Photo: residents of Zelenogorsk came to court for a hearing on the election of a preventive measure for Aleksandr Kabanov

Criminal Investigation and Trial

In the closed city of Zelenogorsk, the believer spent a day in an isolation ward. The security forces asked to send him to a pre-trial detention center, but the court refused

Krasnoyarsk Territory

On December 26, 2019, a series of searches of Jehovah's Witnesses' homes took place in the Krasnoyarsk Territory. At least 8 people, including minors, were taken for questioning. 59-year-old Aleksandr Kabanov spent a day behind bars. On December 27, however, the court refused to send him to jail.

Update. It became known that the minors were not taken away for interrogation, but were interrogated at the place of the search.

Despite the severe frost, about 40 anxious citizens came to the hearing on the election of a preventive measure for Alexander Kabanov. Almost none of them were allowed to attend the hearing and were even escorted out of the courthouse. For about 3 hours, the believer's friends waited for what the court would say, taking turns warming themselves in cars. All of them breathed a sigh of relief when they learned about the court's refusal to send Aleksandr Kabanov to the pre-trial detention center.

This is not the first time that law enforcement agencies in the Krasnoyarsk Territory have persecuted ordinary people and deprived them of their legal right to practice their religion. Compared to other regions, the Krasnoyarsk Territory is engaged in a very active struggle against the religion of Jehovah's Witnesses . The fight against the "undesirable" faith has been launched in six cities of the region at once - Krasnoyarsk, Norilsk, Minusinsk, Sharypov, Achinsk, and now in Zelenogorsk.

Currently, investigations are underway in this region against seven believers: Krasnoyarsk, Minusinsk, Sharypovo, Norilsk and Achinsk. Aleksandr Polozov from Norilsk was taken into custody in pre-trial detention center No. 4 in the Krasnoyarsk Territory. Most recently, on the night of December 20, 2019, Anton Ostapenko from Sharypovo was released from pre-trial detention center No. 3 under house arrest, after 246 days behind bars. And the case of Andrey Stupnikov has been dragging on since July 3, 2018.

The case of Kabanov in Zelenogorsk

Case History
Siberian Aleksandr Kabanov faced criminal prosecution for believing in God at the end of December 2019. Then a series of searches took place in the homes of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Zelenogorsk. The believer spent a day behind bars, after which he was released. He was accused of “holding weekly religious meetings, distributing religious… attitudes and the involving of new adherents”, which the investigator of the Investigative Committee equated with participation in the activities of an extremist organization. The case has been pending in court since February 2021. The result of the first trial was a guilty verdict - 2 years suspended. However, the appeal overturned this decision and returned the case to the prosecutor. A new trial began in June 2023 and ended with another return of the case to the prosecutor’s office. This time, the appellate court did not agree with such a decision - the case was sent for yet another consideration in the city court.

Persons in case

Criminal case

Krasnoyarsk Territory
Suspected of:
According to investigators, he "organized ... the activities of 24 groups of members of the banned organization and supervised their activities during weekly religious meetings, the dissemination of religious and ideological attitudes of the banned organization, as well as the involvement of new adherents"
Court case number:
December 26, 2019
Current case stage:
trial in Court of First Instance
Joint Investigative Directorate for the Closed Administrative District of Zelenogorsk of the Main Investigative Directorate of the Investigative Committee of Russia for the Krasnoyarsk Territory and the Republic of Khakassia
Articles of Criminal Code of Russian Federation:
282.2 (2)
Court case number:
1-4/2024 (1-129/2023; 1-1/2022; 1-67/2021)
Зеленогорский городской суд Красноярского края
Judge of the Court of First Instance:
Доронин Станислав
Case History