Updated: May 28, 2024
Name: Christensen Dennis Ole
Date of Birth: December 18, 1972
Current status: who has served the main sentence
Articles of Criminal Code of Russian Federation: 282.2 (1)
Time spent in prison: 1 day in a temporary detention facility, 727 day in a pre-trial detention, 1097 day in prison
Sentence: punishment in the form of 6 years of imprisonment with serving the sentence in a correctional colony of general regime
Currently held in: Penal Colony No. 3 in Kursk Region
Address for correspondence: Christensen Dennis Ole, born 1972, IK No. 3 in Kursk Region, ul. Primakova, 23a, Lgov, Kursk Region, Russia, 307754

Biography

Dennis Christensen was born in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1972 to a family that professes the religion of Jehovah's Witnesses. He has a younger sister, Maybritt, with whom Dennis has maintained close friendships since childhood. In 1989, Dennis made a conscious decision to be baptized and become one of Jehovah's Witnesses.

In 1991 he graduated from carpentry courses, in 1993 he received a diploma in construction technician at the Higher School of Craftsmen in Haslev (Denmark). From the age of 19, Dennis lived separately from his parents and provided for himself.

In 1995, Dennis came to St. Petersburg to volunteer in the construction of Jehovah's Witnesses buildings in Solnechnoye. He fell in love with Russia, and in 1999 he moved to Murmansk. There he met his future wife, Irina, who by then had become a Jehovah's Witness relatively recently. They got married in 2002, and in 2006 decided to move south to Oryol.

Here Dennis worked as an individual entrepreneur, offering his services as a builder, a master of interior decoration. Having no children of his own, Dennis was enthusiastically engaged in the improvement of the playground in the courtyard of his house on the street. Dennis and Irina Christensen have good relations with their neighbors.

On February 6, 2019, the Zheleznodorozhny District Court found Christensen guilty of extremism. He was sentenced to 6 years of imprisonment in a general regime colony located in Lgov (Kursk region). On May 23, 2019, the Court of Appeal upheld this verdict.

Case History

Dennis Christensen is the first Jehovah’s Witness in modern Russia to be imprisoned only because of his faith. He was arrested in May 2017. The FSB accused the believer of organizing the activities of a banned organization on the basis of the testimony of a secret witness, theologian Oleg Kurdyumov from a local university, who kept covert audio and video recordings of conversations with Christensen about faith. There are no extremist statements or victims in the case. In 2019, the court sentenced Christensen to 6 years in prison. The believer was serving time in the Lgov colony. He repeatedly asked for the replacement of part of the unserved term with a fine. For the first time, the court granted the request, but the prosecutor’s office appealed this decision, and the prison administration threw the believer into a punishment cell on trumped-up charges. Christensen developed illnesses that prevented him from working in prison. On May 24, 2022, the believer was released after serving his sentence and was immediately deported to his homeland, Denmark.