The Conscious Resistance Network presents:
Who Will Find What The Finders Hide? Pt 1
Researched, Written & Narrated by Derrick Broze
Produced and Edited by Jeremy Martin
Funded by our Patreon supporters
In our last documentary we talked about powerful billionaire and registered sex offender Jeffrey Epstein and showed how Epstein and his co-conspirators, were able to escape punishment for their role in abusing over 40 young girls. We noted that Epstein and people like him do not act alone in their efforts to feed their depraved desires. In Epstein’s case, he had an inner circle of people who helped him acquire young girls. In other cases there exist networks of individuals helping to pressure or even kidnap young children and force them into sexual bondage.
This time, we are going to explore the story of a cult that was suspected of international human trafficking in 1987. The Finders cult was a young group of men, women, and children who claimed to be nothing more than former hippies living an alternative lifestyle and practicing alternative parenting. The Finders were founded by a mysterious man with military connections nicknamed “The Game Caller” who believed in turning his life, and the lives of those around him, into a constant game or experiment.
Although more than 30 years have passed since The Finders made their way to the front page of newspapers all over the United States, questions still remain. Did the Game Caller’s games involve trafficking of children? What exactly were the finders finding? Why did this story make mainstream headlines and then disappear in less than a week? Was the story part of the “moral panic” of the 1980’s, or something more? We will answer these questions, and most importantly, we ask,
Who Will Find What The Finders Hide?
As we examine the story of The Finders cult I would like to make all of our viewers aware that everything in this film is documented and can be confirmed by looking at our transcript and sources. This story deals with accusations of Satanic activity, child trafficking, and intelligence operations. We take these claims seriously and went to great lengths to confirm the information we are about to present to you.
The Finders Arrested in Florida
On a chilly February morning in 1987, [Wednesday, February 4, 1987,] an anonymous caller tells the Tallahassee Police Department that two well dressed men are at a local park with six kids and a blue van. The children are described as looking “disheveled” with potential signs of abuse. Tallahassee Police arrive and question Douglas E. Ammerman and Michael Houlihan. The two men say they are taking the kids to a school for brilliant children in Mexico. The men also say the children are being weaned from their mothers. Authorities eventually take the men and children into custody. A search of the van turns up 20 floppy computer disks, a TSR-80 computer, and a “device that police say could be used to hook into a computer in another location by telephone”.
Immediately it becomes clear this case is not like any other. Following the arrests, the Associated Press reports that police had moved the six children from a shelter after receiving a “half-dozen” phone calls threatening the kids. [The AP notes] The children were moved to an undisclosed location where they were being protected by armed guards.
When interviewed by the police, the kids say the men are their teachers and that they have been living in a house with other children and adults. The police report also notes the kids are eating a raw food diet, covered in bug bites, and only fed as a reward for good behavior. The children are unaware of modern technology, including phones, televisions, hot water, staplers, typewriters, and electricity. The oldest child, Mary, says they receive instructions from “a man they called a Game Caller or a Game Leader”, the founder of The Finders, also known as Marion Pettie.
By Thursday February 5th, Tallahassee police confirm the children and men are part of a group known as The Finders. [U.S. District Court records in Washington indicate] A confidential police source previously told authorities the Finders were “a cult” that conducted “brainwashing” techniques at a warehouse and apartment in Washington D.C. [Source: Washington Post] This source tells of being recruited by the Finders with promises of “financial reward and sexual gratification” and of being invited by one member to “explore” satanism with them.
At this point officials with the U.S. Customs Service agency join the investigation due to suspicion that the potential crimes may have crossed state or national borders. The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigations are also said to be investigating the case. After learning the children are based in the D.C. area, the Tallahassee department contacts D.C. Metropolitan Police to establish the identities of the children. Tallahassee police [spokesman Scott Hunt tells reporters the TPD] learn that D.C. police are already aware of the Finders.
On Friday February 6, Virginia State police raid a 90-acre farm owned by Marion Pettie in rural Madison County, Virginia. Neighbors of the farm say children were often brought to the farm in vans, usually crying. An FBI report states that “evidence of a satanic/cult ritual was discovered”. The same report notes that all reports regarding Finders are to be classified Secret.
