Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

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Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Anagarika » Fri Oct 04, 2013 2:34 am

Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault
September 30, 2013|Chicago Tribune Staff report

A Buddhist monk has been sentenced to 15 years in prison after pleading guilty to sexually assaulting and impregnating a teenage girl at a west suburban Buddhist temple, officials said.

Camnong Boa-Ubol, 62, pled guilty to one count of aggravated criminal sexual assault for assaulting the girl several times at Wat Dhammaram temple in unincorporated Stickney Township near Bridgeview, starting in 1998 when she was 14 years old and lasting for about two years, according to a release from the Cook County state's attorney's office and news reports from the time of Boa-Ubol's arrest.

The teen, who gave birth to the child in early 2000, did not initially report the assaults because she was afraid of Boa-Ubol, who had threatened to harm her and her family, the release said. She filed a lawsuit against Boa-Ubol in 2010 but to maintain her child's privacy, did not want to pursue criminal charges.

A 2010 DNA test, conducted after her lawsuit was filed, had determined the probability that Boa-Ubol fathered the child was 99.9999997 percent, records show.

After the Chicago Tribune wrote of the woman's lawsuit in a 2011 story about abuse allegations against several monks, a victims rights group persuaded her to seek criminal action against Boa-Ubol. Last July, Boa-Ubol, who had left the Chicago area several years ago, was returned here and charged, officials said.

Boa-Ubol had been arrested on a Cook County warrant in May 2012 in Anchorage, Alaska, where he worked as a restaurant dishwasher, and had fought efforts to return him to the Chicago area. A governor's warrant eventually was issued by the office of Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, and Alaska officials approved his return in July 2012, according to the Cook County Sheriff's Office.

Cook County Judge Colleen Hyland impose the sentence Friday at the Bridgeview Branch Courthouse.

___________________________________

Two of the main Chicago area Wats have had significant problems in recent years. The story above was significant as the Wat sent the offender back to Thailand and then seemingly conspired to allow him to migrate back to California, where he could reoffend. One of the other major Wats here was embroiled in litigation over allegations of sexual abuse of a disabled visitor to the Wat, as well as a lawsuit over financial improprieties.

My main point in this is that Theravada must have a zero tolerance policy for sexual abuse and any other violations of Vinaya related to sexual and financial crimes. These Thai Wats conspired to conceal these crimes. and I am frankly glad that they finally caught Boa-Ubol and jailed him. In my view, Boa-Ubol was never a Bhikkhu. but a predator in robes. Theravada needs none of this kind of behavior, and should never tolerate it.
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Matteo1972 » Fri Oct 04, 2013 2:56 am

I do not know if my point is relevant or not.
Unfortunately, I have heard that there are many of such stories within the Catholic Church.
And many Cardinals and Bishops have been accused to conceal the wrongdoings.
This is really unfortunate
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Anagarika » Fri Oct 04, 2013 3:07 am

The point may be, Matteo, that Theravada is not immune from the crimes that have afflicted the Catholic church, and other churches. Corrupt men will act in corrupt ways, and there will always be men who ordain defectively because they want to escape their families, or their families give them up due to poverty, or because they think they want a life without the responsibility of work. In some areas, there's not a lot of screening that takes place before ordination. A small percentage of ordained men in any tradition will have pathology, and commit criminal offenses. The question is always, to my mind, what is the response of the hierarchy when these offenses occur? In the case of the Chicago Wat, the response was very much like your example, where the abbot allegedly participated in a conspiracy to hide this criminal in Thailand and then allow him to migrate back out of Thailand into another Wat in the US, where he could reoffend.
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Ben » Fri Oct 04, 2013 3:23 am

BuddhaSoup wrote:My main point in this is that Theravada must have a zero tolerance policy for sexual abuse and any other violations of Vinaya related to sexual and financial crimes. These Thai Wats conspired to conceal these crimes. and I am frankly glad that they finally caught Boa-Ubol and jailed him. In my view, Boa-Ubol was never a Bhikkhu. but a predator in robes. Theravada needs none of this kind of behavior, and should never tolerate it.


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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Kusala » Fri Oct 04, 2013 4:50 am

BuddhaSoup wrote:Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault
September 30, 2013|Chicago Tribune Staff report

A Buddhist monk has been sentenced to 15 years in prison after pleading guilty to sexually assaulting and impregnating a teenage girl at a west suburban Buddhist temple, officials said.

Camnong Boa-Ubol, 62, pled guilty to one count of aggravated criminal sexual assault for assaulting the girl several times at Wat Dhammaram temple in unincorporated Stickney Township near Bridgeview, starting in 1998 when she was 14 years old and lasting for about two years, according to a release from the Cook County state's attorney's office and news reports from the time of Boa-Ubol's arrest.

The teen, who gave birth to the child in early 2000, did not initially report the assaults because she was afraid of Boa-Ubol, who had threatened to harm her and her family, the release said. She filed a lawsuit against Boa-Ubol in 2010 but to maintain her child's privacy, did not want to pursue criminal charges.

