Crimes Against Believers

A believer was subjected to inhuman treatment in the FSB building in Kaluga

Kaluga Region

On June 26, 2019, 43-year-old believer Roman Makhnev was handcuffed to a pipe in the FSB building in Kaluga and left in this position until the next morning. After a sleepless night, he was subjected to investigative actions. Neither on June 26, nor on June 27, nor on June 28, he was presented with any food. It was not until June 29 that he was fed breakfast for the first time.

This happened as a result of a raid by officers of the FSB of Russia in the Kaluga region against believers. A total of 6 searches were carried out, including in the apartment of an 81-year-old woman. After Roman Makhnev announced that banned literature had been planted in his house, he was taken to the FSB building instead of the temporary detention center. Makhnev's 15-year-old daughter was taken outside and forced to stand barefoot in the rain while the house was searched.

The atrocities committed by the FSB were stubbornly ignored by the Kaluga District Court. Thus, on June 28, 2019, this court avoided assessing the circumstances of the detention of believers. On the same day, the court chose Roman Makhnev, as well as 54-year-old Dmitry Kuzin, a measure of restraint in the form of detention for a period of 2 months.

Case of Makhnev and Kuzin in Kaluga

Case History
In June 2019, several homes of Jehovah’s Witnesses were searched in Kaluga, including the families of Roman Makhnev and Dmitriy Kuzin. The men were detained and soon sent to a pre-trial detention center. Both spent six months behind bars, and then another two months under house arrest. The FSB opened a criminal case against them, as well as another believer, on extremism. In November 2020, the investigation was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. The investigation resumed in March 2024.

Persons in case

Criminal case

Kaluga Region
Suspected of:
"took active organizational actions, expressed in the unification of the followers of the world organization of Jehovah's Witnesses living in the city of Kaluga and the Kaluga region, under a single leadership; convening meetings in residential quarters... organization of religious speeches and services at these meetings; carrying out the preaching activity" (from the decision to bring as an accused)
Court case number:
June 26, 2019
Current case stage:
indictment under consideration by the prosecutor
Investigation Department of FSSD of Russia for Kaluga Region
Articles of Criminal Code of Russian Federation:
282.2 (1)
Case History