US basketball star languishes in Russian prison | Page 2 | Sunday Observer

US basketball star languishes in Russian prison

15 May, 2022
Brittney Griner
Brittney Griner

The American basketball star Brittney Griner’s pre-trial detention in Russia has been extended for one month.

Ms Griner, 31, has been in custody since February after Moscow airport officials allegedly found cannabis oil in her luggage, while she was returning to the US after playing in Russia.

US officials said she was wrongfully imprisoned and should be released.

Ms Griner - regarded as one of the world’s best female players - faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted.

An Associated Press photograph shows Ms Griner wearing an orange hoodie and looking down at the court hearing, held in the city of Khimki just outside Moscow.

The US State Department said a consular official attended the hearing, and spoke to Ms Griner on the margins.

A spokesman said Ms Griner was doing “as well as can be expected during exceedingly difficult circumstances”.

Following the hearing, her lawyer told AP that Ms Griner hadn’t conveyed “any complaints about the detention conditions”.

Citing unnamed government officials, state-owned Russian news agency TASS is reporting that Russia hopes to trade Ms Griner for Viktor Bout, an arms trafficker convicted in the US. (BBC Sports)