New York Daily News
Two Brooklyn men sold fake law enforcement badges online to people hoping to flash them to get out of traffic tickets and drug arrests, federal prosecutors allege.
Eduard Zabolotnny, 54, made the badges, credentials, ID cards and “law enforcement organization membership cards” and sold them on eBay as far back as 2019, netting at least $100,000, according to a federal complaint.
They included so-called Port Authority Police Benevolent Association car shields — which people affix to their windshields in the hope that a police officer might cut them a break on traffic or parking tickets — and a “lifetime” member card for the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association.
Many of those IDs went to Daniel Spektor, 21, who paid Zabolotnyy about $35,640 between May and October 2021, according to a federal complaint.
Spektor would turn around and sell the badges and IDs on his social media accounts for a profit, advertising them on his Instagram stories, prosecutors allege. He’d charge between $450 and $900, and offer testimonials from satisfied customers.
“I got a story for you,” one of those testimonials read. “I’m upstate and break a red light infront [sic] of a cop doing 90 in a 40, cop walks up sees the FOP on the windshield sees the cards, hands me back my stuff says have a nice day and drive safe. Bro!”
He even bragged on Instagram that he sold an FBI badge for $5,000, prosecutors said, and in January, he posted pictures of an FBI “Family Member” badge that he referred to as a “holy grail.”
“If you pull this bad boy out you’re getting out of a 200 in a 20,” he wrote, according to federal documents.
The badge, and the ID card that went with it, was similar to the kind of badge and ID Zabolotnyy sold on his eBay account.
Spektor even flashed a fake FBI badge of his own when he got pulled over for a traffic violation on Staten Island on Dec. 29, the feds say, telling the officer who stopped him that his uncle was a federal agent.
“The badge appeared the same or substantially similar to a legitimate FBI badge, which is designed by the FBI for use by its law enforcement agents,” U.S. Postal Inspector Joseph E. Marcus wrote in his affidavit. “The identification card had affixed to it hat appears to be a seal of the FBI.”
Both men, who live in Bensonhurst, were charged with breaking federal laws against possessing a badge or IDs with U.S. government seals and insignia.
Spektor was released on $300,00 bond, secured by his parents, while Zabolotnyy’s bond was set at $100,000.