After weeks of trial for drug smuggling charges in Russia, the court announced today Brittney Griner has been found guilty. With the guilty verdict, Griner has been sentenced to nine and a half years in prison. Along with the sentence, she has also be fined 1,000,000 Russian rubles which is equlivant to $16,129.04.
“Today, American citizen Brittney Griner received a prison sentence that is one more reminder of what the world already knew: Russia is wrongfully detaining Brittney,” President Biden said after the verdict was announced. “It’s unacceptable, and I call on Russia to release her immediately so she can be with her wife, loved ones, friends, and teammates.”
Judge Anna Sotnikova stated during the trial she felt Griner intentionally broke the law while Griner testified it was an honest mistake to bring the vape in her suitcase considering she had a doctor’s note for the usage of the marijuana for her pain stemming from injuries.
Furthermore, Judge Sotnikova did state the time Griner has already served — since her arrest in February — does count toward her sentencing time.
Per reports, Griner needed to be sentenced before Russia even considered a prisoner swap with the U.S. The U.S already has reached out for a prisoner swap which includes another American who is also in prison in Russia.