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‘Fake’ lawyer Brian Mwendwa to spend weekend in custody

The alleged “fake lawyer” facing forgery charges has lost round one of his bid to knock out the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) and its president Erick Theuri from the criminal case filed against him by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

Meanwhile, the suspect namely Mr Brian Mwenda Njagi will spend the Mashujaa Day holiday behind bars as his bail application has not concluded in time.

The holiday period stretches from October 20-23, 2023.

Dismissing as unmeritorious the application by Mr Brian Mwenda Njagi to lock out LSK and Mr Theuri from the case, Chief Magistrate Lucas Onyina, said the plea by the accused lacks legal threshold.

Mr Onyina said LSK is a body whose membership is drawn from the legal profession and therefore it has a legal right to participate in the criminal case since its members will be affected adversely by the actions of the accused.

“Even though LSK is an institution, its members are its shareholders and therefore entitled to representation in the case,” ruled Mr Onyina.

Asking the magistrate to deny Mr Brian Mwenda Njagi’s bond, the DPP and LSK lawyers comprising Mr Theuri, Bernard Atancha, Faith Odhiambio amongst others said the offence against the accused is serious and its effects are far-reaching.

“We urge this court to find that the integrity and sanctity of legal practice has a humongous bearing not only to the national development of the country but also the national security,” the magistrate was told by DPP.

The DPP further told the court, that the collapse of the legal practice in Kenya will lead to the collapse of the economy since treaties and other economic stimulus catapulted by the legal input will ground to a halt.

Mr Onyina was urged to deny Mwenda bond since he has abused the grain and fabric of law by purporting to be a member of the legal profession when he “knew he was not qualified to adjudicate legal matters in various courts.”

But defence lawyers Dr John Khaminwa and Danstan Omari urged Mr Onyina to tilt the scales of justice in favour of the accused “who is presumed innocent until proven otherwise.”

Mr Omari submitted that the offence is bailable and “that no manner of persuasion however by both the DPP and LSK can dislodge Article 49 of the Constitution which requires courts to release suspects charged before them on bond.”

Mwenda who has captured the attention of the nation after reports emerged that he has been impersonating an Advocate was charged on October 18, 2023.

Mr Mwenda faces six counts of making a false document, uttering a false document, and identity theft.

In the first count, he is charged that, with intent to deceive, he knowingly and fraudulently made a false document, namely, a certificate of admission p.105/21249/22 in the name of Brian Mwenda N.

He allegedly purported it to be a Certificate of Admission to practice as an Advocate of the High Court duly issued by the Deputy Registrar of the High Court.

Mwenda is said to have committed the offence between August 30, 2022, and March 3, 2023, at an unknown place within the country.

He faced another charge of fraudulently uttering a forged certificate of Admission in the name of Brian Mwenda N. on March 3, 2023, at the offices of the law firm of Mwangi Kiai LLP Advocates located in Westlands within Nairobi.

The accused was further charged with making a fake practicing certificate for the year 2023 in the name of Brian Mwenda N. purporting it to be a practicing certificate issued by the chief registrar of the judiciary.

The court heard on October 9, 2023, at the law firm of Micheka Omwenga and company advocates offices, that the accused person forged a practicing certificate for the year 2023.

Mwenda also alleged that on August 14, 2023, at an unknown place, he fraudulently and dishonestly used Advocates Admission a unique identifier assigned to Brian Mwenda Ntwiga, an Advocate of the High Court to access and use Law Society of Kenya online advocates account belonging to Ntwiga purporting to be him.

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