New Jersey prosecutors are investigating complaints that KIDS Inc., a model substance abuse program for adolescents used strong-arm tactics in dealing with several program participants, a prosecutor said Wednesday. *** with the Bergen County N.J. prosecutor's office said the inquiry does not include KIDS of El Paso Inc., an affiliate of the New Jersey KIDS center. A group of concerned parents helped start the El Paso center at 6500 Boeing about six months ago. In the New Jersey program, *** said, "The basic complaints we are looking at are possible mistreatment of participants, people being held against their will, intimidation and possible physical abuse. We are investigating the program in general, and not so much its director, Dr. ***." ***, who founded KIDS, also came under fire in Florida after similar complaints were alleged there by parents whose children were enrolled in Straight, a program similar to KIDS. *** said *** used to direct the Straight program in St. Petersburg, Fla. until he resigned to start KIDS. *** was unavailable for comment Wednesday at the Bergen County KIDS center. ***, KIDS of El Paso clinical director, said the New Jersey investigation should not affect the El Paso center. He said 70 adolescents, 40 males and 30 females, are enrolled in the El Paso center. Some are as young as 13 and six to eight are older than 20. The El Paso center treats substance abuse and compulsive behaviors, including eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia. ***, El Paso KIDS program coordinator, said he knows of only one family who withdrew the daughter from the El Paso program since its inception, but because of the confidential nature of medical cases he said he could not discuss details of the termination. Parents who enroll their children in KIDS pay a one-time $5,000 fee and sign a 30-page contract. KIDS of El Paso uses a five-phase program that can last from one to two years, depending on the individual being treated. The program uses peers to pressure adolescents into quitting substance abuse based on the premise that if peers got them started, then peers can help them stop. The KIDS program in general, *** said, has experienced a 75 to 80 percent success rate. "We have a lot of community support here. Our advisory board is made up of prominent Pasoans. We are respected and have a good reputation. "I'm familiar with the New Jersey center because I trained there for six months and there is no basis to the complaints. When a new agency comes into town that's 'Very' successful, there's going to be some jealousy " *** said.