Lawyer X: From a top lawyer to a popular pre-school mum

To the other mums at her child's pre-school she was simply 'Nicki', or if they followed her on Instagram - @nicki.supermummy.

Nicola Gobbo became popular with parents at a local kindergarten in Brighton, a rich suburb in Melbourne's beachside area, soon after signing her kids up at the centre.

The single mother joined the pre-school's committee and turned around the fortunes of the once struggling centre, leading her to receive a Victorian Government award.

But while those who saw Ms Gobbo at committee meetings or kissing her kids at the pre-school gate figured she was just another normal parent, it was far from the case.

On Friday the once high-flying criminal barrister was revealed as 'Lawyer X', who had passed confidential information from her gangland clients - including Carl Williams - onto police.

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Nicola Gobbo (pictured with Carl Williams, right, and his chief hitman Andrew 'Benji' Veniamin, left) was a top gangland lawyer before she turned into infamous police information - 'Lawyer X'

Nicola Gobbo (pictured with Carl Williams, right, and his chief hitman Andrew 'Benji' Veniamin, left) was a top gangland lawyer before she turned into infamous police information - 'Lawyer X'

After spending years defending some of Melbourne's leading criminals, Ms Gobbo (pictured) had two children and embraced life as a normal suburban mother - even joining the committee of a local pre-school

After spending years defending some of Melbourne's leading criminals, Ms Gobbo (pictured) had two children and embraced life as a normal suburban mother - even joining the committee of a local pre-school

For years her name and identity were suppressed until it was lifted by the High Court last week. 

Victoria Police argued that identifying Ms Gobbo as 'Lawyer X' would put the lives of her and her two children at risk.

The full bench of High Court judges agreed, but said there was more at stake.

'Large though those considerations may be, they do not detract from the conclusion that it is ­essential in the public interest for the information to be disclosed,' they told the court. 

Immediately after the decision, Ms Gobbo and her two children went into hiding.

This may well have been the first time the now infamous Lawyer X has explicitly expressed any concern for her, and her two children's, safety. 

For years she shared secrets of ruthless underworld gangsters with police with scant regard to the the lethal repercussions she faced if she were ever found out.

Paradoxically, it seems that Ms Gobbo's double-dealings were found out by several of her ex-clients - who had long suspected she was playing both sides. 

But while the sword of Damocles dangled precariously above Ms Gobbo's platinum locks she continued to hide in plain sight, bizarrely becoming a respected member of the local community. 

In September, she attended the Victorian Premier's Volunteer Champions Awards where she was recognised for her efforts at the local kindergarten.

The smiling crowd at Government House, in Melbourne, heard how the volunteer-run Brighton Playroom was 'thriving' thanks to 'Nikki's' skills and 'selfless leadership,'  

Ms Gobbo's name was able to be revealed on Friday after a High Court ruling lifted a gag order that had been in place to protect her and her two children. She is now in hiding, with fears her dangerous former clients and their families could seek revenge for her becoming an informant

Ms Gobbo's name was able to be revealed on Friday after a High Court ruling lifted a gag order that had been in place to protect her and her two children. She is now in hiding, with fears her dangerous former clients and their families could seek revenge for her becoming an informant

Less infamous on her list of regular defendants was Richard Barkho, a convicted drug trafficker who wasn't just a client but also the father of one of her children

Less infamous on her list of regular defendants was Richard Barkho, a convicted drug trafficker who wasn't just a client but also the father of one of her children

Carl Williams (pictured) pleaded guilty to four murders throughout the gangland years on the advice of Ms Gobbo. He was sent to jail where he was eventually killed himself in 2010

Carl Williams (pictured) pleaded guilty to four murders throughout the gangland years on the advice of Ms Gobbo. He was sent to jail where he was eventually killed himself in 2010

Ms Gobbo (left) also defended and snitched on convicted drug trafficker Tony Mokbel (right). He is among dozens of prisoners contacted by the Department of Public Prosecutions last year and told that they may be eligible for early release because of Ms Gobbo's double-dealing

Ms Gobbo (left) also defended and snitched on convicted drug trafficker Tony Mokbel (right). He is among dozens of prisoners contacted by the Department of Public Prosecutions last year and told that they may be eligible for early release because of Ms Gobbo's double-dealing

A couple of months later she hosted an end-of-year celebration for the kindergarten in a park in Brighton, where parents drank champagne from plastic cups and nibbled on homemade biscuits.

One woman who babysat Ms Gobbo's children told The Australian she would never have guessed her employer was 'Lawyer X'.

Up until two weeks ago she was still posting photos of her children on Instagram and happily mingled among the cafe dwellers just a short ride from where she used to practice law in Melbourne's CBD. 

Sources suggest Ms Gobbo only recently made the decision to skip town after she was told the date on which her identity would finally be revealed. 

Nicola Gobbo's greatest snitch jobs 

1. Rob Karam, John Higgs, Pasquale Barbaro and 33 co-accused for the largest ever seizure of ecstasy in the world. The drugs came into Australia in tomato tins. 

2. Tony Mokbel's brothers Horty Mokbel and Milad Mokbel. 

3. David Ilic was arrested in 2013 after police raided a Port Melbourne

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