Man gets 3 years for forging University degree
18 January 2015, 17:36
Vihiga - A man who forged a Maseno University degree certificate and transcripts in order to secure employment as a teacher was slapped with a three year jail term at the Principal Magistrate’s Court in Vihiga.
Joseph Mirambo Karanja appeared before Principal Magistrate Grace Mmasi on Friday for the judgement of his case where he was convicted on two counts.
He was accused of forgery and presenting altered documents to Shamakhokho Secondary School with intention of deceiving its Principal so that he could be considered for employment.
The accused used two different certificates with conflicting graduation dates, serial numbers and names.
“He presented scanned copies of the documents to the Principal of the school and became evasive when he demanded original copies of the certificates,” the judgement read in part.
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In a bid to verify the documents' credibility, the Principal went to Maseno University.
On the documents, the accused had indicated that he graduated on November 23, 2013 yet the official graduation date at the University was November 16, 2013.
He had taught at Shamakhokho for almost four months starting January 1 to April 2014, and had also taught in four other schools within the County.
The University also established that the said certificate of serial number 090640 had not been issued on the said year but in 2009 and belonged to one Tirop Elphas Kipchirchir.
The certificate however had the name Stephen Mwigale Akaranga, who graduated in 2013 and whose serial number was 131097 and used to teach with the accused at Senende High School in Hamisi constituency.
“The certificate didn’t have a hologram at the top right hand corner as is usually the norm and the Vice Chancellor who had signed on the document was not the one in the University on the purported date of graduation,” the judgement read.
The court found Mirambo guilty of swapped two certificates, but failed to completely verify the authenticity of the final document.
“The accused has been found guilty on both accounts, and though he has pleaded in mitigation as the family’s sole breadwinner, the offense is criminal and prevalent. He will serve three years on each account with the sentences running concurrently,” said Mmasi.
Mirambo also faces charges of defilement at the Hamisi Law Courts, where he is accused of defiling one of his students at Shamakhokho Secondary School during his tenure there.
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