Serial killer Charles Sobhraj undergoes open heart surgery in Nepal

Charles Sobhraj
Charles Sobhraj

Kathmandu: Notorious serial killer Charles Sobhraj, a Frenchman of Indian and Vietnamese parentage who has been in Nepal's jail for years, on Monday underwent a five-hour open heart surgery and is yet to regain conciousness, a media report said today.

Sobhraj, 73, was admitted to the hospital after doctors diagnosed leakage in a valve.

According to a source at the hospital, Sobhraj was scheduled to undergo heart surgery tomorrow, but it was carried out today. He was hospitalised last Friday after he complained of severe chest pain.

His tricuspid valve has been repaired while his mitral valve has been replaced with an artificial one. He is yet to regain consciousness, Republica quoted doctors as saying. Sobhraj had recently fainted in the Central Jail, Sundhara, where he has been kept in confinement for the last 12 years.

Nicknamed "the Bikini Killer" and "the Serpent" due to his skill at deception and evasion, Sobharaj is serving a life-term in the Kathmandu jail since 2003 for the murder of US woman Connie Joe Bronzich in 1975. A life-term in Nepal means 20 years in jail.

Even if Sobharaj completes the jail term another case is pending in a district court of Nepal to convict him. He had been linked to multiple killings of backpackers.

Sobhraj spent 21 years in jail in India with a brief 22-day break in 1986 when he escaped Tihar Jail after drugging security guards, whom he had served sweets on the pretext of celebrating his birthday.

Sobhraj is believed to have killed 15 to 20 people in 1970s. Two of his victims were found wearing only bikinis. He befriended mostly Western tourists in Asia, later drugging and killing them mostly between 1972 and 1976.

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