gavesako wrote:We should bear in mind that there are about 300 thousand monks in Thailand (more or less, it fluctuates a lot during the Vassa due to temporary ordinations). Many of them will not stay long-term in the robes, they might just be doing a short stint as part of family tradition or for other reasons. Some might have ordained simply 'in search of a livelihood' without any spiritual aspirations whatsoever. Remember that there is hardly any social security network in Thailand, so older men without family support often become monks (and are notoriously hard to train). Naturally, without proper training, which is hard to come by in most monasteries these days, they will carry their old habits and defilements with them into the monk's life and will simply try get away with them as much as they can. So all kinds of misconduct by monks is reported daily in Thai media.
However, in a case such as this one involving a well-known popular monk, it becomes obvious that the whole structure of the Thai Sangha is unable to cope with the challenges and that the administrative structure (which has hardly changed for the last 100 years) needs a major overhaul. These are big topics and they are being discussed by Thai academics, but there is little political will (yes, it is a question of politics) to bring about a radical change. In the past, it was the king such as Rama VI who could do so, but nowadays various other parties are involved as well and the Thai Sangha is divided into factions who might be trying to get more influence (such as Dhammakaya).
Many people, including the Police, knew that this man (let´s not call him a monk anymore) was having sex with a minor and making misuse of money, but nobody did ever do anything. Even when it started to be uncovered, some high-rank monks and important lay-followers were protecting him and threating the whistle-blowers.
We have to thank whistle-blowing and pressure through Social Media. Otherwise it would have never been uncovered.