A 2010 DNA test, conducted after her lawsuit was filed, had determined the probability that Boa-Ubol fathered the child was 99.9999997 percent, records show.

After the Chicago Tribune wrote of the woman's lawsuit in a 2011 story about abuse allegations against several monks, a victims rights group persuaded her to seek criminal action against Boa-Ubol. Last July, Boa-Ubol, who had left the Chicago area several years ago, was returned here and charged, officials said.

Boa-Ubol had been arrested on a Cook County warrant in May 2012 in Anchorage, Alaska, where he worked as a restaurant dishwasher, and had fought efforts to return him to the Chicago area. A governor's warrant eventually was issued by the office of Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, and Alaska officials approved his return in July 2012, according to the Cook County Sheriff's Office.

Cook County Judge Colleen Hyland impose the sentence Friday at the Bridgeview Branch Courthouse.

___________________________________

Two of the main Chicago area Wats have had significant problems in recent years. The story above was significant as the Wat sent the offender back to Thailand and then seemingly conspired to allow him to migrate back to California, where he could reoffend. One of the other major Wats here was embroiled in litigation over allegations of sexual abuse of a disabled visitor to the Wat, as well as a lawsuit over financial improprieties.

My main point in this is that Theravada must have a zero tolerance policy for sexual abuse and any other violations of Vinaya related to sexual and financial crimes. These Thai Wats conspired to conceal these crimes. and I am frankly glad that they finally caught Boa-Ubol and jailed him. In my view, Boa-Ubol was never a Bhikkhu. but a predator in robes. Theravada needs none of this kind of behavior, and should never tolerate it.


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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Fri Oct 04, 2013 5:05 am

Covering up such abuse is the main reason why it continues.
BBC News - Sri Lanka's hidden scourge of religious child abuse

That case was covered up by the parents of the girl who only came forward to report it after her father's death.

Wat Dhammarama in Chicago has some odd traditions. Is it common to hold beauty pageants in Buddhist temples?
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby appicchato » Fri Oct 04, 2013 5:16 am

Is it common to hold beauty pageants in Buddhist temples?


Semantics aside, in Thailand it is not uncommon... :popcorn:
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Mr Man » Fri Oct 04, 2013 6:35 am

appicchato wrote:
Is it common to hold beauty pageants in Buddhist temples?


Semantics aside, in Thailand it is not uncommon... :popcorn:


They hold a "Miss Songkran" at Wat Buddhapadipa in London.
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Still Searching » Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:49 am

Many religious people perform such cruel acts, it can be anyone, a rabbi, nun, priest, monk, anybody. It's all about self-control.

They might be mentally unwell or angry or just is greedy and can't control his libido.

I am not ready for a monastery life but I'm training, I have managed to ignore all cravings for lust. It wasn't easy though.

Being in a sex-restricted area can make someone mentally unwell and they end up performing the act.

It's mainly self-control. What he did was terrible and I sympathize with the girl, if anyone wants to curse - I'll understand, I just think that some religious people in places like temples with low self-control can go crazy. Most men (not all) get easily aroused because they're suppose to mate at some stage. Refusing or passing off sex can be difficult.

It's shocking hearing this, it's rare hearing that a monk did this. Probably meditation helps monks control their awkward sensations.

It could be possible that he was abused too and became mentally unwell and react the memories. It's happened before.

Anyway, metta to the girl and her family.
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:56 am

    ex-Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Feathers » Fri Oct 04, 2013 1:05 pm

I'd like to comment on the reactions here: THANK YOU! Thanks for recognising that not all monks, nuns and lay Buddhists are perfect. And thanks for taking the stance that this was wrong, that the guy should be kicked out, that the Wat involved needs to take a look at itself.

One of the things that pretty much permanently put me off visiting a certain Zen forum was their response to revelations of long running abuse by a zen monk - defensiveness, and attempts to use Buddhism and Buddhist principles in a way that sounded a lot like saying the victims should never have spoken out.
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby chownah » Fri Oct 04, 2013 2:52 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
    ex-Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Ex-Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault committed while still a monk and convicted after he was disrobed by Buddhist authorities?
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Hickersonia » Fri Oct 04, 2013 3:03 pm

Mr Man wrote:
appicchato wrote:
Is it common to hold beauty pageants in Buddhist temples?


Semantics aside, in Thailand it is not uncommon... :popcorn:


They hold a "Miss Songkran" at Wat Buddhapadipa in London.

This is just silly... parade a bunch of young women wearing flashy dresses around in a place where practitioners of strict celibacy are dwelling...
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Still Searching » Fri Oct 04, 2013 4:25 pm

Hickersonia wrote:This is just silly... parade a bunch of young women wearing flashy dresses around in a place where practitioners of strict celibacy are dwelling...


That's why I said being in sex-restricted area can cause this problem. Again, it's about self-control. Before I was part of DW and took interest in Buddhism, I had a very high drive (sounds grose to say, I know! I'm just using an example). After studying and training, I lost interest in any sexual activity.

