It has been questioned whether American women’s basketball star Brittney Griner is being used as a pawn in Russia’s conflict with Ukraine after she was found guilty of knowingly bring in drugs into the country and given a 9 years prisonment on Thursday.
The Khimki City Court’s Judge Anna Sotnikova given down the ruling and penalized Griner one million rubles, or roughly $16,400. She stated that the court measured Griner’s limited reply of guilt or feel sorry for the act, state of health, and humanitarian endeavours. She should have received a 9.5-year prison period, as per the prosecution.
In a demonstrative speech before the verdict, Griner voiced regret to the jury and pled for mercy. Griner declared, I never intended to damage anyone, jeopardise the Russian people, or violate any local laws. I made a sincere error, and I really hope that your verdict won’t end my presence here.
I know that politics and political pawns are often brought up, but I really hope that is not the case in this trial. I’ll reiterate that I had no intention of violating any Russian laws. I didn’t mean to. I didn’t plan or collaborate to do this crime, she said.
Who Has Charged For Dismissing The Evidence
The 31-year-old was caught at a Moscow airport and charged by Russian prosecutors with attempting to smuggle less than 1 grams of cannabis oil in her luggage. The verdict was reduced approximately after six months later. The two-time US Olympic basketball gold champion admitted to using drugs last month and claimed that while rushing, she unintentionally packed the medications.
The ruling will be appealed, according to Griner’s attorneys Maria Blagovolina and Alexander Boykov, who also blasted the court for dismissing their evidence. Ten days are given for an appeal.
The verdict has left us feeling quite sad. As lawyers always think that regardless of nationality, the court should have treat fairly. They said in the statement that the court had entirely disregarded all of the defence witnesses and, most crucially, their guilty plea. “This is against accepted legal doctrine.
The verdict is completely irrational when you consider the volume of the evidence (as well as the deficiencies of the competence) and the plea. Without a doubt, we’ll appeal. Speaking outside of court, Boykov stated that approximately a third of those convicted receive parole and that the typical sentence for this kind of crime is five years in prison.
Blagovolina, a partner at the law firm Rybalkin, Gortsunyan, Dyakin and Partners, stated that Griner “is not doing good today.” Griner’s family will hopefully be able to speak with her next week, according to the defence team.
Why Sentence Is Delivered Amid Tight US-Russian Ties
The severe punishment is given in light of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and its saber-rattling with the United States and Europe. In an effort to securely return Griner home, US officials have proposed a prospective prisoner swap with Russia. The US State Department contends that Griner is being held against her will.
Both US President Joe Biden and Charge d’Affaires of the US Embassy in Russia, Elizabeth Rood, called the punishment a “miscarriage of justice” and “unacceptable.”
Brittney Griner is an American citizen was sentenced to prison today, which serves as another reminder of what everyone already knew. The Brittney was being imprisoned unlawfully by Russia. It’s outrageous, and I demand that Russia free her right away so she may be with her spouse and other family members, friends, and teammates “In a statement, Biden stated.
The punishment puts a limelight on our generous concerns with Russia’s legal system and the Russian government’s misuse of illegal custodies to attain its own agenda, utilising people as political pawns.
How Guilty Verdict Found Unacceptable
He stated that efforts are being made by the US to return Griner and Paul Whelan, an American citizen who has been detained by Russia since 2018 on suspicion of espionage. According to Blinken and the Department, this is a top priority.
According to National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby, it’s now “up to the Russian side” to decide if Griner’s conviction opens up fresh opportunities for discussions of a prisoner swap.
In the White House briefing on Thursday, Kirby told reporters, “We’re still open to having our proposal carefully and positively reviewed, and if on the Russian side it means they feel like they’re more empowered to do that, then so be it.
The US continues to want Russia to accept the deal on the table because it’s a good one, it’s fair one, and it’ll help get Paul and Brittney home, Kirby said in a statement. The hefty penalty, according to CNN National Security Analyst Steve Hall, was not unexpected, and he contended that the court proceedings in Russia were invalid.
All of this is a Russian performance. There was never any question as to what would occur and Mr. Vladimir Putin is essentially attempting to make Ms. Griner more valuable in negotiations.
What Was Griner Doing In Russia?
It has been questioned whether American women’s basketball star Brittney Griner is being used as a pawn in Russia’s conflict with Ukraine after she was found guilty of knowingly importing drugs in Russia and given 9 years’ prison punishment on Thursday.
Why Britney Griner Detained in Russia?
WNBA player Brittney Griner was found guilty of drug charges by a Moscow court on Thursday, and she was given a 9-year prison term in Russia.
Brittney Griner Had How Much Oil In Russia?
Griner’s court appearance in Khimki was her eighth hearing since Russian authorities claim that she tried to sneak less than 1 gramme of cannabis oil into the country in her luggage.