Lawyer Faces Scrutiny For Fraudulently Obtaining Court Ruling

By The Weekly Vision Team

While Kenyans seek the assistance of lawyers to navigate legal challenges, some are known for resorting to unethical tactics to subvert the course of justice. One such case is that of a company called Advanced Innovations Ltd. The company was involved in a legal tussle with one Silah Koech (Case 13 of 2013) where during the proceedings, Mr Alphonce Mutinda of Mutinda & Co. Advocates, the alleged legal representatives of Advanced Innovations Ltd. appeared in court on behalf of the company without their consent. 

The lawsuit was initiated at the Employment and Labour Relations Court in Nairobi by Silah Koech, who worked closely with Alphonce Mutinda to claim and act as the representative of Advanced Innovations Ltd falsely. The law firm of Mutinda & Co. Advocates is run and managed by Mr Alphonce Mutinda, who was once the legal advisor to then Nairobi Governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko.

The Weekly Vision contacted Mr Mutinda of Mutinda & Co. Advocates for his comment; below is his response by WhatsApp. ‘Morning, I am aware of the matter and the ruling, but the matter proceeded in my absence, as at that time I was bereaved. I have instructed my advocate to file an application for stay, setting aside the orders of the court since I am even named as an interested party yet I was not even formally joined as a party—end of quote.

The Respondent in the case (Advanced Innovations Ltd.) filed a Notice of Motion Application dated November 3, 2023, seeking to be heard for orders that this Honourable Court be pleased to grant leave to the Law Firm of Maina & Macharia Advocates LLP to come on record for the Respondent, that this Honourable Court be pleased to stay the execution of the judgment entered on November 23, 2023, and the resultant decree issued on April 25, 2019 pending hearing and determination of this application, and finally that this Honourable Court be pleased to set aside the judgment dated and delivered on November 23, 2023.

The court was notified that a Memorandum of Appearance dated September 19, 2013, by the firm of Alphonce Mutinda & Co. Advocates filed on behalf of the respondent, but with completely no instructions whatsoever from the respondent (Advanced Innovations Ltd).

In their response, Advanced Innovations Ltd. averred that it was never served with the summons or the pleadings in the matter and that Sila Koech and the firm of Alphonce Mutinda & Co. Advocates acted fraudulently and in collusion with one another to dupe the Honourable Court in issuing orders against Advanced Innovations Ltd. in a suit it was never aware of.

Further, the court was notified that no agreement or instruction note was ever given to the firm of Alphonce Mutinda & Co. Advocates to act on behalf of Advanced Innovations Ltd., which was not aware of the suit anyway. According to Advanced Innovations Ltd., it only became aware of the existence of this suit on October 13, 2023, when persons claiming to be working for Dancy Auctioneers visited its office.

The court further noted that “there is an allegation of impropriety against the firm of M/s Alphonce Mutinda & Company Advocates, who were on record for the respondent. The Court gave a preliminary ruling in which it sought to have the advocate impugned in the proceedings herein as Alphonce Mutinda & Company Advocates, but the advocate failed, refused, or neglected to appear.”.

It was further noted that “it is clear the advocate previously “on record” for the respondent had not been instructed by the respondent. ”M/s Alphonce Mutinda & Company Advocates practised fraud on this Court, and for this, sanctions will be issued in the form of a complaint to the Advocates Disciplinary Committee of the LSK, who will be served by the Deputy Registrar of this Court with a copy of this ruling.”

A ruling by Judge Nzioki Wa Makau dated February 15, 2023, reads in part, “The said firm, M/s Alphonce Mutinda & Company Advocates, did not have any instructions to represent the respondent but pretended to do so, and in addition, poorly represented the respondent by not attending court when required to do so. As such, the Law Society of Kenya should take action against the lawyers involved to ensure there is no repeat of such by crooked lawyers”.