Appeal denied for Brittney Griner in Russia

Brittney Griner, Russia, WNBA, Phoenix Mercury, appeal

Unfortunately, Brittney Griner’s appeal to not serve nine years in Russia was denied this morning. Griner was sentenced back in August for drug charges. U.S. and international officials continue to state the Phoenix Mercury star is being wrongfully detained. While her fellow WNBA teammates and colleagues are calling for her release, U.S. officials believe she will be released via a prisoner swap with Russia.

“We are aware of the news out of Russia that Brittney Griner will continue to be wrongfully detained under intolerable circumstances after having to undergo another sham judicial proceeding today,” shared U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan in a statement today.

Griner attended the court hearing today via videoconference. During court, it was stated the time she has been in there will count toward her overall sentence.

“The verdict contains numerous defects and we hoped that the court of appeal would take them into consideration,” expressed her attorneys Maria Blagovolina and Alexander Boykov. “We still think the punishment is excessive and contradicts to the existing court practice.”

“This appeal is further verification that BG is not just wrongfully detained,” the WNBA Players Association said in a release. “She is very clearly a hostage.”

As of now, Griner has been serving her time in safer Moscow jail, but she is expected to be transferred to one of Russia’s notorious penal colonies.