Photo: Anna and Aleksandr Solovyov before the start of the criminal prosecution

Criminal trial

The prosecutor requested 3.5 years in prison for faith for a resident of Perm

Perm Territory

The trial of Alexander Solovyov, who is charged under Part 2 of Article 282.2 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (organization of the activities of an extremist organization), has ended in Perm. The prosecutor's office requested that the 49-year-old believer be sent to a penal colony for a period of three and a half years (see chronology of the case).

The trial lasted six sessions, the announcement of the verdict is scheduled for July 4, 2019, 11:00. At the same time, there are no victims in the case.

Alexander Solovyov may become the second Jehovah's Witness in Russia to go to prison for his faith. Earlier this month, Dennis Christensen, a believer from Oryol, went to serve his sentence in the Kursk region.

Persecution of Jehovah's Witnesses has been growing lately, and a record number of 37 believers are being held in pre-trial detention centers in different cities of the country. This is despite the fact that the Russian government assured that the decisions of the Russian courts on the liquidation and prohibition of organizations of Jehovah's Witnesses "do not assess the doctrine of Jehovah's Witnesses, do not contain a restriction or prohibition to practice the above teachings individually." Public figures, the Human Rights Council under the President of the Russian Federation, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and other Russian and international organizations have repeatedly drawn attention to religious repressions.

Case of Solovyev in Perm

Case history
In May 2018, a criminal case was opened against Alexander Solovyov from Perm for participating in the activities of an extremist organization. The reason for this was audio recordings made on the instructions of Center “E” by a man who previously professed the religion of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Lieutenant Colonel Utkin sent these records for examination to the catechist of the Russian Orthodox Church of the Perm Theological Seminary. The indictment collected almost all the common myths about Jehovah’s Witnesses: “incitement to hatred”, “calls for the destruction of families”, “refusal of medical care” and others. After the search and interrogation, Aleksandr spent six months under house arrest. The prosecutor’s office asked to send the believer to a colony for 3.5 years. On July 4, 2019, the judge of the Ordzhonikidze District Court of Perm, Denis Shvetsov, found Solovyov guilty and sentenced him to a fine of 300 thousand rubles.

Persons in case

Criminal case

Perm Territory
Suspected of:
according to the investigation he participated in religious services, which is interpreted as participating in the activity of an extremist organisation (with reference to the decision of the Russian Supreme Court on the liquidation of all 396 registered organisations of Jehovah’s Witnesses)
Court case number:
May 22, 2018
Current case stage:
The verdict entered into force
Investigative Directorate of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation for the Perm Territory
Articles of Criminal Code of Russian Federation:
282.2 (2)
Court case number:
Орджоникидзевский районный суд Перми
Швецов Денис Иванович