Irish lawyer who racially abused flight crew found dead after jail release

Simone Burns was targeted by trolls after video of her abusing Air India crew went viral

A human rights lawyer who was jailed after shouting racist abuse at Air India staff was found dead days after being released from prison, police have said. Photograph: Yui Mok/PA Wire

A human rights lawyer who was jailed after shouting racist abuse at Air India staff was found dead days after being released from prison, police have said. Photograph: Yui Mok/PA Wire

 

A human rights lawyer who was jailed after shouting racist abuse at Air India staff was found dead days after being released from prison, police have said.

Simone Burns (50) originally from Belfast, was given a six-month jail sentence in April for shouting at Air India staff during a flight from Mumbai to London last year.

Ms Burns was found dead at Beachy Head, East Sussex on June 1st, 13 days after her release on licence from Bronzefield women’s prison.

Ms Burns was called to the bar in 1992 and represented refugees from around the world. She was diagnosed with skin cancer in 2001 and underwent several operations.

A friend told the Daily Telegraph newspaper in the UK that Ms Burns’s “world fell apart” after her conviction and she had been targeted by internet trolls after the clip of her shouting went viral.

During her trial at Isleworth crown court in April, Ms Burns’s lawyers said she had no recollection of the incident and had received death threats online. She admitted being drunk on an aircraft and assault.

A spokesman for Sussex police said: “The body of a woman found at Beachy Head, Eastbourne, on 1st June has been identified as 50-year-old Simone Burns from Hove. The death is not being treated as suspicious and next of kin have been informed. The matter has been passed to the East Sussex coroner’s officer.” –Guardian

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