Kidnapping & Connections: An Interview With Investigator Logan Clarke
Logan Clarke is an accomplished, international private investigator with clout. Clarke and his firm Global Pursuit Investigations (formerly Clarke International Investigations) have an impressive history of helping rescue approximately 300 kidnap and runaway victims from around the world, and have been the subject of many documentaries, news articles, magazines, and TV shows.
Global Pursuit, original formed as Clarke International, in 1986 and from the beginning was poised to take advantage of a collaboration of talented and deeply connected individuals.
Clarke said it all began “During the Vietnam war [when] there were a bunch of us doing government stuff… and we lived in Southeast Asia. We worked with the American government and the English government. A lot of us were trying to figure out what to do and we had all of these phenomenal government contacts all over the world so… we got together with one of the former directors of Interpol, and I had come back and just started to get to know Alan Cardoza. We opened up Clarke International as a base, a licensed detective agency in California.”
The agency was also formed with Clarke’s wife, at the time. They teamed up with other investigators from other agencies to form an international task force.
Clarke and his agency have used their international connections and collective experience to overcome significant obstacles such as getting people out of a country with tactics ranging from going in as journalists, bringing entire teams into countries, and making fake movies.
He explains the importance of having international connections and personal relationships to be a successful private investigator. He has contacts with generals, politicians, Navy Seals, people at Interpol, people that owe him, and journalists.
Clarke states that “60 per cent of [his] success is contacts… it’s who you know and your ability to get to and get information that other people can’t get; 40 per cent is involved in talents and guts, and… 60 per cent of your business in being a private detective is having phenomenal contacts that other people don’t have.”
Case in point, in recent news, Clarke was instrumental in helping Texas resident, Stephen James, father of two, re-unite with his kidnapped sons, 9-year-old Zane and 12-year-old Matteo. They had been missing since June 20, 2012 and upon being rescued only had the clothes on their backs and “their feet were coming out the side of their shoes,” said Clarke.
Despite Stephen being awarded sole custody of the children, Alma Alicia James had fled from the U.S. to Mexico with her sons. She was eventually charged with First Degree Aggravated Kidnapping and Unlawful Flight.
Stephen hired Clarke to investigate the case because law enforcement had initially refused to help him. The case became quite involved and Clarke ended up working pro bono for 11 months until the boys were brought home to safety.
This case had sparked Clarke’s interest because “Stephen had served his country in three wars, twice in Iraq, and his country wasn’t doing anything for him” said Clarke.
Clarke said that the reason for law enforcement’s lack of help was that with “parental abduction cases it’s selective prosecution… police choose to call it a civil matter… parental kidnapping is not a civil matter, it is a criminal matter; it is a federal crime, and it is a state crime in almost every single state.”
Clarke credits the success of the case to his contacts with journalists and World Association of Private Detectives (W.A.D.) in Mexico. Once they located the boys, they had people across the street from him able to take a photograph and send it over the Internet to Clarke within hours.
Besides being involved in parental abductions, Global Pursuit also deals with human trafficking, hostage negotiations, internal thefts, and homicides, to name a few of the services offered.
Clarke said that he and his ex-wife were recently interviewed in an episode of On the Case with Paula Zahn involving a 25-year-old murder case. Clarke had solved the case, but the police wouldn’t listen to him. The man “killed his own granddaughter to get to his children” said Clarke. The grandfather was eventually arrested and got 40 years.
Although Clarke is trying to semi-retire, he says “like Pacino said, every time they think I’m out, they pull me back in… because some case comes up, some tragedy… other private detectives will call, they will get a case and say I don’t do this but there is a guy named Logan Clarke, and I will connect you with them.”
Clarke remains an inspiration to the profession and a testament to what is possible when highly skilled private investigators work together. He encourages investigators to join W.A.D. and reach out and collaborate with other members.