Press Release: Dr. Achan Chandaphone Chakkavarro) has been defrocked (disrobed)

UPDATED 10/1/2020
(PDF version)


The Lao Global Heritage Alliance (LGHA) announces that the Abbot’s Deputy Phonexay Mingsisouphanh (a.k.a. the Venerable Dr. Achan Chandaphone Chakkavarro) has been defrocked (disrobed) and can no longer be referred to as a Buddhist monk.

On Saturday, September 19, 2020, the LGHA, in collaboration with the DC, Maryland, and Virginia (DMV) Lao community and the Lao Buddhist community members performed a historical religious ceremony/hearing to defrock Phonexay Mingsisouphanh – the Deputy Abbot of Wat Lao Buddhavong (WLB) in Catlett, Virginia.

Based on the evidence presented at the hearing, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was found guilty of all four (4) counts as follows:

  • Count #1: Engaging in Sexual Misconduct.
  • Count #2: Lying and Deceiving.
  • Count #3: Stealing Something of Value.
  • Count #4: Causing Harm to Individuals and to the Community.

The purpose of this press release announcement is to provide an account of the nature and scope of all the alleged transgressions and wrongdoings of Phonexay Mingsisouphanh, a senior Abbott at Wat Lao Buddhavong for the last forty plus years. Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was provided the notice with the hearing date and location by certified mail, but he did not appear to answer the allegations.

The Lao Buddhist community have no choice but to defrock Phonexay Mingsisouphanh because his transgressions are too numerous to count, too awful, too horrific, and too appalling for the community to ignore. The dismissal of the once influential monk of WLB has entered the Lao Buddhist history books as the first monk and the highest-ranking monkhood to be castigated and dismissed by the community at large.
He is being formally notified of the community decision today by a letter.

Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was accused by the temple community of violating sacred precepts of the Vinaya. Based on the Vinaya, the body of monastic rules and traditions binding every ordained Buddhist monk.

The four transgressions resulting in penalty of automatic disrobing are:

  1. Engaging in sexual misconduct.
  2. Stealing something of value (e.g. cheating or deliberate avoiding payment of a tax).
  3. Intentionally bringing about the death of a human being.
  4. Lying to another person that one has attained a superior human state.

Guilty of First Vinaya: Engaged in Sexual Misconduct (Count #1)

According to the testimonies from several victims (from an interview and testimony in person), Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was accused and found guilty of violating the first cardinal precept of engaging in unlawful sexual misconduct with a minor and with other individuals for more than a decade.

Guilty of Second Vinaya: Stealing something of Value (Count #2)

Based upon written affidavit, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was accused and found guilty of violating the second cardinal precept of stealing.

Stealing is defined as “taking something of value without the consent of the owner”, which includes smuggling, cheating, or deliberately avoiding payment of a tax. As the appointed estate administrator for Kuba Chom Taengsap’s estate, he failed to distribute over $369,000 of the settlement benefits owed to Kuba Chom’s surviving family members according to affidavits received from them.  Additionally, he was sued by the state of Virginia for falsifying estate reports.  The allegations were sustained and clearly demonstrate he intentionally violated this
monastic rule.

Guilty of Lying, Causing Harms to Individuals and Community (Count #3 & #4)

Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was accused and found guilty of lying, causing harm to individuals, and harm

to community. He was accused and found guilty of continuing to exhibit immoral and unethical conduct unbecoming of a monk. The following accusations were sustained against Phonexay Mingsisouphanh as are briefly described below:

  • Lying to solicit donations in a deceptive manner and using the money collected for purposes not
    intended by the donors.
  • Concealing immoral activities from the community and members and ignoring the community’s appeals for transparency and fair elections.
  • Abusing power and authority by unilaterally banning 30 temple community members from the temple property (issuing no trespass orders which they could be arrested for if they visited the property),
    which has prevented  them from visiting their place of worship and from performing religious ceremonies, including not being able to visit their parents’ stupas.
  • Resorting to bullying tactics by engineering a campaign to silence individuals with knowledge of
    his nefarious activities with lawsuits against a resident monk and a community member, both cases
    were dismissed by a district court judge due to their frivolous nature.
  • Unlawfully evicting Kuba La, a monk from the temple which was his place of residence for over a decade. With the apparent consent of Phonexay Mingsisouphanh as a Deputy Abbott, the police were called to chase Kuba La out or face arrest. Kuba La was escorted out of Wat Lao Buddhavong by the police, arrested and spent one night in jail. This made Kuba La essentially homeless and he had to
    stay at the shelter.
  • Filling a civil lawsuit against seven members of the temple community which cause them severe emotional distress and financial loss.
  • Gathering administrative power by rewriting bylaws to eliminate the voting rights of the General Assembly and the ability to nominate members of the Board of Directors.
  • Unwilling to fulfill his responsibilities to meet with General Assembly and refusing to mediate conflicts.
  • Unfairly electing additional Board of Directors. In order to legitimize and justify his unilaterally adopted decisions, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh selected additional Directors and Officers (not by Fair Election)
    in April 2020. He displays a boundless contempt for the perspective and feelings of the faithful members
    of the Wat Lao Buddhavong.

