The local police then confirmed that Most Venerable Thich Nguyen Loc (59 years old, a monk at Quang An pagoda) and Nguyen Thi Bao Yen (19 years old, a Buddhist monastic at Quang An pagoda) were killed while Nguyen Thi Phuong (43 years old, Yen’s mother) was seriously injured at the pagoda.
After having collected sufficient evidence, the local police arrested Nguyen Thanh Tam (born in 1989, residing in Tan Nghia town, Ham Tan district, Binh Thuan province) on March 24 on charges of murder when he was hiding in Long Thanh My ward, District 9, Ho Chi Minh City.
At the police office, Tam admitted his offence. According to his testimony, Tam recognized that Thich Nguyen Tinh (a monk of Quang An pagoda) would leave the pagoda to Ho Chi Minh city on March 22, Tam intended to break into the sanctuary to steal money.
At 12 a.m., March 23, Tam snuck into Most Venerable Thich Nguyen Loc’s bedroom. Hearing the noise, Yen ran out from the next room. Seeing Yen, Tam attacked her with a stick to death. Tam then rushed into Most Venerable Thich Nguyen Loc’s bed and violently attacked him. When Yen’s mother ran over, she was also beaten by Tam. After that, the murderer stole VND 750 million, a sum of USD and AUD, and three mobile phones. He then fled to Ho Chi Minh City.
At Tam’s hideaway, the police found and seized over VND 250 million and 11 USD and AUD banknotes.