Brittney Griner Is Sentenced To Face 9 years In prison After Court Trial
Since the NBA star, Brittney Griner got arrested for carrying vape cartridges that held cannabis oil —she has been held tight by the Russian law court. Last Thursday ended the beginning of trials that spun within six months.
She was arrested in Russia for carrying cannabis. According to Russian law, Cannabis is illegal; The New York Times reported.
Investigators found less than one gram of cannabis oil in her luggage when arrested at the Moscow airport in February.
The charge says she smuggled the said substance with criminal intent. Meanwhile, the NBA star has provided information that it was a medical prescription to help ease her pain.
Griner has to serve her 9 years in a penal colony. The time spent going back and forth during the trials would be counted toward the 9-year sentence.
It’s been a big surprise to many Americans including President Joe Biden. This sentence seems too harsh and unfair for the American NBA star. As some speculate the ongoing war and its indirect associated conflict with the USA might have provoked the Russian government to punish the American citizen for breaking their laws.
President Joe Biden immediately released a statement after the verdict and sentence were handed down.
“Today, American citizen Brittney Griner received a prison sentence that is one more reminder of what the world already knew: Russia is wrongfully detaining Brittney. It’s unacceptable, and I call on Russia to release her immediately so she can be with her wife, loved ones, friends, and teammates. My administration will continue to work tirelessly and pursue every possible avenue to bring Brittney and Paul Whelan home safely as soon as possible.”
— President Joe Biden
The American government is working hard to set Griner free but that doesn’t seem so easy. Because Griner admitted to being guilty of her action. She pleaded guilty to let the prosecutor be lenient with her offense. However, that didn’t really reflect the outcome.
Sources say while the U.S. is pushing for Griner’s release, with that of Paul Wheland, the ball remains in Russia’s court on how that country wants to proceed.
Major News outlet like CNN has been following this trending issue and has reported that Griner was also fined 1 million rubles or about $16,400.
The Attorneys of Griner are doing their best to settle this case amicably. The New York Times reported that the defense team called the verdict “absolutely unreasonable,” adding, the court “completely ignored all the evidence of the defense, and most importantly the guilty plea. ”
Brittney Griner has apologized to her teammates, fans, the Phoenix Mercury organization, parents, spouse and loved ones and hoping everything will be fine in the long run.
There are ongoing talks about this and things are heating up to the extent that there is likely to be a prisoner swap if indeed Griner is set to begin her prison sentence.