Brittney Griner

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Biden: US Prisoner Swap Required 'Difficult Decisions'

US frees Afghan drug lord in exchange for American Mark Frerichs

(Newser) - Update: The White House acknowledged and hailed the release of American hostage Mark Frerichs from Afghanistan on Monday. "Bringing the negotiations that led to Mark’s freedom to a successful resolution required difficult decisions, which I did not take lightly," said President Biden in a statement, per USA ...

Biden to Meet With Families of Griner, Whelan

Both are jailed in Russia

(Newser) - President Biden plans to meet at the White House on Friday with family members of WNBA star Brittney Griner and Michigan corporate security executive Paul Whelan , both of whom remain jailed in Russia, senior administration officials told the AP . The separate meetings are to be the first in-person encounter between...

Rodman: 'I Got Permission to Go to Russia to Help That Girl'

NBA legend hopes to leave this week to advocate for Brittney Griner's release

(Newser) - NBA alum Dennis Rodman says he's received permission to go to Russia to appeal for the release of WNBA star Brittney Griner and could depart soon. "I got permission to go to Russia to help that girl. I'm trying to go this week," he told NBC...

Brittney Griner Is 'Quite Shocked'
Brittney Griner
Appeals Her Sentence

Brittney Griner Appeals Her Sentence

Her lawyers in Russia make move amid talks on a possible prisoner swap

(Newser) - (Updated to reflect her appeal.) Lawyers for Brittney Griner have formally appealed her nine-year sentence for drug smuggling in Russia, reports CNN . The WNBA's star's legal team has said the sentence was unusually harsh given the relatively small amount of drugs involved—cannabis oil in vape cartridges....

Russia Warns Against 'Megaphone Diplomacy' in Griner Case

Officials say prisoner swap must be discussed privately

(Newser) - The first rule of prisoner exchanges is apparently not to talk about prisoner exchanges, according to statements from Russian officials after the sentencing of Brittney Griner. Officials say they're ready to talk about a prisoner exchange for the American basketball star in private, but it's not going to...

Biden: Griner Sentence 'Unacceptable'

President calls on Russia to release the WNBA star immediately

(Newser) - The trial of WNBA star Brittney Griner in Russia ended pretty much the way everyone expected it would on Thursday—with a guilty verdict and a nine-year sentence in a penal colony. Afterward, President Biden denounced the sentence on drug charges. "It's unacceptable, and I call on Russia...

Griner Convicted of Drug Charges in Russian Court
Brittney Griner
Sentenced in Russia

Brittney Griner Sentenced in Russia

WNBA star gets 9 years after being found guilty on drug charges

(Newser) - Updated with new details throughout. Brittney Griner has been convicted on drug possession charges in Russia and sentenced to nine years in prison, reports the AP . Before the verdict, an emotional Griner apologized Thursday for her actions, with a prosecutor urging that the American basketball star be convicted and sentenced...

Brittney Griner to Learn Her Fate Within Hours

Russian prosecutors request 9.5-year sentence for WNBA star

(Newser) - Brittney Griner is expected to learn her fate in her drug smuggling case within hours, and Russian prosecutors have made clear they want it to be a harsh one. Prosecutors on Thursday asked a judge to sentence Griner to 9.5 years in prison, just shy of the 10-year maximum,...

This Is the Russian on Offer in Exchange for Britney Griner

Viktor Bout, former Soviet military translator, could pass on intelligence, says pundit

(Newser) - The imprisoned Russian arms dealer the Biden administration has reportedly offered to swap for Russian detainees Brittney Griner and Paul Whelan is known here as the "Merchant of Death." Viktor Bout—who reportedly inspired Nicolas Cage's arms dealer character in 2005's Lord of War—is serving...

US Suggests Trade to Russia for Griner, Whelan

Blinken says he hopes to discuss the deal with Lavrov this week

(Newser) - The Biden administration has settled on a proposal for Russia, offering to trade an imprisoned Russian arms trafficker for Brittney Griner and Paul Whelan. President Biden has agreed to the exchange of detainees, which has been under discussion for months, despite the Justice Department's opposition to such deals, CNN...

