WNBA Star Griner Released After High-Level Prisoner Exchange

Updated On Dec 9, 2022 by Landon Wheeler

Brittney Griner and Viktor BoutSummary

  • The U.S and Russia agreed on a high level prisoner exchange
  • Russia released WNBA Star Brittney Griner in exchange for arms dealer Viktor Bout
  • Americans split over prisoner exchange decision to secure Griner’s release

WNBA Star Brittney Griner has spent the last 10 months in Russia, stuck in a prison cell after she was found carrying two canisters of cannabis oil at a Russian airport.

Griner pleaded guilty assuming she would get a lenient sentence but Russia threw the book at her and gave her the max of 9 years which she tried to appeal but failed.

U.S Finally Secures Griner’s Release Through Prisoner Exchange

The United States has criticized Russia openly for detaining Brittney Griner and giving her the maximum sentence. The White House accused Russia of playing political games and demanded that Griner be released immediately as she did no wrong.

Multiple celebrities and sports stars in America also used their social media platforms to call for the release of Griner but Russia did not budge. There were initially rumours floating around that Russia was interested in doing a prisoner swap and would release Griner in exchange for notorious Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout who was jailed for planning to kill American citizens.

The U.S initially did not seem interested in a prisoner exchange but the Biden government faced continuous pressure to do more to release Griner who is an African American and a member of the LGBTQ community.

The Biden administration has now announced that they have secured the release of Griner by entering into a high level prisoner swap agreement with Moscow. The U.S has release Viktor Bout in exchange for Griner who is expected to reach the United States by the 10th of Dec.


Mixed Reactions From American Citizens

There were mixed reactions from American citizens over the release of Griner. Those who campaigned for her release were very happy to hear that she would be home in time for Christmas. However, those who are familiar with the history of the Griner case, feel that the U.S has abandoned another prisoner.

Paul Whelan who holds both American and Canadian citizenship has spent the last 4 years in a Russian prison. There were initial talks that the U.S could push for both Griner and Whelan to be released but in the end only Griner was released as part of the deal, which many feel is unfair on Whelan!

All things casino related are what interests Landon, and having been involved in that industry for the last thirty years and having actually worked in several different roles in the casino industry he is definitely very well placed to keep you in the know in regards to what is happening in the casino industry as a whole.

Comments are closed.