WNBA’s Griner sentenced to 9 years in Russia

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Who is Brittney Griner and what’s her fate in Russia?

STORY: Who is Brittney Griner, the American basketball star who has been detained in Russia since February?The 31-year-old is a two-time Olympic championand star player in the Women’s National Basketball Association, or WNBA.Since 2014, she has also played for UMMC Ekaterinburg in Russia during the WNBA offseason.On February 17, she was detained at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airportwith vape cartridges containing hashish oil in her luggage.Marijuana is illegal in Russia for both medicinal and recreational purposes.(Audio of Griner) “No, my rights were never read to me. No one explained any of it to me.”Griner pleaded guilty to the drugs chargesbut insists she did not intend to break Russian law.She testified that she did not know how the cartridges could have ended up in her luggage.Griner has a prescription in the U.S. for medical marijuana to relieve pain from chronic injuries.It’s a common treatment method among athletes where the substance is legal.But Griner has always denied intentionally bringing it into Russia.U.S. officials and prominent athletes say Griner has been wrongly detainedand have accused Russia of using her as a political pawnat a time when U.S.-Russian relations are the most strained since the 1962 Cuban missile crisis.President Joe Biden is under pressure to intervene on behalf of detained Americans – including Griner.”We are not ever going to be quiet until she’s home safely. Thank you for your love, your voices, and foryour prayers. We are BG.”

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