Meanwhile, DC Metro Police and U.S. Customs Service agents raid other Finders properties, including a duplex apartment building and warehouse in Washington D.C. Police reports and articles from 1987 indicate that the DC police removed large plastic bags filled with color slides, photographs and photographic contact sheets from the warehouse. Some of the photos were of naked children [source: Washington Post].
U.S. Customs [spokesman David Hoover] tells the Post, ″We’re not saying that it’s pornographic, but it has all the earmarks.″ A U.S. Customs Service report describes some of the photos as showing blood rituals involving children slaughtering goats while adults in white robes watch. It also describes that they found instructions on how to purchase children. The importance of this report written by U.S. Customs Service agent Ramon J.Martinez will become clear as we move on.
The Customs Service then claim to be looking into allegations of child pornography. Police spokesman Scott Hunt states that the Finders may been “accustomed to selling or smuggling the children of its members out of the country.” Then Capt. William White of the DC Police Department, declines to speculate on what the possibilities might be, but report written by D.C. police state that law enforcement believe the possibilities include kidnapping or some type of international market for children. Police investigator Cheryl Weigand says more than one of the children has been sexually abused, but she won’t say exactly how many.
Genghis Plato, also known as Robert Gardner Terrell, was the spokesperson for The Finders and the owner of a DC house that police say was used by members of the group. Terrell tells reporters the group are simply “rational people” and ″not devil worshipers or child molesters.″ Then another spokesperson for The Finders named Diane Sherwood, states the group are “hard working” with a “Protestant ethic”. ”We don’t even think we are a group,” she says. “We are just a network of co- operators.”
By Monday February 9, five days after the children and their two male chaperones were arrested, Washington metropolitan police announce they have found no evidence of wrongdoing or satanic activity by the Finders. Health officials in Florida then say they have no evidence of sexual abuse of the children. DC Metro Police Chief Maurice Turner Jr. states that the department has not uncovered any evidence to “corroborate allegations made by an informant that the organization is a cult and that its activities involve satanic rituals”. By Thursday February 12th, Gary Sheppard of the FBI’s Washington field office, says the FBI investigation has “not uncovered any evidence of federal violations.”
But according to the New York Times, “the statement from the Metropolitan Police Department conflicts with accounts from the police in Tallahassee, Fla., where the children were found, unwashed and hungry… Officials there say that morning “at least two of the children had signs of sexual abuse.”
Despite the initial reports, by the end of the week headlines are reporting that the charges are dropped and that the whole situation was a giant misunderstanding. Just like that, it’s gone from the news.
To be fair, it is true that a so-called “moral” or “satanic” panic seemed to grip the U.S. in the 1970’s and 80’s where parents were suspecting all kinds of people of being involved in devil worshipping cults or child trafficking networks. Although the vast majority of these cases have been dismissed as paranoia, the story of The Finders deserves a deeper look.
Let’s start by examining the available law enforcement documentation.
Documenting The Finders
The Finders cult incident in Florida took place more than 30 years ago. Although the mainstream version of events says that the whole thing was blown out of proportion, a reading of the reports from the Tallahassee Police Department, the FBI, and the US Customs Service leaves more questions than answers. The Customs Service report has been widely reported and circulated and the FBI documents were released through Freedom of Information of Act Requests. In 2018, thanks to the work of an activist, the 75 pages of Tallahassee police reports were also finally released to the public. This is the story of those documents.
Tallahassee Police Department Reports
On Wednesday February 4, at 4:50 pm, Tallahassee Police Officer Tony Mashburn responds to an anonymous call regarding two well dressed men seen supervising six children at Meyers Park in Tallahassee, Florida. The detective files a report with the department following the incident. His report serves as one piece of historical documentation of the case of The Finders. Mashburn’s report states that the “children were very dirty and unkept” with “bug bites on their entire body and scratches on their legs.” Mashburn also reports:
“When asked about the parents of the children, Suspect #1 became very evasive and stated that the children’s parents were in Washington D.C. Suspect #2 refused to give this writer any information and he pretended to faint when told he was under arrest.”
A second report written by Tallahassee police officer Judy Suchocki notes that the oldest child, Mary, does not know her last name but knew that one of the men was her father. She states that the men had several aliases. When asked where they were going, the children say they do not know, they were “just going different places” and staying at campgrounds. The children also say they haven’t seen their mothers for two months, “since before Christmas” because they were being weaned from their mothers.
