Basketball player Brittney Griner sentenced to 9 years in prison


Brittney Griner was sentenced for possession of cannabis. The American basketball player had been arrested on February 17 in Moscow.

Brittney Griner sentenced to 9 years in prison
© TwitterBrittney Griner sentenced to 9 years in prison

What everyone knew would happen happened. Sadly, but the expected happened. women’s basketball star Brittney Griner received a 9-year prison sentence on “drug” charges.

The 31-year-old athlete had been arrested at the Sheremetyevo airport on February 17 after customs agents found vape cartridges in her luggage containing cannabis oil, an illegal drug in Russia and which the athlete claims she used with medicinal purposes.

Winner of two Olympic golds, among many other sporting merits, the fact is that Griner had pleaded guilty last July. “I would like to plead guilty, Your Honor. But there was no intention. I didn’t want to break the law.”. With those words, it could be said, Griner He signed his sentence before the Khimki Court, outside Moscow. “I was in a hurry to pack and the cartridges accidentally ended up in my bag”the 31-year-old athlete admitted before the Russian court that she could serve a sentence of up to 10 years.

Griner, at the time of her arrest, was returning to her country after playing the WNBA offseason for the Russian team UMMC Ekaterinburg. The United States Department of State classified Griner as unjustly detained. And, with the ruling, the player’s supporters, her teammates and numerous US officials were quick to condemn the court’s decision. The central argument of her defenders is that her detention is being used to promote the agenda of Russia on the ukrainian war.

As his lawyers vow to appeal the sentence and the Biden administration tries to negotiate his release, Griner he returned to the detention center where he remained during the trial. His attorneys are also working around the clock to make sure Griner’s guilty plea and claims of remorse will lead to a more lenient sentence. Strictly speaking, she faced up to 10 years on the charges and prosecutors requested that she be sentenced to 9.5 years in prison. In addition to her nine-year sentence, the basketball player must pay a fine of 1 million rubles, about US$16,400.

Brittney Griner pleaded guilty to drug possession in Russia

In the midst of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the case of Griner enlarged the always visible and latent differences between USA Y Russiawhere one and the other develop a political-economic dispute that adds new chapters since the times of the Cold War.

For his part, US President Joe Biden lamented the sentence: “Today, American citizen Brittney Griner has received a prison sentence that is yet another reminder of what the world already knew: Russia is wrongfully detaining Brittney. It is unacceptable, and I call on Russia to release her immediately so that she can be with her wife, her loved ones, her friends and her teammates. My administration will continue to work tirelessly and pursue every avenue possible to get Brittney and Paul Whelan home safely as soon as possible.”.

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Basketball player Brittney Griner sentenced to 9 years in prison