Home of former Buddhism Office director searched after suspected of graft


Bangkok – Police and Anti-Money Laundering Office (AMLO) agents have jointly conducted a search of a mansion owned by a former director of the National Office Buddhism after receiving a tip off that the home may contain assets acquired with money corruptly gained.

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Agents on Thursday searched the home of Pattarawan Benjawattananan, the wife of Nopparat Benjawattanan, a former director of the National Office of Buddhism and a suspect in the temple funds corruption case.

Pol Maj Gen Romsit Wiriyasan told reporters that the home was purchased in 2016 for 49 million baht during Nopparat’s time in office and was originally under his name. He indicated it is very likely that the home was purchased using ill-gotten gains from 12 state temples.

The search turned up 2 large safes that have been taken in for further investigation alongside special decorations bestowed upon Nopparat and important documents. Police noted reports that a truck had earlier removed some amount of assets from the home.