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Buddhist temples burglarized in at least 2 states

Authorities in both Texas and Nashville are investigating recent incidents of theft at numerous Buddhist temples.

Members of the Buddhist community are expressing alarm and calling for an FBI investigation, reports NBC in Dallas-Ft. Worth.

Authorities in White Settlement outside Ft. Worth are working with both local communities and several other states that report similar burglaries.

Fox 4 reports that police in Ft. Worth and Irving are investigating break-ins in their area as well.

Investigators told NBC DFW a crime ring may be faking interest in prayer and distracting monks to steal money.

“I feel sad — you should come here to pray, to be nice to the people,” said member Sulee Adams.

KXAN reports a temple in Austin, TX has also been hit.

“We [are] really scared,” said a member of the temple who did not want to be identified. “We just have security cameras. We do not have a way to protect us again through force and maybe violence.”

In Nashville, TN, police are asking for the public’s help to identify five people who attacked a Buddhist monk in South Nashville, according to WKRN. That attack occurred Sunday at the Wat Lao Buddhist Temple on Old Hickory Boulevard.

The suspects in that case are a man and four women, one who was holding a child.

“They’ve always been very good neighbors, peaceful,” said Charles Pickneywho lives across the street from the temple. “It’s kind of like a little campground where people can come on Saturday night and kind of enjoy being with their friends from their temple and all, but never any problems.”

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