A Nigerian man has reportedly been arrested after practicing as a lawyer for 10 years using fraudulent law qualifications.
According to Nigerian media, Peter Adogun started practising in 2007 after stealing an Abuja based lawyer, Inufin David Taiwo’s qualifications.
Apart from representing clients in lower courts, Adogun had also represented prominent clients in the Supreme Court, winning many cases against bonafide lawyers.
Adogun met his Waterloo following a petition written to the police on behalf of the Ilorin branch of the Nigerian Bar Association by its legal adviser, Oyetunji Ojuokaiye, on his activities as a fake lawyer.
Police prosecutor, Nasir Yusuf said that the suspect was charged with certificate, identity theft.
“The suspect jumped police administrative bail after being arrested while appearing before an Area Court in Ilorin. He was, however, rearrested on the rooftop of his house on January 7, 2017.
“It was discovered that the accused had falsely taken the credentials of one Inufin David Taiwo, an Abuja-based lawyer, under the guise of helping him to secure job in an oil company, only to come to Ilorin and start practicing as a lawyer with the photocopies.
“It was revealed that the suspect has practiced as a legal practitioner and appeared in several matters at all levels of Nigerian courts, up to the Supreme Court, winning several cases in the process.
“Found in his possession at the point of arrest included complete legal practitioner’s robe, legal books, complimentary cards, copies of legal processes filed in several courts and other incriminating items relating to his fraudulent legal practice.
“The owner of the certificates who claimed to know the suspect said that Adogun was a client at the office where he observed the mandatory one-year National Youth Service Corps,” said Police prosecutor, Nasir Yusuf.
This comes just less than six months after another fake attorney, 66, was arrested in Lagos after having practiced for more than 20 years.
45 percent of lawyers in India are fake: Report
India is another country which is grappling with a sad reality of nearly half of its lawyer’s population being fake – if the Bar Council of India’s (BCI) two year old verification drive is to be believed.
Earlier this week, BCI chief Manan Kumar Mishra announced before Chief Justice of India J S Khehar and other senior Supreme Court judges that its ongoing drive had already cut the number of genuine lawyers to 55-60% of those roaming court corridors across the country.