crime

64-year-old man arrested for stealing ¥2,000 from offertory box at shrine

28 Comments

Police in Chichibu, Saitama Prefecture, have arrested a 64-year-old man on suspicion of stealing money from an offertory box at a shrine.

Police said the incident occurred at around 5:10 p.m. on June 25, Sankei Shimbun reported. Security camera footage showed the suspect, Shigetoshi Taira, placing his hands together and bowing, before using a thin rod-like object to withdraw cash from the box.

Police said Taira, who was arrested on Sunday, stole 2,000 yen from the box.

The shrine posted the surveillance camera footage on Twitter. On Sunday, police received a report of a man wearing similar clothes and carrying a rod like the suspect seen stealing the money. 

Police are questioning Taira about similar thefts that have occurred at other shrines in the area.

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28 Comments
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@Zaphod

We don't know this man situation.

Just stop bashing him.

Didn't your mom told you to be extra nice to people in need? It's called compassion.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

William Bjornso

How desperate this, possibly homeless,

Did you see the vieo? He looks well-groomed and healthy, and since the cops when to his house, he is hardly homeless.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

How desperate this, possibly homeless, 64 year old man must have been to take money from a shrine. Yeah, I know "All Humans who appear in news stories are scumbags" and should be described in words to that effect or condemned to the...maybe in this case, just the fifth circle of ... How hungry was the man? Do we have any information on the state of this man's reality at the time? What is this shrine's policy on helping those poorly equipped to live in our current pathological Human society? When faced with a fellow Human in extremis, is pilfering less than USD20 a crime or an obvious time to reflect on charity? And, what kind of mind could use the word "profit" in relation to a story like this? Just askin'...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

What a clever thief bowing for 2,000 yen. I guess he felt the offering was also for the taking.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

mmwkdw

Religion in Japan is a falsehood - it's merely another Commercialization attempt to Commoditize a Long standing historical ideology to the point of undermining it... Hello Kitty Meets Buddha!.

Strongly disagree! Afaic, religion in Japan is a shared tradition, offering cohesion in society, without being taken too seriously. Which is exactly the way it should be. No fanatical religionists going on holy war here (well, apart from Aum, but that was not mainstream).

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Robert Cikki

But to steal just 2,000 yen? How could that even be worth the trouble? 

There are several different videos of him pilfering from the box. Regular visitor! We don´t know how long he has been doing it, we also do not know how many other shrines he "visited". It is a good assumption it all added up to a nice profit over time.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I've heard of desperate people in Japan (often poor old men) stealing just to get caught, because getting arrested and jailed is an efficient way to get food and shelter.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Religion in Japan is a falsehood - it's merely another Commercialization attempt to Commoditize a Long standing historical ideology to the point of undermining it... Hello Kitty Meets Buddha!. This typifies that, instead of making a huge public fuss, why was there not a quiet (Japanese style "quiet"), handling of this situation - was the person really in need, or just a drunken Yakuza who sought to discredit his clan ? If he was in need, then why the big fuss ? Though shalt not steal from your wealthy fat monk ?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

A "DO NOT STEAL" sign translates in Japan to "Thank you for always not taking money out of the offertory box."

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Help the poor guy to survive instead of abusing him.

I will put the 2000yen back there if you give him food and shelter.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

2,000 yen? I wonder how long it took for him to get 2,000 coins out of the box!

If it was four 500Y coins, not long.

If it was two 1000Y bills, even less.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

2,000 yen? I wonder how long it took for him to get 2,000 coins out of the box!

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Police are questioning Taira about similar thefts that have occurred at other shrines in the area.

Yeah, blame this guy for the other crimes, too. We all know there's only one thief in Japan.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

This seems to be happening a lot recently. I wander what they use the money for. If they need the money for food, they should be forgiven. But if they use it to play Pachinko, throw them in jail.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Stealing is stealing.

The amount is a separate problem.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

OK, I could understand if it was more than tens of thousands of yen. I could understand if it was a politician stealing in the millions or billions.

But to steal just 2,000 yen? How could that even be worth the trouble? Wasn't it easier to steal coins from a vending machine instead of a sacred place? I really don't understand the thought processes of some people. Not even when they're drunk.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I'm friends with the kannushi of the shrine next to my house and noticed someone trying to break into their offertory box, so I went to their house, and they said, "There's little money in there. It's the box itself that is valuable."

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Bad karma heading his way from very vengeful Gods.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Reminds me of that video of 5 or so police officers ambushing an old guy who'd been stealing shrine money, including a bonus shot of a police officer slipping. It was comedy gold.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Now he becomes really really expensive for us. Only society shooting multiple times on own goal, but the problems behind still unsolved.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Wait until they figure out he never paid income tax.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

arrest the troublemaker!

"Police said Taira, who was arrested on Sunday..."

4 ( +5 / -1 )

So some shrines have security cameras monitoring the saisen box. Interesting, I've never noticed one before.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Must have been in real need?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Better him have it than those shrines, as if they need more money.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

arrest the troublemaker!

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Send baldy thief to Hell!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

ok

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

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