MOSCOW (AP) — The lawyer for WNBA star Brittney Griner said Friday her pre-trial detention in Russia has been extended by one month.
Alexander Boykov told The Associated Press he believed the relatively short extension of the detention indicated the case would come to trial soon. She has been in detention for nearly three months.
She appeared for the brief hearing handcuffed, her dreadlocks covered in a red hoodie and her face held low.
Boykov said “We did not receive any complaints about the detention conditions from our client.”
Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medalist, was detained at a Moscow airport after vape cartridges containing oil derived from cannabis were allegedly found in her luggage, which could carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.
The Biden administration says Griner, 31, is being wrongfully detained. The WNBA and U. S. officials have worked toward her release, without visible progress.
The Russians have described Griner’s case as a criminal offense without making any political associations.
But it comes amid Moscow’s war in Ukraine that has brought U. S.-Russian relations to the lowest level since the Cold War.
Despite the strain, Russia and the United States carried out an unexpected prisoner exchange last month — trading ex-marine Trevor Reed for Konstantin Yaroshenko, a Russian pilot serving a 20-year federal sentence for conspiring to smuggle cocaine into the U. S. While the U…. (Read more)