New roundup of Jehovah's Witnesses in Moscow


OVD-Info, 26 August 2021


In Moscow, security agents conducted mass searches in homes of Jehovah's Witnesses. Three believers, Eduard Sviridov, Sean Paik, and Alexander Rumiantsev, were placed in a SIZO after questioning. (tr. by PDS, posted 26 August 2021)


Website of Main Investigation Department of R.S.K. for Moscow, 26 August 2021


The investigation department for the southwest administrative district of the Main Investigation Department of the Russian Investigative Committee [R.S.K.] for the city of Moscow has opened a criminal case on the grounds of the crime specified in part 1 of article 282.2 of the Criminal Code of the R.F. (arranging the activity of an extremist organization).


The basis for opening the criminal case was materials concerning the planning in Moscow of activity of the "Administrative Center of Jehovah's Witnesses in Russia," which was ruled by a decision of the Russian Supreme Court to be an extremist organization.


According to the account of the investigation, in the period between September 2017 and April 2020, a group of persons, who were aware that the decision of the Russian Supreme Court had taken legal effect, arranged on the territory of the city of Moscow the work of a local religious subdivision of the aforesaid organization: Jehovah's Witnesses in Moscow. Conspiratorial gatherings were conducted in several apartments, located in the southwest administrative district of the city of Moscow, where adherents studied religious literature and information contained in other sources of information promoting the teaching of the Jehovah's Witnesses, and they carried out other actions typical for the given association. In addition, the organizers conducted videoconferences on-line and they also encouraged and recruited new members among residents of the capital and other constituent elements of the R.F. for participation in the forbidden religious movement.


Investigators of the capital Investigative Committee, in cooperation with agents and with the armed support of the Russian Guard, conducted searches in places of residence of the organizers and members of the organization, during which they seized computer equipment, electronic devices, multiple copies of extremist literature, and other items and objects that have significance for the investigation of the criminal case.


At the present time, three organizers of the movement (born in 1964, 1971, and 1977) have been identified and arrested and they have been charged. In the near future, the investigation intends to petition a court for selection of measures of restriction for the subjects. The investigation of the criminal case is on-going. (tr. by PDS, posted 26 August 2021)

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