SC bars French lawyer from defending Charles Sobhraj

Kathmandu, May 6:

The Supreme Court today rejected a plea by French lawyer Isabelle Coutant Peyre to defend Charles Gurumukh Sobhraj during the court proceedings.

A division bench of Justices Min Bahadur Rayamajhi and Kalyan Shrestha rejected the French lawyer’s request, which was made during today’s hearing.

“The bench rejected her request saying that there is no such precedence here,” Raja Ram Dhakal, Sobhraj’s Nepali lawyer told this daily.

The bench, however, said a foreign lawyer could assist Nepali lawyers in any case.

Former Attorney General Badri Bahdur Karki, senior advocate Basanta Ram Bhandari and advocate Dhakal defended Sobhraj during today’s hearing on fake passport case.

Sobhraj’s counsel argued that the chargesheet against Sobhraj was silent on any

offense under the Act Relating to Foreigners-1958 and the related regulation, so the charge of fake passport against Sobhraj was improper. They also argued that

the apex court order to reopen the fake passport case against Sobhraj was baseless.

The lawyers claimed that there was no evidence to prove his presence in the country in 1975.