Basketball: WNBA star Brittney Griner ‘OK’ as Russian court extends her detention


MOSCOW (NYT) – A Russian court prolonged the detention of WNBA star Brittney Griner by two months on Thursday (March 17), and denied an enchantment from her authorized staff, who had hoped to have her transferred to deal with arrest.

Griner, 31, has been held in Russia since mid-February on drug fees that might carry a sentence of as much as 10 years if she is convicted.

Griner is “OK” and has seen her Russian authorized staff a number of occasions per week whereas she has been in custody, in response to an individual with data of the state of affairs who requested to not be recognized publicly due to the sensitivity of the matter.

The Russian Federal Customs Service stated on March 5 that its officers had detained an American basketball participant, who was later recognized as Griner.

Customs officers accused Griner of getting vape cartridges containing cannabis oil in her baggage on the Sheremetyevo airport close to Moscow.

On Thursday, the Russian information company Tass reported that Griner’s detention had been prolonged to May 19 throughout a listening to.

Griner’s authorized staff in Russia had hoped to have her transferred to deal with arrest on the listening to, however weren’t stunned that the enchantment of her detention was denied, in response to the particular person with data of the state of affairs.

The investigation into the fees is ongoing, and it’s typical for a Russian court so as to add time to the detention till a trial date – if one is critical – is ready, in response to the particular person.

Thursday’s listening to didn’t take care of the advantage of the fees, the particular person stated.

The WNBA season begins May 6. Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medallist and a seven-time All-Star for the Phoenix Mercury, is without doubt one of the recreation’s most distinguished stars.

She is being held at a time of more and more tense relations between the United States and Russia after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine final month.

U.S. officers have repeatedly accused Russia of detaining and sentencing U.S. residents for doubtful causes.

The continued detention of a high-profile American might even be an effort by Russia to achieve leverage within the political and financial standoff with Washington over the invasion, specialists say.

Tass reported that Griner had not been visited by U.S. consular officers, regardless of Russia’s willingness to facilitate a gathering.

But final week, American politician Colin Allred advised The New York Times that Griner had been denied consular entry by Russian officers.

“It’s already a violation of international norms and the way these things are handled when they happen to Americans abroad,” Allred stated final week.

Griner is among the many many WNBA gamers who compete internationally to complement their American salaries, and she or he has performed for the Russian staff, UMMC Ekaterinburg, for a number of years.

Those near Griner have stated little publicly in regards to the detention because it grew to become broadly recognized on March 5, doubtless hoping to rearrange for her return via quiet diplomacy.

On Wednesday, Hillary Rodham Clinton, the previous secretary of state, joined an rising variety of politicians and public figures who’ve proven assist for Griner when she tweeted “Free Brittney” with a hyperlink to a BBC article about Griner.

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