Brittney Griner’s latest day in court may have turned things around.
The WNBA star testified to how she’s been treated by law enforcement since arriving in Russia back in February, and she didn’t paint the prettiest picture. Griner mentioned that her rights were not read to her when she was arrested at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport.
She also said that after her luggage was searched and her vape cartridges containing hashish oil were confiscated–which she used after being recommended by a doctor to treat the aches of a pro athlete– she was instructed to sign documents without knowing what they meant. The translator that was supposed to aid her in understanding the documents wasn’t much help.
“I remember one time there was a stack of papers that [the translator] needed to translate for me. He took a brief look and then said the exact words were, ‘Basically you are guilty,’” she said, according to Axios.
As she previously mentioned, Griner stated that despite using the doctor-recommended hashish oil, she didn’t intend to put it in her luggage.
“I still don’t understand how they ended up in my bag,” Griner said, per the Washington Post. “I had no intention to break the law.” She blamed it on the craziness of throwing stuff in her luggage, saying she was “rushed packing and stressed packing… I was in a huge hurry.”
Earlier this month, the 31-year-old pleaded guilty to the charges amid an era of high tension between the United States and Russia. As a result, she’s been imprisoned for over five months despite committing such a low-level offense, signaling that she may be a political prisoner.
The Biden administration has been attempting to get her home safely with the idea of swapping her for the much more dangerous Viktor Bout, a Russian arms dealer who was found guilty of conspiring to sell weapons to a terrorist organization in 2011.
Griner faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted on drug charges.