United States WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association) star Brittney Grinner has been sentenced to serve 9 years in jail by a Russian court on Thursday over a charge of drug possession. United States President Joe Biden expressed his dissatisfaction calling the ruling “unacceptable.”
The two-time Olympic winner and six-time WNBA all star was found guilty of bringing cannabis infused cartridges for vape in Russia by the court. Griner was arrested in February during the WNBA off season after entering the country to play for a Russian team.
The arrest of the Brittney Griner came amid US-Russia tensions over the attack on Ukraine and demands for release of the player have been going on in the United States since. The sentencing of Brittney Griner could lead to a prisoner swap between US and Russia involving the star player and a convicted Russian arm dealer imprisoned in the United States.
US President Joe Biden called on Russia to release Griner and assured that his administration would work to assure her release. Lawyers representing Brittney Griner would also appeal the decision of the court.