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Brother and Sister Polyakov (left), Sisters Bektemirova (top right), and Dyusekeyeva (bottom right)

SEPTEMBER 25, 2020

First Married Couple Placed in Pretrial Detention in Russia Face Criminal Conviction Along With Two Other Sisters

First Married Couple Placed in Pretrial Detention in Russia Face Criminal Conviction Along With Two Other Sisters

Scheduled Verdict

On October 21, 2020, * the Pervomayskiy District Court of the City of Omsk is scheduled to announce its verdict in the case involving Brother Sergey Polyakov and his wife, Anastasia, as well as Sisters Gaukhar Bektemirova and Dinara Dyusekeyeva. The prosecutor asked the court to sentence Brother Polyakov to six and a half years in prison. The three sisters each face a two-year suspended prison sentence.


Sergey Polyakov

  • Born: 1972 (Murmansk Region)

  • Biography: Attended college and became a radiophysicist. Married Anastasia in 2003

Anastasia Polyakova

  • Born: 1984 (Murmansk Region)

  • Biography: Studied law in college. She and Sergey enjoy learning languages, including Chinese, Kazakh, Russian Sign Language, and Serbian

Gaukhar Bektemirova

  • Born: 1976 (Uryl, Kazakhstan)

  • Biography: Youngest of six children. Grew up in the mountains of Kazakhstan and has always loved nature. Spent years wondering about the true meaning of life. Finally found logical and satisfying answers in the Bible. Deep study of God’s Word has given her strength and comfort in the face of unjust detention

Dinara Dyusekeyeva

  • Born: 1982 (Leningradskoye, Kazakhstan)

  • Biography: Thought deeply about the meaning of life as a young girl. Started studying the Bible at age 17. Appreciated the Bible’s wisdom and was thrilled to learn its Author’s name, Jehovah. Enjoys basketball, volleyball, running, and cycling

Case History

On the night of July 4, 2018, Brother Polyakov and his wife, Anastasia, were sleeping when an assault squad broke through the door of their apartment. Masked officers brutally beat Brother Polyakov. The officers arrested the couple and sent them to a pretrial detention center. They became the first married couple jailed following the 2017 Supreme Court ruling criminalizing the activity of Jehovah’s Witnesses. The Polyakovs spent five months in solitary confinement, separated from each other. This was followed by three months together under house arrest.

In May 2019, authorities conducted a new wave of illegal raids on the homes of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the Omsk Region. As a result, Sisters Bektemirova and Dyusekeyeva were arrested. Their cases were added to the Polyakovs’ criminal case. The combined trial began on April 1, 2020.

We are confident that Jehovah will supply his servants with the strength needed to endure these injustices.—Ephesians 3:20.

^ par. 3 Subject to change