The two-time US Olympic basketball gold medalist Brittney Griner went on trial at a court near Moscow on Friday, on drug smuggling charges which can be punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
Griner, 31, a Phoenix Mercury player who plays in Russia during the WNBA’s off season, was arrested February 17 at a Moscow airport, a week before Russia invaded Ukraine.
At the trial, Griner was accused by a prosecutor of smuggling less than a gram of cannabis oil in her luggage.
Being sufficiently aware that the movement of narcotic drugs is not allowed… no later than February 17, 2022 at an unspecified location under unspecified circumstances from an unidentified person [Griner] bought two cartridges for personal use, which contained 0.252 grams and 0.45 grams of hash oil, totaling 0.702 grams,” the prosecutor said, according to a TASS reporter in the hall of the Khimki City Court.
The prosecution argues that Griner intended to import the drugs into Russia’s territory and put the prohibited substances into a backpack and a suitcase, according to TASS. Cannabis oil is subject to control in Russia and is classified as a narcotic drug.