Updated: June 20, 2024
Name: Romashov Paul Yuryevich
Date of Birth: July 3, 1974
Current status: convicted person
Articles of Criminal Code of Russian Federation: 282.2 (2), 282.3 (1)
Current restrictions: recognizance agreement
Sentence: punishment in the form of 6 years 7 months of imprisonment, with deprivation of the right to engage in activities related to leadership and participation in the work of public organizations for a period of 3 years, with restriction of liberty for a period of 1 year, punishment in the form of imprisonment shall be considered conditional with a probationary period of 3 years 8 months


On February 15, 2019, one of the most massive and inhuman operations against believers took place in Surgut and several other cities of the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug. Seven people were tortured, three were sent to a pre-trial detention center (two of them spent 56 days behind bars), and the total number of defendants in criminal cases exceeded 20. Among them are the spouses Pavel Romashov and Viola Shepel. What do we know about Paul?

Pavel was born in 1974 in Tomsk. He was brought up without a father. Mom is a master of the radio editing section, currently retired. There are two more siblings. As a child, he was fond of sports, in particular, hockey and hand-to-hand combat. He graduated from college, having received the professions of a bricklayer, installer and electric welder. After serving in the army, he worked in the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia. Later he moved to Surgut to live with relatives, where he worked for some time in an armed guard until he became acquainted with the truths from the Bible. Currently, he is a building repair and maintenance worker at Surgutneftegaz.

He met his future wife Viola in Tomsk, and the marriage was registered in Surgut in 2003. Viola works as a district nurse in the pediatric department. About a year after the wedding, the couple, observing how biblical truths have a beneficial effect on their family, made a conscious decision to live according to the commandments of Christ. They were deeply touched by the love and friendship that prevails among those who truly love God.

Pavel and Viola have a teenage daughter. The whole family loves to be in nature and travel together by car. Often organize holidays for friends and family.

Pavel's mother, his sister and friends are very worried about the spouses, watching with fear the injustice that is happening to them.

Case History

In February 2019, the Investigative Committee opened a criminal case against 18 men and 1 woman from Surgut (among them was a man mistaken for a Jehovah’s Witness). Their homes were searched. During the interrogations, 7 believers were subjected to violence. Artur Severinchik was sent to a pre-trial detention center for 29 days, and Yevgeny Fedin and Sergey Loginov - for 56. Timofey Zhukov was illegally placed in a psychiatric hospital for 14 days. Believers complained about the use of torture to the Investigative Committee, the ECHR and the Commissioner for Human Rights, a press conference was held with the participation of human rights defenders, but none of the security forces was ever brought to justice. In October 2021, the case materials were submitted to the court. The prosecutor requested imprisonment for the defendants for a term of 3 years and 3 months to 8.5 years in prison, and for Loginov - 9.5 years, which was the most severe request for punishment for believing in Jehovah God in modern Russia.