Case of Ignatov in Oryol

Case History

In December 2020, Dmitriy Ignatov’s house was searched in Oryol as part of the Piskarev case. In October 2021, the Investigative Committee opened a criminal case against 24-year-old Dmitriy. He was suspected of participating in the activities of an extremist organization. In January 2024, the case went to court. At least nine prosecution witnesses said they did not know Ignatov and could not report anything specific.

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    December 9, 2020 Search

    Senior Lieutenant of Justice I. A. Simonova, Investigator for Particularly Important Cases of the Investigation Department for the Sovetsky District of the City of Oryol, Senior Lieutenant of Justice I. A. Simonova, issues a search order for Dmitry Ignatov, who was a witness in the case of Piskarev and others in Oryol. On the same day, they come to the peasant with a search.

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    October 28, 2021 Case initiated Art. 282.2 (2)

    Investigator Simonova singles out the criminal case against Ignatov in a separate proceeding and incriminates him with participation in the activities of an extremist organization.

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    September 13, 2023 Inspection of residence

    In Ignatov's home, a half-hour inspection takes place without witnesses, which is led by Senior Lieutenant of Justice Sergey Kolomytsev. Photographs are taken, material evidence is not seized.

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    December 30, 2023 Art. 282.2 (2)

    Kolomytsev, a senior investigator of the investigation department for the Sovetsky district of the city of Orel, of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation, presents Ignatov with a decision to bring him as an accused.

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    January 29, 2024 Case went to court

    The case goes to the Sovetsky District Court of the city of Orel and is appointed to Judge Andrei Tretyakov.

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    March 4, 2024 Hearing in a court of the first instance

    Ignatov filed a petition to refuse the lawyer appointed to him by the state, the court did not satisfy him.

    The prosecutor reads out the indictment. Dmitry Ignatov expresses his attitude to the charges.

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    March 13, 2024 Hearing in a court of the first instance

    The court does not satisfy two motions filed by the defense at the previous hearing.

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    April 3, 2024 Hearing in a court of the first instance Interrogation

    Three witnesses are being questioned. None of them knows Ignatov personally. One woman says that she did not hear any propaganda of exclusivity, calls for the breakdown of family relations and disobedience to the authorities from the defendant.

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    April 10, 2024 Hearing in a court of the first instance Interrogation

    A prosecution witness who had previously testified in the case of another believer from Oryol, Vladimir Piskaryov, is being questioned. He is unfamiliar with Dmitry Ignatov. He says, "I don't know what I'm doing here."

    Another prosecution witness states that Ignatova does not know and has never met him.

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    April 17, 2024 Interrogation

    Interrogation of Witness Galstyan, who attended meetings of Jehovah's Witnesses 20 years ago. She does not know the defendant. Answering a question about the literature of Jehovah's Witnesses, the woman explains: "Previously, literature was widespread, there was no ban on it, and I read it with pleasure."

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    April 24, 2024 Hearing in a court of the first instance Interrogation

    The prosecution continues to question witnesses. Witness Antonov declares that this is the first time he has seen Ignatov, so he has nothing to tell the court about the defendant.

    Witness Zhuravlev worked at the Center for Countering Extremism and carried out surveillance of believers. He believes that conversations between friends on biblical topics mean the continuation of the activities of an extremist organization.

    Witness Panasenko does not know Ignatov, but speaks positively of Jehovah's Witnesses as human beings.

    The material evidence seized from Ignatov is considered: the Holy Scriptures, notebooks, postcards, etc.

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    May 7, 2024 Hearing in a court of the first instance

    The prosecutor provides material evidence, including several screenshots from videos of worship services. On one of them, Dmitry Ignatov reads a passage from the Bible.

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    May 15, 2024 Hearing in a court of the first instance Interrogation

    Interrogation of prosecution witness Subbotina, who had previously attended services. According to her, after religious meetings began to be held via video conferencing, she did not see Dmitry Ignatov at them.

    The public prosecutor reads out the testimonies of three witnesses who did not appear. The lawyer states that the information provided is not related to Ignatov.