Brittney Griner sentenced to 9 years in Russian prison after drug smuggling trial!

WNBA star Brittney Griner was sentenced to nine years behind bars in a Russian prison on charges of smuggling drugs into the country. OH.

Based on New York Times On Thursday, the judge read the 31-year-old athlete’s verdict about an hour after her lawyers and the prosecution presented their final arguments in the case in a Moscow court. The punishment was just short of the maximum 10-year sentence her lawyer called “absolutely absurd” and plans to appeal. She used to incarcerated in the country since February 17 after she allegedly had vape cartridges containing hash oil in her luggage.

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In the terminating arguments, Phoenix Mercury the player gave a cryptic speech about her arrest. The basketball player explained that she was guilty of bringing less than 1 gram of cannabis oil into Russia, but she did so “accidentally” and asked the court for leniency. She shared in court, via CNN:

“That’s why I committed to my guilt. I understand everything that has been said against me, the charges against me and that’s why I plead guilty but I have no intention of breaking any Russian laws.”

Chairperson Joe Biden told People that the ruling is “unacceptable” and that his administration is still working to take Brittney home. He shared:

“Today, American citizen Brittney Griner received a prison sentence, another reminder of what the world already knows: Russia is wrongly holding Brittney. That is unacceptable, and I urge Russia to release her immediately so that she can be with her wife, loved ones, friends and teammates. My administration will continue to work tirelessly and pursue every avenue possible to bring Brittney and Paul Whelan get home safely as soon as possible.”

Paul is another American who has been detained in the country since 2019.

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Despite the US government’s efforts to bring Brittney home, Russian prosecutors are still fighting for the harshest possible sentence. In the final argument, they asked the judge to sentence Griner to nine years and six months in prison and fine her 1 million rubles (or about $16,600), New York Times reported.

Last week, the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, revealed that the Biden administration had offered Russia a “significant” deal to secure Brittney and Paul’s release, but that Russia had yet to take it seriously. Here’s hoping they do! Nine years as the brutal king for a crime she didn’t even realize she was committing – and a crime that had no negative impact on those around her! We’re thinking about Brittney as much as she is wife, Cherelle, and all their family and friends as they continue to deal with this legal challenge. React, longtime readers?!

[Image via Brittney Griner/Instagram]

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