On August 14, 2019, Smolensk resident Ruslan Korolev was released from the pre-trial detention center, where he had spent a little less than four months. Now the believer will be under house arrest, but three more men and two women are still being held there.
On May 18, 2019, the court imposed two months of confinement on Valentina Vladimirova, 63, and Tatyana Galkevich. They became the seventh and eighth defendants in Smolensk. In April 2019, four men were jailed. Before that, Maria Troshina and Natalia Sorokina spent 191 days behind bars there.
On May 1, 2019, a court ruled to send Evgeniy Dechko, 30, to a detention center for two months. Evgeniy had been arrested in Dagomys, Krasnodar region, and brought to Smolensk, where he became the fourth imprisoned Witness in the city, joining three other men jailed earlier.
On April 26, 2019, court decided on two months’ detention for three Witnesses, Ruslan Korolev, 36, Valeriy Shalev, 41, and Viktor Malkov, 60. This is the second criminal case opened in Smolensk by the Federal Security Service (FSB). The men are suspected of participating in an extremist organization. Homes of the believers were searched.
April 15, 2019, under a court decision in Smolensk, Nataliya Sorokina and Mariya Troshina were transferred to house arrest. The two women from Sychyovka, a small town in the Smolensk region, were released from the courtroom after over six months of imprisonment.
Mariya Troshina and Nataliya Sorokina, who reside in Sychevka (Smolensk Region), were sent to a detention centre for 42 days. They are accused of professing the religion of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
On 7 October 2018, the Smolensk Directorate of the FSB conducted a number of searches in the homes of persons suspected of professing the religion of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Two women in Sychevka (Smolensk Region) could not be reached for three days.
The Supreme Court decision has caused a torrent of violations of the rights of citizens. Reports indicate that the management of institutions are initiating the dismissal of Jehovah’s Witnesses.