News Charles Sobhraj, alleged snake killer, to be released from prison


Charles Sobhraj, the notorious 78-year-old French murderer convicted of killing backpackers visiting Asia’s “hippie trail” in the 1970s, was serving a 19-year sentence, the country’s top court ruled Wednesday. Years later, he will be released in Nepal.

Sobhraj has almost completed his 20-year sentence in Nepal, where he was convicted of the 1975 murders of American tourist Connie Jo Bronzich and her Canadian companion, Laurent Carriere.

The convicted killer, who has been charged with more than a dozen killings and has been dubbed a “viper” for his routine evasion from police and use of disguises, has been convicted of just two offenses in Nepal.

The judge ordered Sobhraj’s release within days, citing his advanced age, good character and having served his sentence, according to a ruling issued by the Supreme Court of Nepal. The judge noted that the convicted killer also had a heart condition and was expected to require open-heart surgery.

“His continuous incarceration violates the fundamental human rights of the prisoner,” the court ruled, adding: “If in any other circumstances his detention is not warranted, he should be released from prison today and the necessary arrangements made to send him on 15 Return to his country within days.”

Sobhraj’s lawyer, Lokbhakta Rana, told The Washington Post on Thursday that he praised the judge’s “very bold decision” to order his immediate release.

“I actually really didn’t expect that. But it was the right decision,” Lana added. “No one wants to release him.”

“He has been tried in accordance with the law, has been imprisoned in accordance with the law, and has been released in accordance with the law.”

Rana said he hoped his client would be released from a prison in Nepal within two weeks and return to France, where his lawyer said he holds French citizenship.

Sobhraj was imprisoned in India for 21 years from 1976 after being convicted of theft. After a failed escape attempt in 1986, just as his original sentence was up, Sobhraj was recaptured and sent back to prison, where he faced an extended sentence.

Sobhraj was wanted in arrests in Nepal, Singapore, Greece, Afghanistan, Hong Kong, Turkey and Iran on charges including car theft, drug use, robbery and murder of a young couple, according to Associated Press reports that year. Made friends.

When Sobhraj’s prison sentence was extended due to his attempted escape, which meant he was finally released from prison in 1997, an extradition request from Thailand, where he was wanted for 14 murders and faced the death penalty, was due to the 20-year statute. The extradition request was overdue, an Associated Press report at the time said.

For reasons that remain unclear, Sobhraj then returned to Nepal, where he is wanted by police for murder. In 2003, he was spotted by a Himalayan Times reporter at a casino in Kathmandu, arrested and eventually sentenced to 20 years in prison. years in prison.

His life has been the subject of several dramas – including Netflix and the BBC’s multi-part series Vipers, which will air in 2021.

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