Daytime hotel night digging tunnels secretly stole a thousand-year-old pagoda relics

A group of tomb robbers in Shaanxi stole six thousand-year-old pagodas in five years, stealing Ayodhya pagodas, golden Buddha bones, relics, Shakyamuni nirvana statues and other cultural relics. (Synthesis of web screenshots)

Comprehensive media reports, at the end of 2017, Xianyang City police learned that the underground palace of the Kaiyuan Temple Pagoda in Binzhou City had been stolen. Recently, a total of 36 people from this tomb-robbing and selling cultural relics gang were arrested, and all the stolen relics were recovered.

Located in Shaanxi Xianyang Binzhou Kaiyuan Temple Tower, built in the Northern Song Dynasty Huang You five years (1053), is a national key cultural relics protection units. The main suspect, Wei Mou, was sentenced to prison in 2001 for an attempted excavation of the underground palace of the Kaiyuan Temple Tower.

After his release from prison in 2011, he relied on this notebook to plan a series of tomb raiding activities. In July and August 2011, Wei and his accomplices rented a room and set up store near the ancient pagoda of Fan Temple and stole the silver Ashoka pagoda, stone pagoda, glazed vase, suspected mani cakes, copper coins and other cultural relics from the underground palace by means of drilling holes.

In November 2013, Wei and others rented a private room to operate a steamed bun store near Tai Tower in Xanyang Xunyi, and then stole the ancient tower underground palace. In the excavation, Weimou just used a latitude and longitude meter to locate and guide the direction of the digging hole. A month later, the underground palace was opened and they stole the reclining Buddha statue, copper coffin (with silver coffin inside), glazed vase, small Buddha statue and other artifacts from the palace.

In April 2015, Wei and his accomplices in Binzhou Kaiyuan Temple near the ancient pagoda and opened a Sichuan restaurant, open the restaurant during the day, the night to dig the tunnel to steal antiquities. Every night at 10 o’clock, the purchaser will open the store door on Time, a group of people will access the hotel, with professional tools, from the hotel bathroom next to the underground to dig a hole in the ancient tower of the Kaiyuan Temple. At 4:00 a.m., the group left in a hurry, and the excavated soil was packed in plastic woven bags and carried away by car.

In October 2015, after more than half a year of digging, a depth of about 8 meters long more than 20 meters, straight through the Kaiyuan Temple Tower underground snake-like theft hole finally open. Wei and others stole 49 pieces of cultural relics from the tower, including sarcophagi, copper coffins, silver coffins, Gold coffins, hundreds of relics, bronze Bodhisattva statues and bronze mirrors. These cultural relics were packaged and sold by them for 5.8 million yuan, with the final price flipping to 23 million flowing to Zhejiang.

According to Wei’s account, they also dug tunnels into the underground palaces of the ancient pagodas of Xingping Qingfan Temple in Xianyang and Huichou Temple in Weinan Pucheng, but found that they had been stolen and emptied by others. In just five years, Wei and others stole a total of six ancient pagodas, profiting at least a hundred million yuan.