The president of the LDS Church's Thailand mission will face charges of defaming the Buddhist religion in court later this month, the public prosecutor's office said Wednesday.
Anan Eldredge, a Thai, also is accused of publishing a newspaper without permission, said an official at the prosecutor's office.Anan, who has denied the charges, is to appear in court on April 24. If convicted, Anan faces up to one year in prison or a fine of up to $200.
The article at issue appeared last year in "Rom Cion," a Thai-language church newsletter. Police say the article suggested that Buddhist monks normally don't understand the prayers they chant and that chanting prayers without knowing their meaning was foolish.
The majority of Thais are Buddhist, but Thais are free to practice other religions. Anan has said about 5,000 members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are in Thailand.