The monastery should of checked his health records. He could've suffered mental health issues or he may had been abused himself and reinacting the memories. I'm not taking his side, I just think that there could be a lot reasons why he done what he did. Illnesses such as schizophrenia or bi-polar can make people do things that are very cruel and show no remorse.

I have a friend who's schizophrenic, who can be jerk to me and throw tantrums and suddenly his mood would change and he'd be all bubbly and sweet.

There was a case in America about a young girl who'd torture animals and her little brother and she'd act sexual towards adult men. She was adopted by a Christian family, normally a Christian family would have left her on the streets for what she did but they didn't give up on her, they got a Dr who deals with childs' cases, it turned out she was sexually abused by her own biological father. Even her older sister who works as a stripper and a prostitute told the foster parents how she once had to pull her drunk father off her. He violated her when she was just a small baby. Her name was Beth something. There was a movie made for her.

Who knows, the monk could be like that too but I'm not saying he was right in what he was doing and I say that as a victim of rape & abuse myself.
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby chownah » Fri Oct 04, 2013 4:47 pm

Hickersonia wrote:
appicchato wrote:
Is it common to hold beauty pageants in Buddhist temples?


Semantics aside, in Thailand it is not uncommon... :popcorn:


This is just silly... parade a bunch of young women wearing flashy dresses around in a place where practitioners of strict celibacy are dwelling...

You have to understand (actually you don't have to) that in Thai culture the temple is a civic centre as well as a religious center. In my village just about all community get togethers happen at the temple grounds which means that although some westerners might think that some of what goes on is inappropriate it should also be realized that it does tend to keep some activities from getting too far out of hand which is a blessing for the community.
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby Benjamin » Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:10 am

chownah wrote:
You have to understand (actually you don't have to) that in Thai culture the temple is a civic centre as well as a religious center. In my village just about all community get togethers happen at the temple grounds which means that although some westerners might think that some of what goes on is inappropriate it should also be realized that it does tend to keep some activities from getting too far out of hand which is a blessing for the community.
chownah



That makes a lot of sense, for Thai culture anyway. I'd hesitate to say the same about Buddhist temples in the United States, though. Maybe some Christian Churches that hold a lot of community activities would be the closest parallel over here.
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby lyndon taylor » Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:42 am

We have Cambodian men and women dancing at the local temple on holidays, they even call them parties, but the clothing is certainly quite conservative by western standards(or lack thereof) hardly on ankle or cleavage in sight, so you may be getting the wrong idea, plenty of really flashy complicated printed dresses and tops(traditional) if that gets your juices flowing, OK better off not to go there.....
18 years ago I made one of the most important decisions of my life and entered a local Cambodian Buddhist Temple as a temple boy and, for only 3 weeks, an actual Therevada Buddhist monk. I am not a scholar, great meditator, or authority on Buddhism, but Buddhism is something I love from the Bottom of my heart. It has taught me sobriety, morality, peace, and very importantly that my suffering is optional, and doesn't have to run my life. I hope to give back what little I can to the Buddhist community that has so generously given me so much, sincerely former monk John
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Oct 06, 2013 3:18 am

chownah wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
    ex-Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Ex-Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault committed while still a monk and convicted after he was disrobed by Buddhist authorities?
chownah
The man ceased being a bhikkhu once the sex act was initiated. The rest is naught more than formality.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby chownah » Sun Oct 06, 2013 4:02 am

Benjamin wrote:
chownah wrote:
You have to understand (actually you don't have to) that in Thai culture the temple is a civic centre as well as a religious center. In my village just about all community get togethers happen at the temple grounds which means that although some westerners might think that some of what goes on is inappropriate it should also be realized that it does tend to keep some activities from getting too far out of hand which is a blessing for the community.
chownah



That makes a lot of sense, for Thai culture anyway. I'd hesitate to say the same about Buddhist temples in the United States, though. Maybe some Christian Churches that hold a lot of community activities would be the closest parallel over here.

I think that the temple on question is a Thai style temple in the US and probably serves the same function as a civic center for the local Thai expats so they are just doing the same stuff as what happens in Thailand.....which is what they want.....it is a hardship for most Thai people to be away from Thailand and Thai culture I think.
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Re: Buddhist monk gets 15 years for sexual assault

Postby mikenz66 » Sun Oct 06, 2013 5:25 am

chownah wrote:I think that the temple on question is a Thai style temple in the US and probably serves the same function as a civic center for the local Thai expats so they are just doing the same stuff as what happens in Thailand.....which is what they want.....it is a hardship for most Thai people to be away from Thailand and Thai culture I think.
chownah

This is true, I think. Our local Thai Wat (in New Zealand) certainly serves as a social centre (as well as serving important Dhamma purposes). There are Thai language and culture (music, dancing, etc) lessons for children and a few big gatherings each year. Songkran and Katina (which is usually coupled with Loy Kratong) are the biggest, with Thai musical performances ranging from traditional to modern. Occasionally I've been roped into judging the Miss Songkran...

:anjali:
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