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Buddhist Priest Accused of Assaulting Junior High School Student

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A junior high school student is accusing the priest of a Buddhist temple in Hinohara Village, Tokyo of physical assault.The 15-year old boy had been staying at the temple in late October as part of a program intended for troubled youths, when he claims he was slapped and hit with a stick on a daily basis by the temple priest.

The program, which costs 7500 yen per day (about US$70), was advertised as a Buddhist “training experience” where troubled youths could take part in Buddhist monk style activities, such as chanting and training under a waterfall.

Since these allegations first broke other junior high school students have also come forward claiming that the priest beat them regularly. Although the priest had originally denied these allegations completely, at a press conference held on November 20 the priest changed his tune a bit. In regards to the original allegations made by the 15-year old junior high student, the priest admitted that he had hit him. However, he denied allegations that he had used excessive force. He explained that the  accuser’s parents had asked him to discipline the child “strictly” and that reasonable force was used when administering physical punishment.

This press conference came after video showing the priest hitting the student was released. Police are currently investigating the case.

Since this story first broke it has also come out that that other troubling activity seems to have been going on at the temple. Currently, the
temple is also being suspected of using troubled youths as a source of free labor. A video, which was secretly filmed, showing junior high school students sorting receipts at about 10 p.m. was also released. Furthermore, accusations that the temple was serving food prepared using expired ingredients are also being made. Video showing food with expiration dates up to a year old has also been released. The priest is denying any wrongdoing in these actions as well.

If you would like to see a CG recreation of the events descrivd in this story, check out the TomoNews Japan video below.

Source: Nippon News Network

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