Ex-cop nabbed for distributing phony badges in NJ

A Staten Island man is charged with putting thousands of phony police badges in the wrong hands by running schools for bounty hunters in New York and New Jersey.

Robert Neves is charged with distributing 3,000 fake badges to graduates of the U.S. Recovery Bureau, many of whom are convicted felons. The school has an extensive Web site that offers training to become a bounty hunter in three days for $860. Neves is a former New York City police officer.

Authorities say graduates of the Union City school have used the fake badges to avoid traffic tickets, and, in one case commit robbery by impersonating an officer.

Federal authorities say the U.S. Recovery Bureau taught students how to restrain people with batons, pepper spray and handcuffs. The feds started to investigate the school after the arrests of a number of the school's graduates.

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