Points to note
- The lawyer was ordered to report to te court over the incidents that happened at former Cs Matiang’is home in the mid of last month
- Danstan Omari is the head Lawyer to former Interior Defense cabinet secretary Fred Matiang’i
The High Court on Thursday, March 9, extended orders barring the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) from summoning lawyer Danstan Omari over an alleged raid at former CS Fred Matiang’i Karen’s home.
The court further ordered DCI not to interfere with the lawyer’s daily routine until the case was mentioned on April 18.
However, the office Director of Public Prosecutions filed an affidavit opposing the case, arguing that advocate-client privilege did not extend to acts that amount to committing a criminal offence. The DPP argued that Omari had not demonstrated that the DCI acted without or in excess of the powers conferred upon them by the law.
Omari’s orders are not supported by any factual or legal foundation because he voluntarily published in electronic media the instructions given to him by his clientA source
“The police, in their capacity as an investigative agency, is statutorily authorised to summon any person for the purpose of interrogation if there is probable cause to believe that the person concerned is in possession or seized of information that may assist them in their investigations,” the court papers read in part.
In addition, DPP’s office further stated that Omari had not tabled any evidence to prove that he had been compelled to disclose privileged communication with his client.
“Omari’s orders are not supported by any factual or legal foundation because he voluntarily published in electronic media the instructions given to him by his client, so his complaint is merely an afterthought,” DPP’s office explained.
He added that his office was improperly enjoined as he was not part of the team investigating Omari.
The lawyer filed an application under the certificate of urgency on February 21, asking the High Court to quash the summon for interrogation by the DCI.
On February 22, High Court Judge Jairus Ngaah stayed the summon requiring Omari to appear before DCI.
“The granted leave will serve as a stay under summons prayer number five. Within seven days of the date of this ruling, the substantive motion must be filed and served “Justice Ngaah ordered.
Earlier on February 21, the DCI summoned the lawyer to present himself for questioning over the alleged raid at former Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i’s home.
While issuing the sermon, Senior Superintendent of the Police Michael Sang warned Omari of serious consequences if he failed to avail himself the next day.
“Failure to comply with the requisition constitutes an offence liable to prosecution,” DCI warned in a statement.
The detectives sought to question Omari over what they termed as publishing false information about an ongoing investigation.
On March 7, his client, former Interior CS, Fred Matiang’i, was grilled at the DCI headquarters along Kiambu Road. However, his lawyers, including Rarieda MP, Otiende Amollo, raised the alarm after the former CS was held for up to five hours.
“It is clear that this was not a criminal investigation. This was a vendetta and witch hunt! It is also clear that the DCI was not acting of their motion, but were awaiting instructions on what to do with Dr Matiang’i,” Amollo stated.
Matiang’i was released minutes later, with the DCI preferring two charges against him – conspiracy to commit a felony and publishing false information.