Aug 2, 2022 - World

Brittney Griner's defense argues vape examination violated Russian law

WNBA superstar Brittney Griner is seen before a hearing in Russia on July 27, 2022. Photo: Alexander Zemlianichenko / POOL / AFP via Getty Images
Brittney Griner in a cell in Moscow. Photo: Alexander Zemlianichenko/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

WNBA star Brittney Griner was back in a Russian court Tuesday for her drug trial while the U.S. attempts to have her released from the country.

Driving the news: Defense experts argued that the examination of the substance inside the vape cartridges Griner had did not comply with Russian law, CNN reports.

  • Griner's lawyer argued the results of the examination do not show the amount of THC in the substance, among other violations.
  • Tuesday's court appearance was Griner's seventh hearing since she was arrested at a Moscow airport in February after Russian authorities said they found a vape cartridge with less than 1 gram of hashish oil in her luggage.

Background: Griner, 31, pleaded guilty last month to the drug charges, but said she had "no intent" of bringing the vape cartridges to Russia.

  • Griner's lawyers told the court that doctors in the U.S. prescribed Griner medical cannabis for chronic pain two years ago.
  • Griner, testified last week that her rights were not read to her when she was arrested, and she was was instructed to sign documents without understanding what they meant.
  • The drug charged carry a sentence of up to 10 years in prison.

The big picture: The U.S. maintains that Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medalist who plays in Russia during the WNBA offseason, is wrongfully being detained.

  • Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced last week that the U.S. made a "substantial proposal" to Russia to have Griner released.

What's next: The trial is scheduled to resume Thursday for closing statements.

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