Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office

                                 25 Kirkpatrick Street, 3rd Floor, New Brunswick, New Jersey, 08901 (732) 745-3300


                                *News Release*          Date: December 23, 2009




Toll collector sentenced for theft


Middlesex County Prosecutor Bruce J. Kaplan announced that a part-time toll collector for the New Jersey Turnpike Authority was sentenced today to serve a 364-day jail term and repay $5,523.35 that was stolen over a 13-month period.


Michael F. Yuhas (DOB 9/8/54) of Manchester also was placed on probation for five years and was forever barred from holding a public job.


During a hearing at the Middlesex County Courthouse in New Brunswick, Superior Court Judge Frederick P. DeVesa told the defendant he will not have to begin serving the jail term until December 23, 2012. By then, the judge expects the defendant to have repaid the toll money he took.


The judge said he was imposing the jail term ‘’to send a strong message to those who steal or violate the public trust.’’


Yuhas was sentenced after he pleaded guilty September 11, 2009 to a count of theft, admitting he took the money in various amounts between January 1, 2008 and February 21, 2009.


When Yuhas pleaded guilty, he waived his right to have his case presented to a grand jury in Middlesex County. The plea agreement was reached during negotiations with Middlesex County Assistant Prosecutor Brian D. Gillet.


Yuhas, who began working as a part-time toll collector in June 1998, was dismissed from his job in March 2009 following an investigation by the Turnpike Authority and the New Jersey State Police.