Nepal

Lawyer and 'wife' of bikini-killer charged with contempt

Reuters

Nepal's Supreme Court in Kathmandu charged the lawyer of convicted murderer Charles Sobhraj and her daughter with contempt on Thursday, after the two women accused judges presiding over the Sobhraj trial of bias against him.

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Charles Sobhraj, a French citizen of Vietnamese and Indian parentage, has been linked to a string of killings across Asia in the 1970s, earning him the nickname "the bikini killer". He is currently serving a life sentence in Nepal for the murder of American backpacker Connie Joe Bronzich in 1975, a crime that he denies committing.

Shakuntala Thapa, Sobhraj’s lawyer, and Nihita Biswas, her daughter - who claims she was married to Sobhraj in a secret prison cell ceremony - stood before court on Wednesday and were subsequently detained overnight in prison.

Last week Supreme Court judge Ram Kumar Prasad Shaha rejected Sobhraj’s appeal, stating that although there was no direct evidence against him, the circumstantial evidence surrounding the case was sufficient to justify his conviction.

Reacting angrily to the news of the failed appeal, Thapa and Biswas spoke out against the verdict, telling journalists that two judges involved in the case were biased and had accepted bribes - comments which then lead to their arrests.

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