The report states that the kids told officers the adults in their community had to do what the “game caller” told them to do and the kids did what the adults told them to. The children said they were not allowed in the house. The kids also told authorities that the adults communicated with “The Game Caller”, aka Marion Pettie, via a computer in the van. Later in the report it notes that the children claimed Marion Pettie “owns a man named Steve”.
When eldest child Mary was questioned about sexual abuse she became very evasive. She said there were no “bad touches” between the children and adults, and reportedly became fidgety and wanted the interview to end. The same police report mentions that an official with the Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services, or HRS, said the two children were confirmed cases of sexual abuse. Jane Pittilla of HRS stated that a Dr. Moorer had found one of the children lacked “anal spector control”, consistent with acts of sodomy. Also, one of the girls had signs consistent with vaginal penetration by the fingers.
On February 8, Tallahassee police filed another report mentioning a curious incident involving a computer found on Florida State University campus in front of the library. Apparently, on Thursday February 5, a student [named Robert Sorkine] spotted the computer inside of a phone booth and decide to take it home. After he saw details relating to the Tallahassee Police investigation, he turned it into law enforcement who determined the owner of the computer was “obviously persons who are involved with a group called ‘The Finders’”. A similar TSR-80 computer was found in the group’s van.
Once the warehouses in D.C. were raided, DC Metro Police shared the details of their findings with the Tallahassee police. In one report, DC Detective Bill Cagney describes finding a library of books which included books “concerning mind control”. By February 8th, Detective Jim Bradley of the DC Metro Police says he found no evidence of satanic activity at either DC residence. On February 10, the Tallahassee police are told by Lieutenant Lee Hart of the Culpeper, Virginia Police Department, that he has a contact within The Finders. This contact alleges that Marion Pettie has notified all Finders to flee and hide.
Curiously, Lt. Hart tells the TPD that Pettie would “probably go to Andrews Air Force base and get a military plane to China”. The strange thing is there are several mentions of connections to China elsewhere in the TPD report and in the US Customs report. Why were the Finders men carrying a Chinese-English dictionary with them? Mary said she learned to count to 10 in Chinese from a Chinese man at the warehouse, and, as we will see in a moment, the US Customs report on the Finders mentioned that children were being ordered from a contact in Hong Kong.
When the Tallahassee Police are finally able to determine and locate the mothers of the children, the women deny any allegations of satanic activity or sexual abuse of the children by the group. The women claim they don’t know why the men have multiple fake IDs or why they used the “traveling to a school for brilliant children in Mexico” excuse. The mothers tell police their lifestyle does not abuse children, but instead holds them in high esteem. This seems difficult to square with the fact that the kids were found covered in bites and scratches and malnourished with little food.
The women go on to describe The Finders lifestyle as rejecting private property in favor of communal property and centering around “ongoing loyalty, dependence, devotion to each other”. The police reports description of the group’s parenting style resembles modern “unschooling” methods. This hands-on method included trips to the zoo, learning in nature, and apparently, learning how to slaughter and skin a goat. When confronted, the women say the white “robes” the men were wearing during the goat slaughter were actually sheets used to cover their clothes from blood. The mothers also contradict the children by saying the kids are allowed to eat whenever they want rather than at predetermined meal times.
On Wednesday February 11th, assistant Investigator Rick Huffman is made lead investigator. By February 24, Huffman has officially ended the Tallahassee Police Department’s investigation into The Finders. Huffman writes:
“As to whether the children had actually been abused or neglected at the time of arrest seems to hinge on whether the children being dirty, possibly hungry, and living under camping conditions constitutes abuse or neglect.” Huffman concludes: “This investigator has learned of no group or individual actions which appear abusive or neglectful.”
Huffman does not mention the reports of sexual abuse by doctors with HRS.
And with that, the Tallahassee Police Department’s investigation into the Finders cult came to an end.
The US Customs Service Memos
The other main source documents are a series of memos from the U.S. Customs Services, the predecessor to the current US Customs and Border Protection agency. The memos were written by U.S. Customs Agent Ramon J. Martinez. In these pages are the most damning accounts of alleged trafficking of children and potential connections to intelligence agencies. Martinez filed three memos, two of which describe his experience participating in the search of the warehouse in D.C. alongside the Metro Police.
