NJ man sentenced to 33 months in prison for making, selling fake massage therapist licenses used for prostitution businesses

Massage tables
Massage tables Photo credit VI Images via Getty Images

TRENTON, N.J. (1010 WINS) — A New Jersey man was sentenced to nearly three years in prison Monday for making and selling bogus massage therapy training certificates for use in massage parlors that engaged in prostitution, officials announced.

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The 68-year-old Tewksbury man, Naresh Rane, owned and operated Axiom Healthcare Academy which allegedly offered classes in massage therapy training. Through his academy, Rane would sell the certificates to people who didn’t complete the required training for $1,000 to $2,600, court documents show.

Along with the certificates, Rane also offered phony transcripts listing classes and grades, according to authorities.

The scheme went on for four months, from Nov. 2013 to March 2014, during which time, Rane sold ten fraudulent massage therapy training certificates and transcripts to a former Westwood councilman who then gave them to prostitutes working in different massage parlors in Union, Passaic, Hudson and Middlesex counties. Rane admitted he knew the documents he was making and selling were used to disguise prostitution activities as legitimate massage services., officials said.

Rane previously pleaded guilty to an indictment charging him with knowingly and intentionally using and causing the use of facilities in interstate commerce to promote, manage, establish, carry on, and facilitate the business of prostitution. Along with his 33-month prison term, Rane was sentenced to three years of supervised release.

Featured Image Photo Credit: VI Images via Getty Images