Texas-Bred Pro Basketball Star Brittney Griner Arrested In Russia
With the world on edge over the current situation between the Ukraine and Russia, a Texas-bred pro basketball star is reportedly in big trouble in Russia after reports are coming out that she was detained on alleged drug charges.
WNBA star Brittney Griner was arrested in Russia on drug charges at an Russian airport.
According to multiple reports from NBC News, Griner, originally from Houston, who has won two Olympic gold medals with the U.S., a WNBA championship with the Mercury, and a national championship at Baylor, after a search of her luggage allegedly found vape cartridges containing oil derived from cannabis.
Griner was detained by the Russian Federal Customs Service
Russian officials report that they are investigating Griner's case as a "drug smuggling operation" which could carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. According to a report from the New York Times, its believed that Griner has been in Russian custody for several days now because the screening at the airport took place in February.
Why Was She In Russia During These Difficult Times?
During the WNBA offseason, many of the league's star spend their winters playing for teams overseas including Russia where salaries are more lucrative. Griner has played for the Russian team UMMC Ekaterinburg for several years. Griner continued to play in Russia despite other WNBA players leaving the country.
Griner's Arrest Could Be A Political Move
With tensions running at an high, its believed that an arrest of a "high profile American" on trumped up charges could be seen as a "leverage" move by Russia to get the U.S. to ease sanctions or "swap" prisoners.