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Russian court denies Brittney Griner’s appeal

Brittney Griner appeal denied

The ongoing saga of WNBA star turned Russian-captive, Brittney Griner has taken another turn recently, as she had a hearing for the nine-year prison sentence she was dealt recently. The hearing, which saw the 32-year-old American Gold Medalist appear by way of a videoconferencing setup from her prison cell, saw her sentence be upheld by the judge overseeing her case. 

Even though the outcome wasn’t surprising to her legal team, Griner is now stuck with limited options regarding ways she could potentially avoid serving the entire sentence. It’s still not clear as to whether or not she has any more options that would allow her to get out of the prison sentence. The sentence was handed down to the Phoenix Mercury star after Griner pled guilty to a drug possession charge. 

Brittney Griner live hearing

Brittney Griner live hearing

Still, she insisted that they packed the cannabis cartridges she was charged with having inadvertently. “This has been a very traumatic experience, waiting for this day, waiting for this court, and getting nine years for a crime that I was barely over the significant amount,” Griner said during her hearing. “I really hope that the court will adjust this sentence, because it’s been very, very stressful and very traumatic to my mental and psyche, being away from my family and not being able to communicate,” she continued.

At this point, Griner’s best hope for a swift return to the United States may be intervention from President Joe Biden in the form of a prisoner swap. In a statement issued by U.S. National Security Advisor, Jake Sullivan, President Joe Biden is “willing to go to extraordinary lengths and make tough decisions to bring Americans home.” 

Hopefully, updates like that are capable of helping Griner maintain healthy spirits as she awaits an ending to this nightmare scenario.

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