Russia’s Far East resident gets suspended term for creating Jehovah's Witnesses cell
MOSCOW, January 21 (RAPSI) – A court in Russia’s Far East Primorsky Region has given a local resident a 5-year suspended sentence for establishing a chapter of banned Jehovah’s Witnesses, the press-service of Russia’s Investigative Committee informs on Tuesday.
The man was found guilty of violating a Criminal Code article on organization of activities of a religious association liquidated by a final court ruling as an extremist one, the Committee’s statement reads; he was also prohibited to take part in any activities relating to public associations for 5 years.
According to the investigation, the man organized activity of the banned organization in the region in order to propagate its religious doctrine.
In April 2017, the Supreme Court of Russia ordered liquidation of the Jehovah's Witnesses managing organization and all its 395 local branches. In August, the Administrative Centre of Jehovah's Witnesses was added to the list of banned extremist organizations.
Jehovah’s Witnesses religious organization has had many legal problems in Russia. Since 2009, 95 materials distributed by the organization in the country have been declared extremist and 8 Jehovah's Witnesses’ branches have been liquidated, according to the Justice Ministry.
Jehovah's Witnesses is an international religious organization based in Brooklyn, New York. Since 2004 several branches and chapters of the organization were banned and shut down in various regions of Russia.