Brittney Griner: Russian trial of American basketball star begins
Griner, 31, a Phoenix Mercury player who plays in Russia during the WNBA’s offseason, was arrested February 17 at a Moscow airport.
Russian authorities accused her of smuggling significant amounts of a narcotic substance, an offense punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
Griner is currently being kept at a pre-trial detention center north of Moscow. Her detention has been extended for six months pending the trial’s outcome, according to her lawyer.
Earlier this week, US national security adviser Jake Sullivan reiterated that Griner is “wrongfully detained, unjustly detained and we have made that clear as an official determination of the US government.”
No verdict is expected on the first day of her trial, which is taking place at the Khimki city court, outside the Russian capital.