Adapted from the Translation by T. W. Rhys Davids and Hermann Oldenberg
FIRST KHANDHAKA(THE FORMATION OF THE ORDER OF BHIKKHUS)
Chapter-42 : No Ordination for Jail Breakers.
1. At that time the Magadha king Seniya Bimbisara had issued the following decree: 'No one is to do any harm to those who are ordained among the Sakyaputtiya Samanas; well taught is their doctrine; let them lead a holy life for the sake of the complete extinction of suffering.'
Now at that time a certain person who had committed robbery was imprisoned in the jail. He broke out of the jail, ran away, and received the pabbajja ordination with the Bhikkhus.
2. The people who saw him, said: 'Here is the robber who has broken out of jail; come, let us bring him (before the authorities).'
But some people replied: 'Do not say so, Sirs. A decree has been issued by the Magadha king Seniya Bimbisara: 'No one is to do any harm to those who are ordained, &c.'
People were annoyed, murmured, and became angry, thinking: 'Indeed these Sakyaputtiya Samanas are secure from anything; it is not allowed to do any harm to them. How can they ordain a robber who has broken out of jail?'
They told this thing to the Lord Buddha.
'Let no robber, O Bhikkhus(Monks), who has broken out of jail, receive the pabbajja ordination. He who confers the pabbajja ordination (on such a person), is guilty of a dukkata offence.'