Dhammakaya temple asks protection from court

Dhammakaya temple today asked for protection of its former abbot, Phra Dhammachayo, from the Criminal Court, after learning that police will search the temple to arrest him.

The request for protection was sought by the temple's lawyer this morning.

Its lawyer told reporters at the Criminal Court that he was designated to lodge complaint and sought protection after rumour was spread that several thousands of police and officials from the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) will enter the temple today after they have been granted warrant from the court to search the temple for the former abbot.

The lawyer said the temple requested the Criminal Court to abort the search warrant.

It was not immediately known which court issued the search warrant for the DSI, the Pathum Thani Provincial Court or the Criminal Court.

At press time, there was no response yet from the court to the temple's request.

But the rumour did encourage more supporters to the temple today in what the temple spokesman said they arrive merely to practise Dhamma, and not to shield Phra Dhammachayo.

Up to 10,000 supporters were reported to have arrived and camp out at the temple's over 3,000 rai compound in Pathum Thani province, north of Bangkok.

Today the commissioner of the Royal Thai Police Pol Gen Chaktip Chaijinda has ordered all police commissioners to keep their mouths closed on the search warrant and the launch of the D-Day to make arrest.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)