Ex-monk acquitted of abusing girls

Ex-monk acquitted of abusing girls

Then Phra Khru Kitti Phacharakhun, the abbot of Wat Lat Khae temple and also Chon Daen district’s monastic chief, arrives at the Crime Suppression Division on Nov 29, 2017 with his lawyer talks for questioning. (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)
Then Phra Khru Kitti Phacharakhun, the abbot of Wat Lat Khae temple and also Chon Daen district’s monastic chief, arrives at the Crime Suppression Division on Nov 29, 2017 with his lawyer talks for questioning. (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

The Criminal Court has acquitted a former monk of a charge of molesting three girls between the ages of 12-14 more than 10 years ago.

Somkiat Khanthong, the former Phra Kittipatcharakhun, faced the charge in connection with the alleged molestation which took place from April 1, 2005 to May 1, 2006 at his living quarters at Wat Lat Khae in Phetchabun where he served as abbot.

He was also accused of molestation at a resort in Koh Samui district of Surat Thani.

The court found the girls had given conflicting accounts during the investigation. Some had kept the assaults a secret for 10 years before deciding to report them to authorities, which was unusual, according to the court.

The court decided the witness accounts and evidence were not strong enough to convict the suspect and dropped the case.

The Central Criminal Court for Corruption and Misconduct Cases in April found him guilty on 13 counts related to the laundering of money embezzled from temples.



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