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Brittney Griner pre-trial detention extended one month

A Russian court on Friday extended the pre-trial detention on drug charges of US basketball star Brittney Griner, state media reported. Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medallist and WNBA champion, was detained at Moscow airport in February on charges of carrying in her luggage vape cartridges with cannabis oil, which could carry a 10-year prison sentence.

Reuters SPORT
Published May 13,2022
(Rick Scuteri/AP)

Authorities in Russia extended the pretrial detention of Brittney Griner by one month, according to a lawyer representing the seven-time All-Star.

Griner, 31, was arrested in February at an airport near Moscow and is accused of illegally transporting cartridges of hashish oil, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years.

Griner was on her way back to the United States for the start of training camp with the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury. She plays for UMMC Ekaterinburg in Russia during the offseason.

She has played for the team for six seasons and many other WNBA players participate in the league for financial reasons.

A trial is now expected for Griner, her attorneys said, but U..S officials have classified her arrest as "wrongful detainment."

The label from President Joe Biden implies the government considers the detention to be based solely on being a United States national.