Once the Customs Service was notified that the children were allegedly enroute to Mexico, a Customs investigation was launched. The Metro Police reportedly contacted Customs because the agency maintains a network of child pornography investigators. Martinez notes that his office was contacted by Detective Jim Bradley with the Metro Police Department because he believed the Tallahassee case was “strongly related” to a case he was investigating in D.C.
Bradley also told Martinez that he originally investigated the two addresses connected to The Finders in December of 1986, two months before the incident in Florida. An informant had given Bradley information regarding a cult, known as the “Finders”, operating various businesses out of a warehouse. The information was specific in describing “blood rituals” and sexual orgies involving children, and a yet unsolved murder in which the Finders were alleged to be involved.
Martinez’s report states that during the execution of the warrant on the warehouse he was “able to observe and access the entire building”. As authorities searched the building they found tons of documents, a large library, a sauna, computers, maps with locations highlighted, a room with video recording equipment and much more. [They also found a man connected to The Finders known as Stuart Miles Silverstone.]
Martinez says his search of the documents revealed the following:
- Detailed instructions for obtaining children for unspecified purposes
- Instructions on the impregnation of female members of The Finders
- Telex messages using MCI mail, an early version of email
- One such telex specifically ordering the purchase of two children in Hong Kong to be arranged through a contact in the Chinese Embassy
- Another telex expressing interest in “bank secrecy” situations
- Documents identifying interests in high-tech transfers to the United Kingdom, and numerous properties under the control of the Finders
- Documents relating to terrorism, explosives, and the evasion of law enforcement
- [Also found in the “computer room” was] A detailed summary of the events surrounding the previous night’s arrests of the two adults and six children in a Tallahassee park
- And a set of instructions which appeared to be broadcast via a computer network which advised the participants to move “the children” and keep them moving through different jurisdictions, and instructions on how to avoid police attention
The following day, Friday February 6, 1987, Customs Agent Martinez meets Detective Bradley at the warehouse again. “I was again granted unlimited access to the premises,” he writes. This time Martinez says he observes “numerous documents which described explicit sexual conduct between the members of the community known as Finders”. He also says he saw a large collection of photos of unknown people, including some nude photos of people believed to be members of The Finders.
“There were numerous photos of children, some nude, at least one of which was a photo of a child “on display” and appearing to accent the child’s genitals. I was only able to examine a very small amount of the photos at this time,” [Martinez wrote.]
He also states that another officer showed him a photo album that contained a series of photos of adults and children dressed in white sheets participating in a blood ritual. Martinez says the photos showed the execution, disembowelment, skinning and dismemberment of two goats at the hands of the children.
Other documents include files relating to activities of the organization in different parts of the world, including London, Germany, the Bahamas, Japan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Africa, Costa Rica, and Europe. Martinez reports seeing one file entitled “Pentagon Break-In”. He also claims an MPD officer told him the group maintained intelligence on private families. The officer told Martinez about a game the Finders would play, in which the group would respond to local newspaper advertisements for babysitters, tutors, etc. and then a member of the Finders would gather as much information as possible about the habits, identity, occupation, etc., of the family.
Martinez’s final memo was filed April 13, 1987. Two months after his original memos, Martinez reasserts his view that “numerous documents were discovered which appeared to be concerned with international trafficking in children, high tech transfer to the United Kingdom, and international transfer of currency”.
Martinez says he talked with Detective Bradley on March 31 regarding a meeting to review the documents seized during the execution of the two search warrants. When Martinez arrives for the meeting on April 2, Detective Bradley is not available. Martinez writes that he “spoke to a third party who was willing to discuss the case with me on a strictly “off the record” basis”.
Agent Martinez is notified that all passport data gathered during the investigation was given to the U.S. State Department. The State Department then tells the Metro Police that all travel by the passport holders was within the law and no action was to be taken. Martinez notes that, “This included travel to Moscow, North Korea, and North Vietnam from the late 1950s to mid 1970s”, countries engaged in conflict with the United States at the time.
