Gaybullo Jalilov is a human rights defender sentenced to more than 11 years in prison on religious extremism charges. Before his arrest, Mr. Jalilov was a member of the Human Rights Society of Uzbekistan, where his work focused on government violations of religious freedom, and in particular, on the persecution of independent Muslims in Uzbekistan.
On September 5, 2009, Mr. Jalilov was forced into a vehicle by several men and held incommunicado for nearly three weeks before his father received written notification that criminal charges were being brought against him. Authorities charged Mr. Jalilov and three other men with anti-constitutional activity, distribution of materials that threatened public security, and membership in a banned religious organization. During the trial, Mr. Jalilov testified that he had been coerced into signing a confession that he was guilty on all counts. Authorities relocated hearings without notifying Mr. Jalilov’s attorney or family. In a closed hearing on January 18, 2010, Mr. Jalilov was found guilty and sentenced to nine years in prison.
New charges were brought against Mr. Jalilov in August 2010 based on witness statements that Mr. Jalilov had actively participated in religious gatherings, and that during these gatherings, he had taken part in religious studies and watched DVDs that contained religious extremist content. None of these witnesses appeared in court. On August 4, 2010 in a closed hearing, Mr. Jalilov was sentenced to an additional two years’ imprisonment, extending his sentence to more than 11 years.