Feature documentary on the most prolific serial killer of the 20th century, Charles Sobhraj. It took me a week to convince Charles, who had only days before been arrested and jailed in Katmandu, to give me exclusive access to his story. It took me another week to negotiate with the entire jail administration to get us to shoot in the jail. Meanwhile Charles was psychologically manipulating me to trust him as the new best friend, a modus operandi he used on some estimated 400 of his victims. This doc was shot in India, Nepal, Australia, France and Thailand in 2002-2003.

Director/Producer/Writer: Jan Wellmann


For seven years Charles Sobhraj lived in Paris as a free man, with a French passport, with two wives and two daughters. On September 22, 2003, he was arrested in Katmandu, Nepal, by police who want to charge him with two murders committed twenty six years ago. Charles Sobhraj’ recent capture is opening up a Pandora’s Box of a man who has been variously labeled as the most evil man of the 20th century, a serial killer, a brilliant disguise artist, a modern Don Juan who uses women to achieve his goals, an escape artist able to break out of a dozen maximum security jails, an existential animal without morality, the ultimate liar and disguise artist of our time. Sobhraj has never been convicted of even one of the alleged fifty murders he was accused of in Thailand, India, Nepal and elsewhere – most of them young backpackers on the dope and Nirvana trail of the seventies.


Review by Variety