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‘Fake’ lawyer nabbed in Eldoret

Law Society of Kenya (LSK) North Rift branch has asked Eldoret town residents to be wary of the influx of fake lawyers allegedly migrating from Nairobi and Nakuru to North Rift towns.

Following the increase in fake lawyers, LSK chapter president Henry Kenei appealed to litigants to do background checks, before engaging the services of anybody claiming to be a lawyer.

Mr Kenei was speaking at Eldoret Law Court on March 22 after a man was charged with masquerading as a lawyer.

Dennis Nyairo,42, was charged before Eldoret Principal Magistrate Kimani Mukabi with personation contrary to section 382 of the penal code.

The charge sheet stated that on March 19 at Eldoret law court in Soy Sub County with intent to defraud falsely presented himself to Vincent Khaimba Shibonji as an advocate.

Mr Nyairo, who claims to have come from a law firm situated in Nakuru, had appeared in court ready to represent his client before other lawyers and the magistrate became suspicious.

When he was asked to identify himself, he was not able to present his practicing number to the court and even lawyers present in court were not able to relate with him.

He was immediately arrested by police officers manning the court and taken to Eldoret police station.

Mr Nyairo denied the charges and was released on a Sh100,000 bond with a similar surety.

The matter will be mentioned on April 8 for further directions.

The incident was not the first one in the region; there have been various allegations where residents have raised concern over people masquerading as lawyers in town conning unsuspecting citizens.

It is alleged that some of the fake lawyers operate in cohorts with some law firms to win the attention of unsuspecting clients.

Mr Kenei asked residents to do an in-depth search before engaging anybody claiming to be a lawyer.

“Before engaging the services of anybody who claims to be a lawyer, ask people around you to help to confirm if he or she is a genuine lawyer,” said Mr Kenei.

Mr Kenei told litigants to be using search engines available on advocates’ websites to ascertain the genuineness of lawyers operating in their regions.

He also warned litigants against engaging the services of lawyers who have not renewed their practicing certificates.

He further told Kenyans to always be asking for practicing certificates of lawyers representing them.

At the same time, Mr Kenei warned lawyers associating with fake lawyers that they risk revocation of their practicing licenses.

An arrest warrant has been issued for a Kenyan man accused of practising law without qualifications after he skipped court, the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) bar association says.

In October 2023 a man alleged to be a fake lawyer was arrested in Nairobi after it was alleged that he had handled 26 cases in court of appeal, high court and Magistrate courts without being noticed.

The suspect, Brian Mwenda was arrested by the Law Society of Kenya Nairobi Branch Rapid Action Team (RAT) over the claims of pretense.

Videos of the suspect allegedly representing the former Mungiki leader in televised court proceedings went viral.

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