Police arrested an abbot following a sting operation for allegedly selling an illegal gun in Ubon Ratchathani province on Sunday.
The abbot, Phra Somsak Areepak, who had been in monkhood for 11 years, was caught allegedly selling a gun for Bt12,000 to reseller Narithirun Chaiyapatnitiphokin. The alleged illegal activities were exposed in a sting operation. An undercover agent reportedly approached Narithinrun with an offer to buy the gun for Bt16,000. Phra Somsak and Narithinrun were nabbed at the latter’s house.
Following the arrest, Narithirun reportedly confessed that he had been selling arms. He said he had ordered guns via Phra Somsak. Phra Somsak, who claimed to be the abbot of a temple in the Lue Amnat district of Amnat Charoen province, said he had made online purchases of the guns. “I’ve sold two other guns to young men before for a profit of Bt2,000 each. I loved guns from a young age,” Phra Somsak said. Police said Phra Somsak would be defrocked. Both the former monk and Narithirun will be charged with having a gun and ammunition without permission and with an intention to sell.