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US Basketball Star Brittney Griner Has Been Detained In Russia

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📷 SPLASHNEWS/UNCRAZED COMPOSITE

United States basketball player Brittney Griner has been detained in Russia.

The 31-year-old spends her offseason playing for Russian side UMMC Ekaterinburg.

Griner was detained at Sheremetyevo Airport after a dog from the customs canine department detected “the possible presence of narcotic substances”, according to CNN.

The statement reports that the substance found was determined to be cannabis oil (hash oil).

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“We are aware of the situation with Brittney Griner in Russia and are in close contact with her, her legal representation in Russia, her family, her teams and the W.N.B.A. and N.B.A.,” said Griner’s agent, Lindsay Kagawa Colas.

According to CNN, the location of Griner since her arrest is still uncertain.

Tensions between the US and Russia are currently high, given the latter’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

As a result, a member of the US House Armed Services Committee told CNN that “it’s going to be very difficult” to get Griner out of Russia.

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“Our diplomatic relationships with Russia are nonexistent at the moment,” said Democratic rep. John Garamendi. “Perhaps during the various negotiations that may take place, she might be able to be one of the solutions. I don’t know.”

A current petition on Change.org has rallied over 34,000 signatures for Griner’s ‘swift and safe’ return to the US.

Griner’s wife, Cherelle, thanked those who reached out for their prayers and support.

“There are no words to express this pain,” she wrote on Instagram. “I’m hurting, we’re hurting. We await the day to love on you as a family.”

Griner’s fate remains unknown, but could potentially face a jail sentence of up to ten years if found guilty of transporting narcotics.

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