24 Apr 2019

'Brilliant and inspirational' in-house counsel killed in Easter bombing

An in-house counsel and her solicitor husband among victims of Sri Lanka blasts that killed more than 300 people on Easter Sunday, some perpetrators “held degrees, LLMs”

Facebook/Anita Nicholson

Anita Nicholson, in-house counsel at mining company Anglo American in Singapore, was among the 300 killed in the series of blasts that rocked Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday. She died along with her two children, while her husband Ben Nicholson, also a solicitor, survived.

'Brilliant and inspirational'

Ms Nicholson was admitted in 2000, and was a regulatory and compliance managing counsel at Anglo American. She previously held roles at BP and HM Treasury - where she worked for 12 years - and was also a solicitor at international firm DLA Piper in London. Mr Nicholson is a partner in the Singapore office of international firm Kennedys. In a statement, Mr Nicholson said “ am deeply distressed at the loss of my wife and children. Anita was a wonderful, perfect wife and a brilliant, loving and inspirational mother to our two wonderful children. Alex and Annabel were the most amazing, intelligent, talented and thoughtful children and Anita and I were immensely proud of them both and looking forward to seeing them develop into adulthood. They shared with their mother the priceless ability to light up any room they entered and bring joy to the lives of all they came into contact with.”

Law students

A spokesperson for Anglo American said “We are in contact with Anita’s husband, Ben, and supporting him in any way we can. Our thoughts are very much with Anita’s and Ben’s families, colleagues and friends and we ask that you respect their privacy at this difficult time.” At least seven explosions were reported on Easter Sunday with churches and luxury hotels targeted. The current death toll is 359 people, with more than 500 total left injured. The country's deputy defence minister Ruwan Wijewardene told media, "We believe one of the suicide bombers studied in the UK and then maybe later on did his postgraduate in Australia, before coming back to settle in Sri Lanka." He also stated that most of the suicide bombers were “Some of them have I think studied in various other countries, they hold degrees, LLMs, they’re quite well-educated people.”