Abbot of Ohio Buddhist Temple May Be Heir to Cambodian Throne

October 20, 2002

Source: The Columbus Dispatch

On October 20, 2002 The Columbus Dispatch reported on "Lim Buntheoun. Critics say that instead of fostering the harmony typical of temple life, this man of charisma and mystery has sown seeds of discord in the Cambodian community, alienating temple members by his actions and his refusal to quell speculation that he is heir to Cambodia's throne. Questions about his identity, his quest for more than $9 million to build a new temple in Madison County and his obsession with secrecy have sparked a debate among Cambodians from coast to coast. Controversy over whether Lim is Crown Prince Norodom Naradipo or a con man has even penetrated the ranks of the royal family. The ailing King Norodom Sihanouk issued a statement last month from his hospital bed in Beijing saying that, as far as he is concerned, his son Naradipo was among several million murdered by Khmer Rouge communists in 1975. Yet Sihanouk's eldest son, Prince Nordom Yuvaneath, who lives in Connecticut and met Lim there in February, acknowledged later that he told the monk he should go to Cambodia to allow 'father' -- Sihanouk -- to decide who he is. And another prince, Sisowath Suriyavong, flew to Columbus last month from Paris and told The Dispatch that he's convinced the monk is his cousin."