• Wednesday, April 17, 2024

HEADLINE STORY

Serial killer Charles Sobhraj plans to sue Netflix, BBC for ‘falsified’ TV series on him

The Serpent gives him a ‘completely falsified reputation’ with ‘30 per cent’ truth, his lawyer says.

French serial killer Charles Sobhraj (C) sits in an aircraft departing from Kathmandu to France, on December 23, 2022. (Photo by ATISH PATEL/AFP via Getty Images)

By: Chandrashekar Bhat

Charles Sobhraj, the French serial killer released from a Nepalese prison last week, seeks to sue Netflix and the BBC which co-produced a crime serial that chronicled his life.

The Serpent, an eight-part series that was aired on BBC One in early 2021, shows how he terrorised Asia in the 1970s with a string of murders targeting tourists.

Sobhraj’s lawyer Isabelle Coutant-Peyre claimed that with “30 per cent of truth”, The Serpent “gives him a completely falsified reputation”.

She said it was a “scandal” that he was presented as a serial killer, which was “completely false”. According to the French lawyer, he was “unjustly sentenced” in Nepal in “a fabricated case with false documents”.

Nepal’s top court granted his release on health grounds after he served nearly 20 years of his term for killing an American tourist and a Canadian in the Himalayan country in the 1970s. Sobhraj, who arrived in Paris on Saturday, claimed he was innocent of the killings in Nepal, alleging the courts and the judges in that country were “biased against” him.

Often posing as a gem trader, the French national would befriend his victims – mainly backpackers from Western – and then drug, rob and murder them.

Born in Ho Chi Minh City to an Indian father and a Vietnamese, Shobhraj was linked to more than 20 murders in Asia.

Nicknamed the “bikini killer”, he was arrested in India in 1976 and spent 21 years in jail before his release in 1997. He then went to Paris before going back to Nepal in 2003.

He, however, faces no charges in France where he may be placed under surveillance, The Times reported.

His daughter Usha who is believed to be in France said in 2016 that her father would spend time with her and write after his return from Nepal.

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