- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 1, 2015

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - Officials say they have arrested 30 bail agents in five Northern California counties on suspicion of numerous felonies for illegal business practices, including employing a felon as a bounty hunter.

The Department of Insurance said Monday the arrest sweep that began Thursday focused on Aladdin Bail Bonds, Luna Bail Bonds, Bail Hotline and four other companies it didn’t name. It says another bail agent was arranging his surrender.

The department says it immediately suspended the licenses of all 31 bail agents targeted in Santa Clara, Alameda, Monterey, San Benito and Merced counties.

An investigation found bail agents were scooping business away from competitors by paying jail inmates for providing information about newly booked inmates.

Officials say one bail agent was employing a convicted felon as a bounty hunter_a violation of the Bail Fugitive Recovery Act.

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