MAY 24, 2021
The Circassian City Court of the Karachayevo-Circassian Republic will soon announce its verdict in the case involving Brother Albert Batchaev. *
Born: 1976 (Karachayevsk)
Biography: Has three sisters and one brother. Lost his mother in death and cares for his elderly father. Educated as a lawyer in a military school and served as a senior operative in criminal investigations
Studied the Bible and became convinced of its credibility. Was baptized as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses in 2004. Married his wife, Zhanna, in 2007. Currently, installs doors for work. Poor health limits his physical activity. He and Zhanna enjoy taking drives and occasional walks in the local mountains and being outdoors
On December 16, 2019, Federal Security Service (FSB) agents searched nearly a dozen homes in the city of Cherkessk. As a result, many brothers were detained.
The day after the raid, all were released except Brother Albert Batchaev. He was ordered to be held in a temporary detention center for at least 72 hours and charged with organizing others to sing and pray to Jehovah. After Albert was criminally charged, his friends and acquaintances have reported being followed by the authorities.
“When they placed me in the temporary detention facility and closed the heavy, creaking iron door to the cell with its clanking chains, it rattled my bones,” Albert recalls. “I thought that I would never leave that place; I would die there. I was very concerned about what was happening to my wife and the brothers.”
Albert spent nearly two months in pretrial detention and then his detention was reduced to house arrest. A week later, however, he was again sent to pretrial detention, this time for seven weeks. Albert recalls: “In prison, especially while in total isolation, I developed a greater appreciation for the importance of having a spiritual routine and to be busy in Kingdom activity. It served to fuel me so that I would not become weak and lose my faith, endurance, hope, or love for Jehovah and my fellowman.”
He was able to acquire a Bible, which is not always available in prison. Albert says: “The Bible was a lifeline for me. It saved me from despair and from excessively missing my dear loved ones.” More than ever before, he could relate to faithful ones in the Bible who experienced severe hardship and imprisonment. He explains: “They never were so real, alive, and close to me as when I was in prison. Now, I feel that I have many friends from both the past and the present.”
In April 2020, the court transferred Albert to house arrest for an initial term of two months. His term has been extended four times. The last extension period started in late March and is scheduled to end in late June 2021.
We know that Jehovah will continue to strengthen and care for Brother Batchaev and all His loyal servants under trial.—1 Chronicles 29:12.
^ par. 3 Advance notice of the verdict date is not always available.