Sobhraj, a french serial killer, was the focus of a recent court ruling in nepal. sobhraj was linked to a string of murders of young western backpackers on the hippie trail in india and thailand in the 1970s, for which he was convicted in two separate trials for the murder of an american woman and a canadian backpacker. he was also known as “the serpent” or the “bikini killer” for his deceptive disguises, ability to escape prison and tendency to target young women.
Court ruling ordering sobhraj’s release was handed down in nepal’s supreme court in 2021. prior to his convictions in kathmandu, sobhraj had already spent two decades in jail in india for poisoning a busload of french tourists. following his release from india, sobhraj was arrested for bronzich’s murder in 2003 after being spotted in a casino in kathmandu.
Was able to escape from prison in india by drugging the prison guards. he later claimed the escape was a ploy to get his sentence extended and avoid extradition to thailand where he was wanted for five more murders. he was sentenced to 20 years in a high security prison for murdering carriere, and was released due to his age, good behaviour and regular treatment for heart disease. he has been ordered to return to france within 15 days.