On January 28, 2019, Larisa Zubova, judge of the Oktyabrskiy District Court of the city of Ivanovo, sent Yevgeniy Spirin, a 32-year-old resident of the town of Furmanov, to prison for believing in God. His detention was petitioned by FSB investigator A. N. Dmitriyev and assistant prosecutor A. B. Tsitskeyev.
On January 27, 2019, Yevgeniy Spirin was detained by FSB officers after they conducted searches in the homes of citizens suspected of practicing the religion of Jehovah's Witnesses. Yevgeniy Spirin is being charged under article 282.2 (1) of the Criminal Code for allegedly ‘organizing extremist activity.’ The investigator is charging Yevgeniy of “committing actions aimed at continuing the illegal activities of the religious organization [Jehovah's Witnesses], namely, convening and holding meetings of this organization and conducting religious conversations with residents of the Ivanovo region in order to promote the organization.”
This is the second criminal case against Jehovah's Witnesses in the Ivanovo region. The first case in Shuya was initiated by the Investigative Committee against Dmitriy Mikhailov, his wife Yelena Mikhailova, and three others under articles 282.2 (2) and 282.3 (1) of the Criminal Code. Dmitriy Mikhailov spent 171 days in pretrial detention, but was later released on the condition that he sign a recognisance agreement.
Earlier, well-known Russian public figures, the Human Rights Council under the President of the Russian Federation, as well as the President of Russia himself, spoke about the increasing violations of the rights of Jehovah's Witnesses.