On December 23, The Himalayan Times writes on its online portal “Charles Sobhraj ‘The Serpent’ released from prison, sent to the immigration department for deportation”. Further, it writes,
“Charles Sobhraj, a French serial killer who was convicted and sentenced to life in prison for the 1975 murders of two North Americans, has been released, today. The 78-year-old serial killer was released from prison after 19 years for good behavior, citing poor health, and after having served the majority of his sentence. He had been filing habeas corpus petitions at the Supreme Court for the last four years, citing advanced age and a heart condition.”
Today, I will try to explore more about the man who ‘had also served 21 years in an Indian prison before escaping it in 1986. The serpent, his nickname for his disguise and escapade, has been transferred from Central Jail to the immigration department. (The Himalayan Times)’
Who is Charles Sobhraj?
Charles Sobhraj is a French serial killer and thief who is believed to have committed a series of crimes in the 1970s, mainly in Thailand and Nepal. He was born in Saigon, Vietnam in 1944 and later moved to France, where he was convicted of several crimes. He was known for targeting Western tourists in Southeast Asia and was dubbed the “Bikini Killer” and the “Serpent” by the media. Sobhraj was eventually arrested in 1976 in New Delhi, India, and was sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of an American tourist. He was later extradited to France, where he was convicted of additional crimes and served additional prison time. Sobhraj was released from prison in 1997 but was rearrested in 2003 and convicted of the murder of a French citizen in Nepal. He remains in prison in Nepal.
Here are some interesting facts about Sobhraj:
- Sobhraj was known for his charm and ability to manipulate people, which helped him evade capture for a long time. He would often use aliases and false identities to avoid detection.
- He was suspected of committing at least a dozen murders but was only convicted of a few.
- Sobhraj was known for targeting Western tourists in Southeast Asia, particularly in Thailand and Nepal. He would often drug and rob his victims before killing them.
- He was arrested in 1976 in New Delhi, India, after being caught attempting to drug and rob a group of French students.
- Sobhraj was sentenced to life imprisonment in India for the murder of an American tourist, but he managed to escape from prison in 1986. He was eventually recaptured and extradited to France, where he was convicted of additional crimes.
- Sobhraj was released from prison in France in 1997 but was rearrested in 2003 and extradited to Nepal, where he was convicted of the murder of a French citizen.
- Sobhraj has been the subject of several books and films, including the BBC documentary “The Serpent,” which was released in 2021.
- Despite his criminal past, Sobhraj has a significant following and is considered a celebrity in some circles. Some people even visit him in prison in Nepal.
Why is he deported?
Charles Sobhraj was not deported, but rather extradited from one country to another. Extradition is the legal process by which a suspect or defendant in one jurisdiction is transferred to another jurisdiction to face criminal charges.
Sobhraj was arrested in 1976 in New Delhi, India and was sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of an American tourist. He managed to escape from prison in 1986 and fled to France, where he was arrested and convicted of additional crimes. He was released from prison in France in 1997.
In 2003, Sobhraj was arrested in Nepal and was later extradited to Nepal to stand trial for the murder of a French citizen. He was convicted and is currently serving a life sentence in Nepal. So, he was not deported, but rather extradited from France to Nepal to face criminal charges.
Sobhraj is a French citizen and was convicted of crimes in France before being extradited to Nepal. If he were to be deported from Nepal to France, it is possible that he could face additional criminal charges in France related to his past crimes or any new offenses he may have committed while in Nepal. However, this would depend on the specific circumstances of his case and any evidence that may be available to support such charges.
It is also possible that Sobhraj could be released upon his return to France, depending on the outcome of any criminal proceedings and the terms of his sentence in Nepal. It is not uncommon for countries to extradite suspects or defendants to stand trial in their home countries, and the process can involve cooperation between the relevant authorities in both countries.