They order the release of the serial killer ‘The Serpent’, of which they made a series on Netflix

The Supreme Court of Nepal ordered the release of Frenchman Charles Sobhraj, the serial killer portrayed as ‘the Serpent’ in the Netflix series and that he was responsible for several homicides throughout Asia in the 1970s.

The highest instance of the Asian country ruled that Sobhraj, 78, imprisoned in this Himalayan Republic since 2003 for the murder of two American tourists, should be released for health reasons.

Keeping him in prison continuously is not in line with the human rights of the prisoner“, said the Supreme Court.

“If there is no other case pending against him to keep him in prison, this court orders his release by today (Wednesday) and his return to his country within 15 days,” the court ruling continued.

After a troubled childhood and several prison terms in France for petty crimes, ‘the Serpent’ began traveling the world in the early 1970s, ending up in the Thai capital, Bangkok.

His modus operandi was to charm and befriend his victims – many of them Western backpackers in search of spirituality – before drugging, robbing and murdering them.

Sweet and sophisticated, Sobhraj’s first murder was that of a young American woman whose body was found on a Pattaya beach in a bikini, in 1975.

evil killer

“He was cultured, courteous,” said Nadine Gires, who befriended Sobhraj when she moved into his Bangkok building that year.

But he soon grew fearful of his neighbor, who disguised himself as a gem dealer to lure money-strapped travelers before drugging, robbing, and killing them.

“Many people were getting sick at home,” Gires said last year. “He was not just a con man, a seducer, a tourist thief, but an evil murderer“, he continued.

Sobhraj, of Indian and Vietnamese origin, ended up linked to more than 20 murders. His victims were strangled, beaten or burned and he often used the passports of his male victims to travel to their next destination.

Sobhraj’s nickname, ‘the Serpent’, came from his ability to assume other identities to evade justice. It became the title of a hit series made by the BBC and Netflix that was based on his life.

Life imprisonment

He was arrested in India in 1976 after a French tourist was poisoned to death in a Delhi hotel, and was sentenced to 12 years for murder.

Ultimately ‘the Serpent’ spent 21 years behind bars, with a brief interval in 1986 when he escaped from jail and was recaptured in the Indian coastal state of Goa.

Released in 1997, Sobhraj retreated to Paris but resurfaced in 2003 in Nepal, where he was spotted in Kathmandu’s tourist district and arrested.

A court handed him a life sentence the following year for killing American tourist Connie Jo Bronzich in 1975.

A decade later he was also found guilty of killing Bronzich’s fellow Canadian.

In prison in 2008, ‘the Snake’ married Nihita Biswas, who is 44 years his junior and the daughter of his Nepalese lawyer, in a secret ceremony held in prison.

Building on the popularity of the wedding, Biswas starred in India’s hugely popular version of the TV show Big Brother in 2011.

‘The Snake’ has at least one daughter from a previous relationship who lives in France.

They order the release of the serial killer ‘The Serpent’, of which they made a series on Netflix