Lastly, according to the judge sentencing against Count #4 (Causing Harm to Individuals and Harm to the Community), Phonexay Mingsisouphanh has committed one of the five “Anantarika-karma”, Sanghaphesa which is causing a schism within the Sangha (a division among Buddhist monks, a division between people, a division in the Buddhist community).

These five most heinous crimes – Anantarika-karma are:

  1. Matukhata (matricide): intentionally killing one’s mother.
  2. Pitukhata (patricide): intentionally killing one’s father.
  3. Arahantakhata: killing an Arhat (fully enlighten being or saint).
  4. Lohitubatha: injuring the body of a Buddha.
  5. Sanghaphesa: causing a schism within the Sangha (a division among Buddhist monks,
    a division between people, a division in the Buddhist community).

Phonexay Mingsisouphanh has alleged the Venerable Phra Achan Bounmy Kittithammavanno of having dementia and being unable to take care of himself. According to Dhamma teaching, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh has indirectly chased Venable Bounmy out of the country to seek refuge in Thailand.

Since then, many of the monk residents of Wat Lao Buddhavong have departed the temple one after another, including Kuba Onla and then other monks.  In Dhamma, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh’s actions have caused
a schism within the Sangha community, which is a crime under Anantarika-karma.

Phonexay Mingsisouphanh has committed the “ANANTARIKA-KAMMA”, which is a hideous crime, the heaviest and gravest wrongdoing in Buddhism. They are called “Anantarika” because the results immediately come to execution in the next life–that is, the perpetrator, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh has nowhere to go, with “hell

The Lao Global Heritage Alliance (LGHA) announces that the Abbot’s Deputy Phonexay Mingsisouphanh (a.k.a. the Venerable Dr. Achan Chandaphone Chakkavarro) has been defrocked (disrobed) and can no longer be referred to as a Buddhist monk.

On Saturday, September 19, 2020, the LGHA, in collaboration with the
DC, Maryland, and Virginia (DMV) Lao community and the Lao Buddhist community members performed a historical religious ceremony/hearing
to defrock Phonexay Mingsisouphanh – the Deputy Abbot of Wat Lao Buddhavong (WLB) in Catlett, Virginia.

Based on the evidence presented at the hearing, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was found guilty of all four (4) counts as follows:

  • Count #1: Engaging in Sexual Misconduct.
  • Count #2: Lying and Deceiving.
  • Count #3: Stealing Something of Value.
  • Count #4: Causing Harm to Individuals and to the Community.

The purpose of this press release announcement is to provide an account of the nature and scope of all the alleged transgressions and wrongdoings of Phonexay Mingsisouphanh, a senior Abbott at Wat Lao Buddhavong for the last forty plus years. Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was provided the notice with the hearing date and location by certified mail, but he did not appear to answer the allegations.

The Lao Buddhist community have no choice but to defrock Phonexay Mingsisouphanh because his transgressions are too numerous to count, too awful, too horrific, and too appalling for the community to ignore. The dismissal of the once influential monk of WLB has entered the Lao Buddhist history books as the first monk and the highest-ranking monkhood to be castigated and dismissed by the community at large.
He is being formally notified of the community decision today by a letter.

Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was accused by the temple community of violating sacred precepts of the Vinaya. Based on the Vinaya, the body of monastic rules and traditions binding every ordained Buddhist monk.

The four transgressions resulting in penalty of automatic disrobing are:

  1. Engaging in sexual misconduct.
  2. Stealing something of value (e.g. cheating or deliberate avoiding payment of a tax).
  3. Intentionally bringing about the death of a human being.
  4. Lying to another person that one has attained a superior human state.

Guilty of First Vinaya: Engaged in Sexual Misconduct (Count #1)

According to the testimonies from several victims (from an interview and testimony in person), Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was accused and found guilty of violating the first cardinal precept of engaging in unlawful sexual misconduct with a minor and with other individuals for more than a decade.

Guilty of Second Vinaya: Stealing something of Value (Count #2)

Based upon written affidavit, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was accused and found guilty of violating the second cardinal precept of stealing.

Stealing is defined as “taking something of value without the consent of the owner”, which includes smuggling, cheating, or deliberately avoiding payment of a tax. As the appointed estate administrator for Kuba Chom Taengsap’s estate, he failed to distribute over $369,000 of the settlement benefits owed to Kuba Chom’s surviving family members according to affidavits received from them.  Additionally, he was sued by the state of Virginia for falsifying estate reports.  The allegations were sustained and clearly demonstrate he intentionally violated this
monastic rule.

