FLATBUSH - The FBI has arrested a prominent Orthodox rabbi in Flatbush after raiding his home in a probe spanning from Brooklyn to New Jersey and upstate New York.

Agents collected evidence at the home of Rabbi Mendel Epstein in a case involving extortion.

Epstein was arrested along with one other rabbi and two additional people for allegedly bullying Orthodox husbands into granting their wives divorces.

In some cases, investigators say Epstein and his accomplices were paid $100,000 by women seeking divorces in a community where it's generally not accepted.

The FBI says it caught the suspects in a sting operation where the suspects allegedly plotted to kidnap a man to force him to grant a religious divorce.

The FBI also raided a yeshiva in Monsey last night.