Brittney Griner Cites Lack of Translation in Interrogation

She says that much of what was said during her interrogation wasn't translated for her

(Newser) - American basketball star Brittney Griner was back in a Russian court on Wednesday, where she appeared as a witness in her case for the first time. Griner testified about her experience of being arrested at a Moscow airport on Feb. 17 after vape cartridges containing cannabis oil were found in...

Moscow to US: Back Off on Brittney Griner

Official says America must respect Russian drug laws

(Newser) - The US considers WNBA star Brittney Griner to be "wrongfully detained" by Russia. On Thursday, a Russian official scolded the US over that characterization and said America must respect Russia's laws, reports the AP . “If a US citizen was taken in connection with the fact that she...

Griner's Lawyers Show Court a Doctor's Note

In letter, doctor recommended WNBA star use medical cannabis for pain

(Newser) - Brittney Griner's trial resumed in Khimki, Russia, on Friday, and a key defense argument tied her apparent use of vape cartridges to her health. Reuters reports that in the fourth hearing for the WNBA star, her lawyers told the court that Griner had been authorized to use medical cannabis...

Griner Pleads Guilty, Says She Packed in a Rush

WNBA star admits to drug charges in Russian court

(Newser) - Russian news agencies say jailed American basketball star Brittney Griner has pleaded guilty to drug possession and smuggling charges during her trial in Moscow, per the AP . Griner, speaking through an interpreter, told the court she'd acted unintentionally because she was packing in haste. Griner was detained in February...

Biden Calls Brittney Griner's Wife After Her Plea for Help

Reassures Cherelle Griner he's working toward her release

(Newser) - Update: President Biden on Wednesday called Brittney Griner's wife and assured her he's working to free the WNBA star, who remains jailed in Russia and recently wrote to Biden asking for help. VP Kamala Harris also spoke to Cherelle Griner, who has criticized the US handling of her...

As Brittney Griner Trial Starts, Acquittal Looks Like a 'Fantasy'

Some experts think Russian proceedings will be for show only, with a near-certain conviction

(Newser) - The trial of WNBA star Brittney Griner starts Friday in Russia, and the odds don't look good that she'll be set free at its conclusion. The 31-year-old WNBA star, arrested in February at a Moscow airport and accused of having cannabis oil in her bags, has been held...

Handcuffed Brittney Griner Appears in Russian Court

WNBA star's trial is to start July 1 amid speculation of a possible prisoner swap

(Newser) - More than four months after she was arrested at a Moscow airport for alleged cannabis possession, a Russian court set a trial start date of July 1 for US basketball star Brittney Griner. The Phoenix Mercury star was also ordered on Monday to remain in custody for the duration of...

Moscow Extends Griner's Pre-Trial Detention
Russia Extends Detention
of WNBA's Griner

Russia Extends Detention of WNBA's Griner

She will be held at least until July 2

(Newser) - Update: A Russian court has extended the pre-trial detention of WNBA star Brittney Griner until at least July 2, reports CNN , citing Russian state media. The American basketball player has been held since February after vape cartridges with cannabis were allegedly found in her luggage at a Moscow airport. The...

US Changes Status of WNBA Star's Detention

White House deems Brittney Griner wrongfully detained in Russia

(Newser) - The Biden administration has determined that WNBA star Brittney Griner is being wrongfully detained in Russia and will aggressively work to secure her release, two US officials told the AP , speaking on the condition of anonymity. The new classification means her case will be handled by the US Special Presidential...

Two Months After Griner's Arrest in Russia, Few Answers

WNBA star remains detained on drug charges

(Newser) - For another person in another country at another time, the case might have been a minor matter: an American citizen detained at an airport for allegedly possessing a cannabis derivative legal in much of the world. But the circumstances for Brittney Griner couldn’t have been worse, per the AP...

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