A Record 269 Searches of Homes of Jehovah's Witnesses for the Year (Review)

Police raid in Kostroma, 2018. Photo source: «ТВ Центр»

According to available information, over the past 12 months 269 searches in the homes of Jehovah's Witnesses were conducted throughout Russia as a direct consequence of the ban on their activity. Any search turns the life of an innocent person into a nightmare, affecting health, causing deep emotional trauma, and undermining their reputation.

In January 2018, 12 searches took place in Kemerovo and 13 searches in Belgorod. In April 2018, eight searches were conducted: two in Ufa, four in Polyarny (Murmansk region) and two in Vladivostok. In May 2018, a total of 68 searches were conducted: 17 in Orenburg, 22 in Birobidzhan, one in Perm, eight in Oryol, ten in Naberezhnye Chelny (Tatarstan), six in Shuya (Ivanovo region), and four in Magadan. In June 2018, a total of 19 searches were conducted: four in Pskov, at least two in Tomsk, seven in Saratov, and eight in Lensk (Yakutia). In July 2018, 27 searches were conducted: four in Omsk, four in Penza, two in the village of Razdolnoye (Primorsky Territiory), three in Blagoveshchensk, eight in Berezovskiy (Kemerovo region), two in Kostroma, one in Nakhodka (Primorsky Territory ), and three in Vilyuchinsk (Kamchatka). In August 2018, 12 searches were conducted: at least one in Karpinsk (Sverdlovsk region), four in Khabarovsk, three in Spassk-Dalniy (Primorsky Territiory), and four in Yelizovo (Kamchatka). In September 2018, 13 searches were conducted: six in Perm and seven in Kostroma. In October 2018, 38 searches took place: eight in Sychevka and Smolensk, 19 in Kirov, and 11 in Dyurtyuli (Bashkortostan). In November 2018, 51 searches were conducted: 20 in Krasnoyarsk, 10 in Novosibirsk, four in Khabarovsk, eight in Dzhankoy (Crimea), five in Nevinnomyssk (Stavropol Territory), and four in Spassk-Dalniy (Primorsky Territory). In December 2018, eight searches were conducted: one in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and seven in Neftekumsk (Stavropol Territory).

In addition to home searches, at least 57 people were subjected to personal searches (where the body of a person is searched, including his clothes, shoes, and personal belongings, for objects relevant to the criminal case).

Such searches are a significant restriction to the constitutional right to freedom and personal immunity, inviolability of private life, personal and family secrets, the protection of honor and reputation, and inviolability of the home.