Pair held over monk’s death

Nonthaburi: Two Myanmar men have been detained in connection with the murder of the abbot of Wat Sam Ngam temple in Bang Bua Thong on Saturday night, police said yesterday.

Aung Kin Yu, 25, and Aung Kai Mea, 26, were arrested at a bus stop in front of Rangsit Market in Pathum Thani while the other suspect, Simon Mea, is still at large, police said.

The suspects were allowed to stay at the temple two months ago and they became the prime suspects after Phra Khru Wisut Thirayan, the 47-year-old abbot, was found stabbed to death in his living quarters late Saturday night.

Police say Aung Kin Yu told them they only wanted to rob the monk but he resisted which prompted him to stab the monk. Yu said he was in need of money to send back home to Myanmar. The other two suspects were waiting outside when he entered the monk’s living quarters.

After attacking the monk, Yu and Aung Kai Mea fled and hid at a petrol station, while Simon Mea fled alone, said Yu.

Yu said he threw his blood-soaked knife away in a bush about two kilometres from the temple. Phra Khru Wisut Thirayan was found with more than 10 stab wounds on his body. The abbot died from severe blood loss moments before an ambulance reached the temple, said Pol Lt Col Boonlert Arkhomwatthana, the case’s lead investigator.

Deputy abbot, Phra Sombat, told police he saw the abbot retire to his room about 10pm. Some time after, Phra Khru Wisut’s aide, identified only as Piak, told Phra Sombat the abbot had fallen down.

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