Russian authorities employ covert surveillance methods

Feb 10, 2012, 12:17 PM |

For Immediate Release
January 24, 2012

Russian authorities employ covert surveillance methods to initiate criminal case

Maksim Kalinin

Maksim Kalinin

YOSHKAR-OLA, Russia—Using old-style Soviet tactics, Russian special forces entered the home of Maksim Kalinin, one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, and covertly installed audio and video surveillance equipment. On January 25, 2012, Mr. Kalinin will be tried for his religious beliefs.

“In 2010 officers recorded his everyday conversations and then, by twisting the meanings, gave them an extremist slant,” stated Kalinin’s attorney, Yegiazar Chernikov. He continued: “The accusations are all the more absurd because any expression of hatred or enmity is in complete contradiction to the personality of Mr. Kalinin, who is a peaceable and courteous person, a fact confirmed by all of the witnesses questioned during the investigation period.” Mr. Kalinin was officially charged on January 17, 2011.

It is noteworthy that the charges filed against Mr. Kalinin under Article 282(1) of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (Incitement to Hatred and Enmity) are based on the dubious conclusions of linguistics “experts” from Kemerovo State University. Attempts are presently underway to bring specialists from Kemerovo University to justice for knowingly giving false testimony in similar cases.

Media Contacts:
J. R. Brown, Office of Public Information, tel. +1 718 560 5600
Russia: Grigory Martynov, tel. +7 812 702 2691
Belgium: European Association of Jehovah’s Christian Witnesses, tel. +32 2 782 0015