Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Gambling Monks Arrested

Photo Courtesy of Thairath

NONGKAI – Monks in Nongkai gathered for a session of gambling on the balcony of the temple. People passing by couldn’t stand the sight of it and reported them to the police for being disgraceful and irreverent to Buddhism. The 15 gambling monks dispersed in all directions like a nest of ants being stepped on; police only managed to take four of them into custody.

The monks had placed bets on coin spinning and coin flipping games for either heads or tails. They played right next to a road where everybody could see and immediately dispersed at the sight of police. Four of the monks were captured and 400 baht seized.

Surasak, the monk who had initiated the session confessed to inviting several monks and civilians from around the temple to join in a game of coin spinning. They had been playing three to five times a week. Surasak was the banker hand, betting from 5 – 10 baht each turn. The gambling turnover was around 500 – 1000 baht each time.

The police forced the monks to relinquish their monk status and change into normal clothes. They were relocated from the temple into jail cells.

Writer: Adrian Tse & Chet Chetchotisak

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