Attorney accused of fraud to head to trial

CREATED Sep. 20, 2011 - UPDATED: Sep. 20, 2011

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  • Diane Pathieu reports. Video by wtmj.com

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MILWAUKEE - An attorney from Brookfield, accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars, has waived his right to a preliminary hearing.

Thomas Bielinski, 52, faces charges of theft by fraud.

He has been accused of stealing more than $500,000 from people who had unclaimed funds held by Milwaukee County.

Prosecutors say Bielinski even stole money from dead people.

The criminal complaint says he filed 47 fraudulent claims.  43 were approved and paid.

"I'm just trying to survive in the world like everyone else," said Ronald Strasburg, a fraud victim whom TODAY'S TMJ4 talked to in August.

"To find out you've got this little bit, and someone takes it away from you, it's amazing, unbelievable."

Bielinski was to head back to court at the end of September.