Woodbridge Attorney Gets 10 years for Stealing from Clients

Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey said an attorney from Metuchen, whose practice was in Woodbridge, was sentenced yesterday to serve 10 years in prison for the theft of clients’ funds stemming from two separate indictments.
 
Officials say Richard Zuvich, 65, of Metuchen, was sentenced to 10 years in a New Jersey state prison. Zuvich received two consecutive terms; 5 years for the misapplication of entrusted property and theft by unlawful taking regarding one client/victim, and a consecutive term of 5 years for theft by deception and theft by failure to make required disposition for another client/victim.
 
In addition, Superior Court Judge Pedro J. Jimenez Jr., ordered the defendant to pay restitution in the amount of $310,000 which he stole from one of his clients.
 
The sentence was imposed after Zuvich pleaded guilty on July 16, 2018, in accordance with a plea agreement reached with Middlesex County Prosecutor Christine D’Elia, to theft by unlawful taking and misapplication of entrusted property admitting he took the proceeds from a house sale, put the funds into a trust account, and then withdrew proceeds for his own personal gain without the clients’ authorization. 
 
In a separate case, Zuvich pleaded guilty to theft by deception and theft by failure to make required disposition admitting he negotiated an insurance settlement for a house that burnt down on behalf of a client, without her consent or knowledge. He then proceeded to steal the settlement money.
 
According to authorities, Zuvich was admitted to the New Jersey State Bar in 1980 and was suspended from the practice of law on May 30, 2017. On March 13, 2019, the Supreme Court of New Jersey ordered that Richard Zuvich be disbarred.
 
The defendant was arrested and charged following an investigation by Detective Andrew Kondracki of the Woodbridge Police Department and Detective Christopher Pennisi of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office.