Date of disappearance: May 9, 2022
Place of disappearance: Kherson, Kherson region
Pavlo Zaporozhets, a 30-year-old lawyer from Kherson, was detained by the Russian military on May 9, 2022, in Kherson. Before that, he had lived in the occupied city for almost three months – on February 24, Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. The man has experience of serving in the Armed Forces of Ukraine after 2014. He retired and most recently worked in the state tax service. After the occupation of the Kherson region, Russians began to organize raids and searches in the city: they were looking for those with military experience. Former soldiers and their families were considered potentially dangerous to Russia and capable of resisting. After his abduction, Pavlo was held in a temporary detention center in Kherson for four months, then transferred to SIZO 1 in Simferopol.
The man’s house was searched, and equipment was seized. In October 2022, Zaporozhets and other civilian detainees were transferred to SIZO 2. Pavlo’s sister, Maryna, says that he was beaten in Crimea, and in February 2023, he was transferred to Rostov-on-Don in the Russian Federation. There, a trial began — Zaporozhets was accused of violating Article 361 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation for “intent to commit a terrorist act” in Kherson. Pavlo’s family has filed a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights against his illegal detention and hopes for publicity and a response from international organizations.