WNBA star Brittney Griner has pleaded guilty drug charges in a Russian court.
The two-time US Olympic basketball gold medalist told the court on Thursday that she did not mean to commit a crime, according to stage news agency RIA Novosti.
‘I would like to plead guilty on the charges against me, but I had no intention on breaking any Russian law,’ Griner said in court, speaking through an interpreter. ‘I was in a rush packing and the cartridges accidentally ended up in my bags.’
A Russian judge ordered Griner to remain in custody.
Griner left the courtroom without commenting to reporters.
She was arrested at a Moscow airport in February after Russian officials said they found two cannabis oil cartridges in her luggage. Griner has since been held on drug smuggling charges and could face up to 10 years in prison.
Griner requested time to prepare for her testimony. Her next court date is set for July 14.
She plead guilty three days after sending a hand-written letter to President Joe Biden, pleading him to help her.
‘I voted for the first time in 2020 and I voted for you. I believe in you. As I sit here in a Russian prison, alone with my thoughts and without the protection of my wife, family, friends, Olympic jersey, or any accomplishments, I’m terrified I might be here forever,’ wrote the Phoenix Mercury player.
On Wednesday, , Cherelle Griner, about the efforts the administration is taking to get her released.
‘The President called Cherelle to reassure her that he is working to secure Brittney’s release as soon as possible,’ stated the White House.
‘The President offered his support to Cherelle and Brittney’s family, and he committed to ensuring they are provided with all possible assistance while his administration pursues every avenue to bring Brittney home.’
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