French serial killer Charles Sobraj has been granted freedom from a 20 year prison sentence in Nepal. The Frenchman is now flying back to his home country.

The serial killer had been the inspiration behind the Netflix limited series “The Serpent” which narrated the string of murders Sobraj had committed in South Asia during the 1970’s.

Sobraj was nicknamed “The Serpent” because of his reputation as an escape artist and ability to hide with the help of disguises.


Sobraj confessed in 2004 to the murder of Canadian and American backpackers. Nepal’s Supreme Court had ruled that the serial killer could be released on account of his ailing health due to heart failure, good behavior and having completed his life sentence. In Nepal, life sentences are only 20 years.

Sobraj had previously been held in a high-security prison in New Delhi for two decades on suspicion of robbery, but he had been deported without charges to France in 1997. However, the Frenchman had later re-emerged in Kathmandu in September 2003. The serial killer has also been believed to be responsible for at least 20 murders in countries like India, Afghanistan, Thailand, Turkey, Iran and Hong Kong during the 1970’s.