Gil Pérez was a Spanish soldier of the Filipino Guardia Civil who unexpectedly appeared in Mexico City’s Plaza Mayor on October 24, 1593 (almost 9,000 nautical miles across the Pacific from Manila). He was dressed in the uniform of the Palacio Del Gobernador guards of the Philippines and stated that he had no idea how he got to Mexico.
Pérez said that he had been on watch duty at the governor’s mansion in Manila only seconds before arriving in Mexico. He also stated that (when he found out he was no longer in the Philippines) he had no idea where he was or how he got there.
According to Pérez, Chinese pirates assassinated his Excellency the Governor of the Philippines, Gomez Perez Dasmarias, only seconds before he arrived. He further stated that he felt dizzy after long hours of duty in Manila and leaned against a wall, closing his eyes; then he opened his eyes a second later to find himself somewhere else.
When Pérez asked a bystander where he was, he was informed he was in Mexico City’s Plaza Mayor (now known as Zocalo). When told that he was now in Mexico City, Pérez at first refused to accept it, claiming that he had gotten his instructions in Manila on the morning of October 23 and that it was thus impossible for him to be in Mexico City on the evening of October 24.
Guards in New Spain quickly realized about Pérez because of his assertions and his unusual Manila clothing. He was hauled before the authorities, notably the Viceroy of New Spain, Luis de Velasco, to whose residence he was taken.
The authorities imprisoned Pérez as a fugitive and for the chance that he was working for Satan. The soldier was questioned by the Most Holy Tribunal of the Inquisition, but all he could say in his defense was that he had traveled from Manila to Mexico “in less time than it takes a cock to crow.”
Pérez, a devoted and decorated soldier, took everything in stride and worked with the authorities. He was eventually discovered to be a devoted Christian, and due to his exemplary behavior, he was not charged with any crime. However, the authorities were unsure what to do with the unusual scenario and kept him imprisoned until they reached a firm conclusion.
Two months later, news from the Philippines arrived via Manila Galleon, confirming the fact that Dasmarias was literally axed on October 23 in a revolt of Chinese rowers, as well as other details of the strange soldier’s incredible account. Witnesses corroborated that Gil Pérez had been on duty in Manila before he arrived in Mexico.
Furthermore, one of the ship’s passengers recognized Pérez and claimed to have seen him in the Philippines on October 23. Gil Pérez subsequently returned to the Philippines and resumed his prior employment as a palace guard, leading a seemingly routine existence.
Several authors have proposed supernatural interpretations for the narrative. Alien abduction was proposed by Morris K. Jessup and Brinsley Le Poer Trench, 8th Earl of Clancarty, while the teleportation theory was proposed by Colin Wilson and Gary Blackwood.
Regardless of the scientific studies on teleportation, Gil Pérez’s account is rather frightening, especially since he had no control over his transition from one location to another. Whether the story is true or not, it is always a fascinating tale that has remained unchanged for hundreds of years.