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Who is Brittney Griner? American basketball player is sentenced to 9 years in a Russian prison for carrying electronic cigarette cartridges with cannabis oil

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The basketball player, Brittney Griner, star of the WNBA, will have to serve a nine-year sentence in a Russian prison for drug charges and her name is gaining more and more popularity due to the media coverage of the case.

The president of the United States, Joe Biden would have even offered a prisoner exchange to Russia to bring the basketball player to his country, recognized not only for her talent on the courts, but for being the first player to declare herself gay, published BBC.

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Some 77 Ukrainian athletes have died as a result of the Russian invasion

Who is Brittney Griner? American basketball star

Griner, 31, was born in Texas, United States and is 2.06 meters tall and weighs 93 kilos. His men’s shoes are size 17 and his hands are slightly larger than LeBron James’s own.

At the age of 22, he made his debut in the WNBA and, according to what he said in some interviews, had he not shined on the court, he would have been a police officer like his father, whom he considers his role model.

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The star plays for the Phoenix Mercury team, is known as “BG” and is considered the best offensive player in professional women’s basketball in the entire country.

On the other hand, Griner was the first player in the league to dare to publicly say that she is homosexual. Following the announcement, she became the first openly gay male or female athlete to be sponsored by Nike.

Among her achievements, “BG” has two gold medals in the Olympic Games, the title of most valuable player in the American women’s basketball league and championships in the WNBA and the Euroleague.

Sentenced to 9 years in prison on “drug” charges in Russia

The player was arrested at the Moscow airport in February 2022, after a dog from the Russian Federal Customs Service had the authorities inspect her hand luggage, where they found electronic cigarette cartridges with cannabis oil (marijuana), which he assures gave it medicinal use.

Griner was preparing to return to the United States from Moscow, since with the beginning of the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the Euroleague suspended all Russian teams, including the one she belonged to.

It should be noted that Griner plays for the Euroleague team UMMC Ekaterinburg during the offseason in the United States. Like her WNBA teammates, she plays abroad to increase her income, since in Russia she earns five times more than in the United States.

To reduce her sentence, the athlete pleaded guilty to drug-related charges, although she said she did not intend to break any laws. However, the Russian authorities showed no compassion for her and sentenced her to nine years in prison.

Cherelle Watson, wife of the 28-year-old athlete and lawyer, denounced that the Russian authorities deny her consular access and communication with her friends and family during the months she has been in prison.

In addition, the Olympic medalist was fined one million rubles ($16,300) and must serve her sentence in a penal colony.

US President Joe Biden called Griner’s conviction “unacceptable” and demanded his immediate release. Meanwhile, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken reported that the government made a “significant” prisoner exchange offer to Russia to achieve the return of Griner and former Marine Paul Whelan.

The American press noted that the Moscow government was interested in exchanging the basketball star for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout. But the conviction changed plans, and Griner’s attorneys say they will appeal the decision. (YO)

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Source: Eluniverso

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