The case of Byche and Others in Vladivostok

Case History

After a series of searches in Vladivostok in March 2023, three Jehovah’s Witnesses were detained and placed in a temporary detention facility. Two days later, Yegor Pogrebnyak was released under house arrest, and Yuriy Byche and Sergey Novoselov were sent to a pre-trial detention center. A criminal case was opened against the believers under an extremist article. Later that month, Tatiana Kazakova, Marina Roslova, Alina Tkachenko, Anastasia Dyldina and Elena Romanova became defendants in the case. And in December, after new searches, Kirill Chekolayev was arrested and placed in a pre-trial detention center. He spent about 5 months in prison, and Novoselov and Byche spent almost a year. All three were released under a ban on certain actions.

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    March 5, 2023
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    March 27, 2023 Detention center

    Sergey Novoselov and Yuriy Byche are held in cells, where in addition to them there are 4 more prisoners. The believers have respectful relations with them and the administration.

    The state of health of Yuriy and Sergey is satisfactory. Immediately after entering the pre-trial detention center, Sergey caught a cold. Since the TV is constantly working in the camera, he has to use earplugs. Yuri's lower back pain intensified.

    Believers receive a large number of letters. They have some parts of the Bible – the Psalter and the New Testament.

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    December 7, 2023 Violence by law enforcement officers Search Elderly
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    December 10, 2023 Detention center

    The investigator allowed Yuriy Bycha to meet with his wife and eldest daughter.

    Yuri is being held in a cell with several other detainees, with whom he develops a respectful relationship. He is the eldest of them.

    Yuriy receives letters, it is possible to receive parcels.

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    December 11, 2023 Detention center

    Sergey Novoselov receives permission to meet with his family.

    Sergey's cellmates often change, but thanks to his sociability and peaceful attitude, he has good relations with everyone. He receives letters with words of support, as well as parcels.

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    December 18, 2023 Detention center

    The detained 19-year-old Kirill Chekolayev was transferred to a regular cell in a pre-trial detention center. During quarantine, he suffered a severe cold. The believer has not yet received parcels and parcels, but several letters have already arrived. He does not lose heart, keeps calm and confident. With the permission of the investigator, Kirill had a meeting with his father.

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    February 22, 2024 Detention center Prohibition of certain actions

    Yuriy Byche and Sergey Novoselov were released from the pre-trial detention center. The measure of restraint for them has been replaced by a ban on certain actions.

    Kirill Chekolayev's detention in the pre-trial detention center is extended for another 3 months.

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    May 3, 2024 Prohibition of certain actions

    Kirill Chekolayev is released under a ban on certain actions. He spent about 5 months in the pre-trial detention center.