Five fake monks in Kandal were charged with fraud and detained yesterday after they reportedly harassed locals for donations in the province’s Takhmao town, according to police.
Soem Buth Bandith, Takhmao town police chief, said yesterday that villagers complained to police about the fake monks passing from house to house ordering locals to give them money.
“At 10am on Tuesday, five monks walked to the villagers’ houses to ask for food and money, but then ordered the villagers to give them 40,000 riel [about $10] to buy more monk materials,” he said.
“At the time, the villagers wondered about this and suspected they were [not real], because monks never order normal people to give money like that.”
The five monks were then sent for questioning at a nearby pagoda, said Buth Bandith.
“After we questioned them, we found they were fake monks who cheat money from villagers,” he said.
“The villagers said they saw this group of fake monks at their village two times already, but the monks said it was their first time there.”
Buth Bandith said that provincial religious officials were ordered to defrock the monks, who were sent to Kandal Provincial Court yesterday.
One of the five men was from Prey Veng province while the other four are from Tboung Khmum.