This unnamed third party also tells Martinez that “the investigation into the activity of the Finders had become a CIA internal matter”. Martinez’s final statements reveal:
“The MPD report has been classified SECRET and was not available for review. I was advised that the FBI had withdrawn from the investigation several weeks prior and that the FBI Foreign Counterintelligence Division had directed MPD not to advise the FBI Washington Field Office of anything that had transpired. No further information will be available. No further action will be taken.”
Just like that, with a disregard of credible reports that merited further investigation, the FBI, the Tallahassee Police, and the U.S. Customs Service were done investigating The Finders…
At least for the moment…
1993 – DOJ Investigation
Not everyone was convinced that the case against the Finders was over and done with. [A 1993 report from U.S. News and World Report states that] An unnamed Tallahassee investigator accused the police of dropping the case, “like a hot rock.” Apparently the Department of Justice too was uncertain whether the case was successfully investigated because in 1993 it [was reported that the DOJ] had begun an investigation into whether the Central Intelligence Agency was involved in some kind of cover up.
A December 1993 Associated Press report states, “The Justice Department said Friday it is investigating allegations the CIA used a ″front company″ run by a commune to train agency employees and that the CIA blocked investigation of the group.” [AP notes that] A CIA spokesman said the CIA sent some employees to a company called Future Enterprises Inc. for computer training in the 1980s. The spokesman claimed the CIA did not know about any connections between the company and the Finders.
The vice president of Future Enterprises at the time, Joseph Marinich, said the company had trained CIA employees in computer use and continues to do so, but that it had never been a front for anyone. However, a connection between The Finders and Future Enterprises appeared through Finders spokesman Robert Tobe Terrell, who worked at Future Enterprises at the time of the Florida incident. Terrell was fired by Marinich once he found out about The Finders.
Oddly enough, Future Enterprises currently maintains contracts with the Defense Intelligence Agency, a U.S. government agency which focuses on gathering intelligence on the military intentions and capabilities of foreign governments and non-state actors.
[The Associated Press quoted a report from the Washington Times as stating that] Martinez had apparently sent his reports to Congress calling for investigations and had provided documents suggesting the CIA was blocking investigations of the Finders. [In a mind-blowing admission, the Washington Times stated:]
“A later Customs report says the CIA ″admitted to owning the Finders organization as a front for a domestic computer training operation but that it had ’gone bad.”
[The U.S. News and World Report article mentions that] Rep. Charlie Rose of North Carolina, and Florida Rep. Tom Lewis were calling for an investigation into the CIA.
“Could our own government have something to do with this Finders organization and turned their backs on these children? That’s what all the evidence points to. And there’s a lot of evidence. I can tell you this: We’ve got a lot of people scrambling, and that wouldn’t be happening if there was nothing here,” Lewis stated.
The article also notes that “law enforcement sources” say some of the Finders are listed in the FBI’s classified counterintelligence files. Unfortunately, the FBI files which have been released are heavily redacted. Still, the files do reveal important details.
The FBI Files on The Finders
In April 1994, the FBI requested all available documents on the “Finders Investigation” and received 21 documents from the U.S. State Department. These documents were considered “unclassified” by 2014. The documents confirm that in 1993 the DOJ ordered a preliminary investigation into allegations that the Finders were involved in sexual abuse of children and whether or not the intelligence community played a role in covering it up. The name of the person making these allegations is redacted but it becomes clear the documents are referencing US Customs Agent Ramon Martinez and his report from the warehouse raid.
Despite the heavy redacting, the files make it clear the FBI was taking note that Martinez had reached out to Congress calling for an investigation. One portion of the documents mention a Customs Service Special Agent who wrote a report claiming to have seen computer equipment with instructions on “obtaining children for unspecified purposes”. The report also mentions impregnating female members of The Finders, instructions on kidnapping, buying, and trading children. Finally, the report states that this unknown person – who is more than likely Ramon Martinez – claimed that another unnamed person worked with the State Department and the FBI’s Counter-Intelligence Division to cover up the crimes of The Finders.
This memo dated March 9, 1987 relates what was taking place behind the scenes during the weeks following the official end of the investigation into the Finders. Again, the document is so heavily redacted it’s hard to determine exactly what was said, but what is clear is that someone with the Metropolitan Police Department stated that none of the items claimed by Ramon Martinez were found at either Finders property and that there was no evidence of child exploitation, kidnapping, and no instructions on buying children.
