A lawyer was charged earlier today with stealing more than $65,000 from his attorney trust account, said Prosecutor Theodore J. Romankow. The trust account funds were from the proceeds of house sale in Rahway that occurred in 2008.

Matthew Turlik, DOB: 1/16/1965, of Elizabeth is charged with two counts of 3rd degree theft, 3rd degree forgery and 3rd misapplication of entrusted property.

An investigation was launched in February 2010 after the son of the owner of the property contacted the prosecutor's office stating that Turlik had failed to distribute the proceeds of the sale and the remaining assets of the estate, said Romankow.

Investigators found that Turlik forged signatures on trust account checks and then cashed them at his bank, said Romankow. If convicted on the charges Turlik faces disbarment and prison time.

This remains an active investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call the Special Prosecutions Unit of the Prosecutor's Office at 908-527-4500.

These criminal charges are mere accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.