In 1990, in an effort to conform to global standards of human rights, both the USSR and the Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic promulgated new laws on freedom of conscience that provided a broad freedom for religious expression and proselytisation. But by 1997, alarmed by the rise of new religious movements, the Russian Duma passed a more restrictive version of the law designed to favour the ‘traditional’ religions of Russia, which were enumerated in the law’s preamble as Orthodox Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Buddhism. Although critics predicted that the 1997 law would result in a significant diminution of religious freedom, the creativity of some religious organisations (such as the Russian Associated Union of Christians of Evangelical Faith, Pentecostals, led by the politically savvy Sergei Riakhovskii) and several liberal judicial decisions have allowed many religious minorities to establish and maintain a legal presence in the Russian Federation over the last fifteen years. Nevertheless, by placing restrictions on legal registration and juridical personhood for religious organisations, the law presented particular challenges to new religions. Using a variety of sources, this chapter examines the effects of the law on new religious movements.