The redacted document notes that a DC Metro Police Sgt. John [H.] Stitcher had been told by an unknown person to step away from the investigation into the Finders. However, another document claims that this never happened. It seems likely that Martinez and Stitcher would have met and discussed what Martinez saw, and, perhaps, the fact that Stitcher claimed he was told to back off the investigation into the Finders. Either way, the FBI files note that by 1993, Sgt. John Stitcher was dead.
[Another report from the FBI Special Agent in Charge says that] “the bottom line was that the Tallahassee investigation was not impeded/influenced by any agency”. An unnamed Special Agent with the FBI’s Washington Metropolitan Field Office and an officer with the DC Metro Police were both interviewed in November of 1993 and claimed that they had no direct knowledge of evidence indicating child abuse or exploitation or interference from the U.S. intelligence community. Martinez stated that he believed he was correct in his original report.
The FBI files show the bureau searched the government’s internal databases for names thought to have been used by The Finders, including “Finders Transnational”, “Finders Transnational Ragged Mountain”, “Women’s Network Service”, “General Scientific Corporation”, and the aforementioned “Future Enterprises”. As with Future Enterprises, it is believed these businesses may have been fronts operated by The Finders.
After all this – the initial incident in Tallahassee, the raids of the warehouse and apartments, the end of the investigation – the two male members of the Finders were released from jail. A Washington Post article from June 1, 1987 mentions that four of the children were returned to their mothers while the other two were placed in foster homes. The article also notes that two of the mothers followed instructions given by Pettie and refused to get a lawyer or respond to the courts and instead, left Florida and returned to Washington D.C..
After interviewing dozens of people directly involved in the case and reviewing hundreds of documents, the DOJ concluded there was no evidence of child abuse or trafficking, satanic cult activity, or law enforcement complicity. In the minds of the authorities, the case was closed. However, as we have uncovered here, there are many details that ought not be forgotten.
While it may be easy to dismiss these claims as nothing more than conspiracy, it’s difficult to ignore the statements from the Tallahassee Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services regarding signs of sexual abuse. There’s also the original reports from Customs Agent Ramon Martinez describing detailed information related to trafficking.
When asked for a comment about his initial report, Martinez agreed to speak to us as long as we did not record. In one email exchange, Martinez makes it clear that he stands by his original report and does not believe anyone will be held responsible. On November 1, 2018, Martinez wrote:
“Nothing’s ever come of any info I’ve provided over the years, except professional grief. I have no delusions of anyone ever being held accountable for what I know happened. Without that potential, I really don’t see the point.”
Martinez also stated that what he witnessed “predates Donald Trump by 40 years”. Unfortunately, before we could uncover any more details about what exactly he saw, the former Customs Agent backed out and ended communication.
Regarding Martinez’s statements about professional grief, court records show that in 1994 he was accused of improperly disclosing case information to a close co-worker of an individual under investigation. He was reassigned from the position of Criminal Investigator and his pay was docked. Whether Martinez believed this was done in retaliation or not we do not know because he refused to respond to any more questions.
Is it really possible that Martinez imagined the whole thing? Could the doctors have been mistaken when observing signs of sexual abuse on two of the kids? It’s possible. Anything’s possible. Including the possibility that agents in the FBI, Customs Service, and Metro Police covered up what US Customs agent Martinez saw and then made him look incompetent.
On the other hand, it’s also true that none of the former members of The Finders have come forward to say the group was involved in child trafficking or sexual abuse. Even former members who sued the group and had plenty of criticisms, claim there were no signs of sexual abuse. One would imagine that even one member would leak the truth to the public if there was indeed something more to the story. However, one could also argue that anyone who was involved with the Finders and their alleged activity would be well aware how connected and powerful the group is and might be too terrified to blow the whistle.
In part 2 of this investigation we are going to examine the origins of The Finders and the background of their founder, Marion Pettie. We also sit down with Robert Tobe Terrell, a long time member of The Finders, to allow him to share his version of what happened and ask whether the group was involved in trafficking, satanism, or worked as a front for the intelligence community.
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