The US State Department maintains that Griner is being wrongfully detained, and her case has raised concerns that she is being used as a political pawn in Russia’s war on Ukraine. US officials have offered a potential prisoner swap with Russia in an attempt to get her home safely.
Griner, 31, was arrested in February for carrying vape cartridges containing cannabis oil in her luggage. The two-time U.S. Olympic basketball gold medalist pleaded guilty to drug charges and said she accidentally packaged the drugs while in a hurry.
The nine-year sentence, along with a fine of around $16,400, was handed down on August 4 by Khimki City Court Judge Anna Sotnikova, who said the court took the confession into account. Griner’s partial guilt, his remorse for the act, his medical condition and his charitable activities. .
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