Temple driver steals donated goods

A driver working for the well-known Suan Kaew temple in Nonthaburi province has been arrested for stealing donated goods and selling them to a local second-hand trader.

Phra Payom Kallyano says stealing donated goods means stealing from temple and needy people.

Phra Payom Kallayano of Suan Kaew temple, who initiated a project asking people to donate reusable waste to the temple, contacted police after suspecting that one of their drivers was stealing donated goods.

Pol Maj Gen Thanayuth Wutcharasthamrong, superintendent of Nonthaburi police station said the police carried out surveillance of the driver, Chavalit Bamrungros, 66, and found he was failing to return directly to the temple after picking up donated goods from several collection points.

Mr Chavalit made detours to sell goods to a second-hand merchant at a local market. The police seized 19 pieces of clothing from the trader, identified as Jirawat Namsuk, 47, and around 100 more items from the driver.

Phra Payom said he has not lived at Suan Kaew for several years, so had been delegating the management of donations to the Suankaew Foundation to people working in the temple.  

He realised that someone had been stealing from the donations, and questioned workers at the temple, but no one admitted taking the items.

The temple’s abbot said the driver had not only stolen from the temple but also from the elderly, children and dogs, because the money generated from selling the donated items would have been spent on those needy groups.

The monk warned people in the second-hand business not to buy items that had been stolen from the foundation.

Mr Chavalit has been charged with stealing goods and Mr Jirawat with buying stolen goods.

Related search: Phra Payom Kallayano, Wat Suan Kaew, Suankaew Foundation, Nonthaburi

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