Guilty of Lying, Causing Harms to Individuals and Community (Count #3 & #4)

Phonexay Mingsisouphanh was accused and found guilty of lying, causing harm to individuals, and harm to community. He was accused and found guilty of continuing to exhibit immoral and unethical conduct unbecoming of a monk. The following accusations were sustained against Phonexay Mingsisouphanh as are briefly described below:

  • Lying to solicit donations in a deceptive manner and using the money collected for purposes not
    intended by the donors.
  • Concealing immoral activities from the community and members and ignoring the community’s appeals for transparency and fair elections.
  • Abusing power and authority by unilaterally banning 30 temple community members from the temple property (issuing no trespass orders which they could be arrested for if they visited the property),
    which has prevented  them from visiting their place of worship and from performing religious ceremonies, including not being able to visit their parents’ stupas.
  • Resorting to bullying tactics by engineering a campaign to silence individuals with knowledge of
    his nefarious activities with lawsuits against a resident monk and a community member, both cases
    were dismissed by a district court judge due to their frivolous nature.
  • Unlawfully evicting Kuba La, a monk from the temple which was his place of residence for over a decade. With the apparent consent of Phonexay Mingsisouphanh as a Deputy Abbott, the police were called to chase Kuba La out or face arrest. Kuba La was escorted out of Wat Lao Buddhavong by the police, arrested and spent one night in jail. This made Kuba La essentially homeless and he had to
    stay at the shelter.
  • Filling a civil lawsuit against seven members of the temple community which cause them severe emotional distress and financial loss.
  • Gathering administrative power by rewriting bylaws to eliminate the voting rights of the General Assembly and the ability to nominate members of the Board of Directors.
  • Unwilling to fulfill his responsibilities to meet with General Assembly and refusing to mediate conflicts.
  • Unfairly electing additional Board of Directors. In order to legitimize and justify his unilaterally adopted decisions, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh selected additional Directors and Officers (not by Fair Election) in April 2020. He displays a boundless contempt for the perspective and feelings of the faithful members
    of the Wat Lao Buddhavong.

Lastly, according to the judge sentencing against Count #4 (Causing Harm to Individuals and Harm to the Community), Phonexay Mingsisouphanh has committed one of the five “Anantarika-karma”, Sanghaphesa which is causing a schism within the Sangha (a division among Buddhist monks, a division between people, a division in the Buddhist community).

These five most heinous crimes – Anantarika-karma are:

  1. Matukhata (matricide): intentionally killing one’s mother.
  2. Pitukhata (patricide): intentionally killing one’s father.
  3. Arahantakhata: killing an Arhat (fully enlighten being or saint).
  4. Lohitubatha: injuring the body of a Buddha.
  5. Sanghaphesa: causing a schism within the Sangha (a division among Buddhist monks, a division between people, a division in the Buddhist community).

Phonexay Mingsisouphanh has alleged the Venerable Phra Achan Bounmy Kittithammavanno of having dementia and being unable to take care of himself. According to Dhamma teaching, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh has indirectly chased Venable Bounmy out of the country to seek refuge in Thailand.

Since then, many of the monk residents of Wat Lao Buddhavong have departed the temple one after another, including Kuba Onla and then other monks.  In Dhamma, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh’s actions have caused
a schism within the Sangha community, which is a crime under Anantarika-karma.

Phonexay Mingsisouphanh has committed the “ANANTARIKA-KAMMA”, which is a hideous crime, the heaviest and gravest wrongdoing in Buddhism. They are called “Anantarika” because the results immediately come to execution in the next life–that is, the perpetrator, Phonexay Mingsisouphanh has nowhere to go, with “hell” as his only destination. According to the last sentencing on Count #4, the Anantarika-Karma is a hideous sin that causes the sinner to be reborn in hell immediately after death. This is considered so heinous that even non-Buddhists must avoid it. According to Buddhism, committing such a crime would prevent a perpetrator such as Phonexay Mingsisouphanh from attaining “Nirvana”,
or ever going to heaven.

The Lao Buddhist community is no longer recognizing Phonexay Mingsisouphanh as a monk nor recognizes his Buddhist monk title the “Venerable Dr. Achan Chandaphone Chakkavarro.” Additionally, since only
the ordained monks should be allowed to reside at the temple, the Lao Buddhist community is currently demanding Phonexay Mingsisouphanh to be expelled from the Wat Lao Buddhavong temple immediately.


About LGHA

Our Vision: Lao Global Heritage Alliance ambitiously strive to preserve Lao Traditions, Culture, Heritage, and advocate Buddhism.

Our Mission: (1) Help Promote Lao Community Cohesiveness, (2) Help the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Activities in non-profit 501 (C)(3) Charitable Organization to include the Wat Lao Temple, and (3) Help Provide and Encourage the Transparency of Financial Management, Organizational Management, Board of Directors’ Elections in non-profit
501 (C)(3) Charitable Organization to include the Wat Lao Temple.

Contact Us: You can contact the LGHA team by email, mail, or phone.

Lao Global Heritage Alliance
P.O. Box 1783

4270 John Marr Drive #1783
Annandale, VA 22003-9998

Phone: (571) 261-6324

Email: info@lghalliance.org

Website: https://LGHAlliance.org

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