Woman who was given the longest prison sentence in history only ended up serving eight years of it

Dominic Smithers

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Woman who was given the longest prison sentence in history only ended up serving eight years of it

Featured Image Credit: kienthuc.net.vn/Chris Willson/Alamy

A Thai woman was once handed the longest prison sentence ever, but only ended up serving a fraction of it.

In the 1960s, Chamoy Thipyaso set up something called a 'chit fund', which is a savings scheme that is often used in India.

In the past, these kinds of funds have been vital in helping finance developments, particularly in the state of Kerala.

However, Thipyaso's fund, which was called the Mae Chamoy Fund, was set up to appear like an oil share, offering those who invested their money high returns.

Because of her connections to the Royal Thai Air Force, the dodgy fund appeared to be legit, with thousands of people signing up to it.

She even managed to convince members of the royal household and military figures to invest.

But in the 1980s, it was uncovered that Thipyaso had stolen hundreds of millions of dollars from her clients.

Chamoy Thipyaso was handed the longest sentence on the world.
Chamoy Thipyaso was handed the longest sentence on the world.

Overall, it's estimated she defrauded over 16,000 people out of somewhere between $200 million and $301 million.

The fund was eventually wound up and Thipyaso was arrested.

In 1989, after going on trial, which only went ahead once the losses of the victims were recovered, Thipyaso was sentenced to 141,078 years in prison, making it the longest sentence ever of anyone in the world.

But why did she only serve just eight years for her crimes?

Well, Thai law only allowed for those convicted of fraud at the time to serve a maximum of 20 years behind bars.

In the end, though, Thipyaso was released after less than a decade.

One of the men responsible for the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing is behind bars with the longest prison sentence in the world after assisting in the killing of more than 160 people.

The tragic attack took place on the morning of 19 April, 1995, when former solider Timothy McVeigh parked a rented truck in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City and ignited a timed fuse attached to a bomb.

Terry Nichols was found to have helped Timothy McVeigh build the bomb. Credit: REUTERS/Alamy
Terry Nichols was found to have helped Timothy McVeigh build the bomb. Credit: REUTERS/Alamy

McVeigh fled the scene in a getaway car and the bomb exploded at precisely 9:02am local time, causing damage to more than 300 buildings and killing 168 people, including 19 children.

The FBI was able to link the van to McVeigh, and learned a friend of his named Terry Nichols had helped him construct the bomb.

Just 90 minutes after the bomb went off, McVeigh was pulled over by a State Trooper for having a missing license plate and was found to be carrying a concealed weapon. He was arrested, meaning he was already in jail when he was linked to the bombing the following day. Nichols then surrendered to police one day later.

A jury returned a verdict of guilty on all charges, and Nichols was handed a sentence of 160 consecutive life sentences without the possibility of parole.

It's recorded as the longest sentence in the world, followed by Michael J. Devlin, who received 74 life sentences plus 2,020 years for kidnapping and attempted murder, among other crimes.

Topics: News, True crime, Crime, World News, Police

Dominic Smithers
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