Date
28 May 2017
A secret passage leads to an upstairs secret room where Chi Ding (inset) hid Ru Zhi, according to investigators. Photos: Headline Daily, internet
A secret passage leads to an upstairs secret room where Chi Ding (inset) hid Ru Zhi, according to investigators. Photos: Headline Daily, internet

Monastery abbess hid alleged husband in secret room

A Buddhist abbess arrested Wednesday for sham marriage hid her alleged husband in a secret chamber in her monastery.

The revelation was among new details released by immigration authorities after Wednesday’s arrest of Chi Ding and her alleged second husband, Ru Zhi, during a dramatic raid on Hong Kong Ting Wai Monastery.  

Headline Daily is reporting that immigration officers found Ru in a secret room during a four-hour search of the promises.

The room was secured by a double lock.

Investigators said Ru had been hiding in the chamber for at least three weeks.

Photos seized as evidence show what appears to be a secret passage in the back of Chi’s quarters to Ru’s upstairs room.

The couple’s arrest came after Chi, who ran the monastery, was accused by a fellow director of mishandling donations and living an extravagant lifestyle that included keeping two German shepherds in an air-conditioned room.

Earlier, Wen Wei Po reported that Chi had been married to two monks who obtained their Hong Kong identity cards as a result of the marriage.

Chi and Ru were held by immigration authorities on suspicion of entering into a fake marriage with intent to obtain a Hong Kong identity card. 

They were released on bail and ordered to report back to the Immigration Department next Tuesday.

On Thursday, a sign on the main gate said the monastery is temporarily closed. It did not say when it will reopen. 

Chi claims to have been born in Jilin province and has used at least three different names, according to Apple Daily which cited unnamed sources.

She was married to a Hong Kong man, surnamed Sang, but divorced after seven years before she moved to Hong Kong in 2000 on a one-way permit.

Chi became a Buddhist nun in 2002 after working in a transport company, according to the report.

Sources said she had studied in Taiwan and practised Buddhism there.

Meanwhile, the Hong Kong Buddhist Association said Chi and others involved in the case are not members of the group or serve it in any role.

It said neither a Buddhist monk nor a nun is allowed to marry under the tenets of Buddhism.

Monastery abbess, monk arrested over sham marriage

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TL/JP/RA

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