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Last Updated: Saturday, 14 January 2006, 15:13 GMT
Murdered lawyer 'kind and gentle'
Tom Rhys Pryce
Mr ap Rhys Pryce had been out with friends
The family of a City lawyer stabbed to death just yards from his home say they will miss his "gentleness, kindness and consideration".

Thomas ap Rhys Pryce, 31, was mugged by two men in Bathurst Gardens, Willesden, north-west London on Thursday night.

The men attacked him again further up the street as he tried to get away, stabbing his body, hands and head.

His family said in a statement it was the "happiest time of his life" as he planned for his wedding in September.

Mr ap Rhys Pryce had proposed to his fiancee Adele Eastman in October.

He had rung her to say he was on his way home to the flat they shared after a night out with friends.

Words cannot express our sense of loss and sadness
Mr ap Rhys Pryce's family's statement

The Cambridge graduate and associate at Linklaters, was found at about 2345 GMT and pronounced dead soon after in hospital.

Police said he was subjected to a "ferocious" and "gratuitous" attack.

Officers think his attackers, who are black and in their late teens or early 20s, may have been hurt as Mr ap Rhys Pryce had "clearly tried to defend himself".

A post-mortem examination revealed he had been stabbed a number of times, including several fatal wounds the chest.

The statement from his family said: "It was the happiest time of his and Adele's lives when they became engaged in October 2005.

'Hugely missed'

"They were so looking forward to getting married in September this year and to starting a family together.

"Thomas and Adele's family and friends will cherish him forever and always remember him for his special qualities of gentleness, kindness and consideration, and his great sense of fun.

"He was a very unique and beautiful person.

"Words cannot express our sense of loss and sadness at what has happened - he will be hugely missed by everyone who knew him."

Police said they believe the two men left Kensal Green Tube station about 15 minutes before Mr ap Rhys Pryce.

Witnesses also say they saw two men in Bathurst Gardens before he walked down it.


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