Three Russians arrested in Uzbekistan for creating religious sect
MOSCOW, March 20 (RAPSI) – Uzbek police have arrested three Russians for creating and maintaining a religious sect, RIA Novosti reported on Friday, citing a spokesman of the Uzbek Interior Ministry.
The police closed down the sect called the House of the Initially Divine Father (DIVO) and arrested 48 of its active members, including the three Russians, the ministry spokesman said. The arrested had DVD disks, memory sticks and laptop computers containing religious texts.
The spokesman said that one of the detained Russians, Tamara Daova from the Novosibirsk Region, held monthly paid sessions for training in the psychological conditioning of the followers for the past six months. She allegedly received over $30,000 for these sessions.
Uzbek police believe that the DIVO sect, which has been operating in Russia and Uzbekistan, also has followers in Kazakhstan.
Those arrested could face administrative charges and be fined up to 100 times their minimal monthly wages (about $5,000). Daova could be charged with preparing and disseminating materials that threaten public safety and order, the penalty for which is up to three years in prison.