Rinat Kiramov in the courtroom on the day of the verdict

Crimes Against Believers

One of Convicted Jehovah's Witnesses from Akhtubinsk Was Tortured

Tula Region,   Astrakhan Region

A resident of the Astrakhan region, Rinat Kiramov, sentenced to 7 years in prison for his beliefs, was tortured in medical correctional institution No. 3 of the Tula region, as he was demanded to incriminate his fellow believers. This is stated in the appeal of Kiramov's lawyer to the prosecutor's office.

In April last year, Rinat Kiramov and two other believers were convicted of talking with friends on biblical topics. Rinat Kiramov was sent to serve his sentence in colony No. 6 of the Tula region. However, on April 18, 2024, Kiramov was transferred to the medical correctional institution No. 3 of the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia in the Tula Region in connection with the suspicion of tuberculosis.

A few days later, Galina Kiramova, Rinat's wife, visited him on a short date and immediately noticed bruises on her husband's face. As lawyer Denis Zubanov found out, on April 20, several prisoners demanded that Rinat give the names of Jehovah's Witnesses living in Akhtubinsk. After refusing to do so, the believer has been beaten for several days, as well as tortured with waterboarding and with a stun gun. From April 20 to April 24, he was deprived of sleep, and was allowed to eat only once a day. "During the entire time spent in the medical correctional institution... he was not allowed to brush his teeth, shave, go to the bathhouse or even sit," stated in the lawyer's interview protocol of Kiramov.

The lawyer appealed to the Tula Prosecutor for Supervision of Compliance with Laws in Correctional Institutions with a statement about an urgent medical examination of Kiramov and verification of the legality of his transfer to the medical correctional institution.

The internal service of the correctional institution carried out an investigation into the allegations of torture. As a result, as stated in the relevant document, injuries were found on Kiramov's body, which is "a sign of corpus delicti."

As follows from the response of the Prosecutor's Office of the Tula Region, on May 3, 2024, the materials were transferred to the "Skuratovskiy" police department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs for the city of Tula for further investigation.

Tuberculosis was not confirmed in the believer, so on May 17 he was sent from the medical institution back to Tula Penal colony No. 6.

The Case of Korolev and Others in Akhtubinsk

Case History
On the morning of November 2021, Jehovah’s Witnesses were searched and interrogated in Akhtubinsk and Znamensk (Astrakhan Region). Some of them had previously been under surveillance. The security forces broke down doors, damaged property, and laid both men and women on the floor. The Investigative Committee opened a criminal case against Sergey Korolev, Rinat Kiramov and Sergey Kosyanenko, considering peaceful worship to be extremist activities. The believers were placed in a temporary detention center, and then in a pre-trial detention center, where they spent more than a year and a half. In October 2022, the case went to court. Some witnesses for the prosecution, including the classified one, partially or completely retracted their preliminary testimony. In April 2023, the court sentenced Korolev, Kiramov and Kosyanenko to 7 years in prison each. Four months later, an appeal upheld the verdict against the believers. The Court of Cassation upheld this decision. In April 2024, Rinat Kiramov was illegally transferred to LIU No. 3 in the Tula Region, where he was subjected to bullying and torture.

Persons in case

Criminal case

Astrakhan Region
Suspected of:
According to the investigation, "organized meetings ... including the use of video conferencing ... namely, in the form of collective religious worship consisting of the public reproduction of audio and video recordings... sequential singing of songs from a special collection of religious teachings of Jehovah's Witnesses and prayers to Jehovah God."
Court case number:
November 9, 2021
Current case stage:
the verdict entered into force
Akhtubinsk Interdistrict Investigation Department of the Investigative Directorate of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation for the Astrakhan Region
Articles of Criminal Code of Russian Federation:
282.2 (1), 282.3 (1)
Court case number:
1-9/2023 (1–342/2022)
Court of First Instance:
Ахтубинский районный суд Астраханской области
Judge of the Court of First Instance:
Анатолий Проскурин
Case History