Elderly Thai monk ‘dies from stress’ after falling victim to scam

Photo via KhaoSod

An elderly Thai monk suffered several seizures and passed away shortly after being scammed out of 5,000 baht at his temple in Nonthaburi province in central Thailand.

Yesterday, 35 year old Preecha Saeng-on, an official from Wat Pak Nam temple in Nonthaburi province, informed the media that 91 year old Pra Chuen Seesuay – aka Luang Ta – suffered several seizures and ultimately “died from stress” shortly after falling victim to a scam.

CCTV footage captured yesterday morning pictures a man wearing a helmet riding a green motorbike riding into the grounds of Wat Pak Nam temple.

The assailant knocked on the door of Luang Ta’s quarters, who came outside. The pair can be seen exchanging money before the man rides off again.

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Luang Ta explained to the other monks that he was tricked. The man asked Luang Ta whether he could exchange some money, so he agreed.

The man handed Luang Ta a white envelope and the monk handed his wallet over. The scammer took 5,000 baht, but when Luang Ta looked in the white envelope, it was empty.

The elderly monk blamed himself, saying that he probably wasn’t careful enough. At 91 years old and blind in one eye, it’s obvious the scammer was preying on the vulnerable.

Luang Ta told Preecha that it was probably the same man who scammed him before. In October last year, Luang Ta filed a complaint at Mueang Nonthaburi Police Station when the same thing happened. That time, the scammer took 3,000 baht.

At 8.30am, Luang Ta started complaining of dizziness. At 8.46am, Luang Ta started having seizures and lost consciousness.

Monks gave Luang Ta CPR while waiting for the ambulance to arrive. However, Luang Ta was pronounced dead at the hospital yesterday morning.

Monks and lay Buddhists at the temple said they were “confident” that the cause of Luang Ta’s death was stress induced by being deceived.

Preecha said he decided to contact the media so that other temples are aware of this fraudster.

Hopefully, the police catch and prosecute this crook before he causes trouble at other temples, added Preecha.

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Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.

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