Various details of the exchange program have been described in several UFO conspiracy stories, e.g. on the UFO discussion fora run by UFO conspiracy enthusiast Victor Martinez and, in particular, as detailed on serpo.org, which is is Bill Ryan’s website.
The story usually involves Roswell, and maintains that US government contacted the home planet of the alien craft to establish some sort of diplomatic relationship between the US and Serpo (Serpo is supposed to be located in Zeta Reticuli, the home of what other UFO conspiracy theorists believe to be the home of the Greys), including sending twelve military personnel to visit the planet (all of them later died from “after effects of high radiation levels from the two suns,” which is not consistent with the actual Zeta Reticuli but convenient for explaining away the absence of witnesses). Much of the information has apparently been contributed by a guy who claims to be USAF Sergeant Richard Doty, but then again Doty has been involved in quite a range of UFO conspiracies with little connection to each other. Another problem with the theory is of course that Serpo fails to exist, that we know quite a bit about Zeta Reticuli (incompatible with the conspiracy theories), that the accounts violate most laws of physics (and logic), and that there is a total absence of evidence to even begin to back up any of the claims. But such are UFO conspiracies.
Apparently many ufologists believe Project Serpo to be a hoax, but since we are dealing with people with a tenuous hold on reality, even these have a tendency to think of it as a hoax perpetrated by the American military and intelligence communities as a cover for real secret programs.
It should be mentioned that Bill Ryan, a chief proponent of publicizing the Project Serpo claims, stepped down from his role as webmaster for the Serpo material in 2007. He still thinks an extraterrestrial exchange program did occur (because he wants to – not because of evidence), but admits that the Serpo releases definitely contained disinformation. The current maintainers of the site are apparently very disappointed that Anonymous is not pursuing their story. This gullible story on the project by author Steve Hammons does not put Hammons’s other authorship in a very confidence-inspiring light.
Diagnosis: Retired, true, but still apparently pretty crazy.