Tatyana Piskareva near the regional court, where on May 16, 2024 her appeal was considered

Unjust Verdicts

Court of Appeal in Oryol Upheld the Sentence of 68-year-old Tatyana Piskareva - 2.5 Years of Forced Labor for Her Faith in Jehovah

Oryol Region

The verdict against Tatyana Piskareva, sentenced to 2.5 years of forced labor entered into force – on May 16, 2024, the Oryol Regional Court did not satisfy her appeal. The believer has already been separated for 3.5 years from her husband, who was sentenced to 6 years in a penal colony on similar charges of extremism.

In March, the Sovetskiy District Court of the city of Oryol found Piskareva guilty of participating in the activity of an extremist organization for attending peaceful meetings for worship. According to the investigation, the believer acted out of religious "hatred and enmity." However, this was not proven in court. The verdict was appealed. "I worshipped my God Jehovah peacefully ... I did not prevent anyone from living their personal lives, no one was hurt ... I obeyed the laws of the country in which I live. And suddenly I was falsely accused of something I had never participated in," Piskareva said, addressing the court of appeal in her final statement.

"My completely legitimate conduct, aimed only at expressing my faith in ways typical of Jehovah's Witnesses around the world, was wrongly regarded by the court as illegal actions ... At the same time, the law does not consider practicing the religion, which the liquidated religious associations belonged to, including together with others, as a sign of extremism. Therefore, declaring a legal entity as extremist is not tantamount to imposing a ban on a religion," Tatyana explained.

In the Oryol Region, 8 Jehovah's Witnesses have already been prosecuted for their faith, 3 of them have been sentenced to imprisonment.

The Case of Piskareva in Oryol

Case History
In December 2020, raids in the homes of Jehovah’s Witnesses took place in Oryol. The home of Vladimir Piskarev and Tatyana Piskareva was among those broken into by security forces. Vladimir was arrested. In October 2021, Tatyana also became a defendant in a criminal case for believing in Jehovah God. The believer was charged for participating in peaceful meetings for worship. In March 2023, the case went to court. A year later, Tatyana was sentenced to 2 years and 6 months of forced labor. In May 2024, the court of appeal upheld this decision.
Timeline

Persons in case

Criminal case

Region:
Oryol Region
Locality:
Oryol
Suspected of:
According to the investigation, she "took part in meetings of a banned religious organization."
Court case number:
12102540005000067
Initiated:
October 28, 2021
Current case stage:
the verdict entered into force
Investigating:
Investigation Department for the Sovetsky District of Orel of the Investigative Directorate of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation
Articles of Criminal Code of Russian Federation:
282.2 (2)
Court case number:
1-9/2024 (1-183/2023)
Court of First Instance:
Советский районный суд г. Орла
Judge of the Court of First Instance:
Дмитрий Сухов
Case History