A Bronx woman and former attorney has been sentenced to three to nine years in prison for practicing law without a license and stealing more than $53,000 from clients, Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson announced Nov. 28. Kehinde Jobi, 49, was sentenced by Acting Supreme Court Justice Martin Marcus (See Profile) after being convicted by a jury last month of two counts of third-degree grand larceny, one count of fourth degree grand larcency and eight counts of unlicensed practice of law.
Jobi was suspended from practicing law in October 2008 for taking money from clients. The First Department’s Disciplinary Committee found that she had converted $21,250 deposited with her as a down payment for a failed real estate transaction to her own use, and used a $5,600 escrow deposit to make a payment unrelated to its purpose. It also found that she failed to cooperate with the committee’s investigation.
Jobi resigned from the bar in 2009. However, according to an indictment filed by the Bronx District Attorney in 2010, Jobi continued to call herself an attorney and to represent clients and continued to steal their money. In total, she has stolen over $53,000 from 10 people and has fraudulently represented clients in a divorce, a bankruptcy and a guardianship proceeding for an elderly woman, among other cases, according to the district attorney’s office.
Before Jobi’s trial in October, Marcus ruled that statements she had made to the disciplinary committee were voluntary, despite their likely severe consequences, and were therefore not precluded by the Fifth Amendment (NYLJ, Oct. 25). Jobi’s attorney, Steven Brounstein of Papa, DePaola & Brounstein, declined to comment.