WNBA star Brittney Griner has been locked up in a Russian jail since February and right now she’s in sort of a “good news/ bad news” situation. Actually, it’s more like a “bad news that might be good news and good news that definitely comes with some bad” kind of thing—it’s a lot.
Russian state news agency TASS reported two things on Friday.
First, the bad news; a Russian court has extended Griner’s pretrial detention by another month.
According to CNN, TASS reported that a court in Khimki outside Moscow ruled that Griner will remain detained for at least until June 18. In March, her detention was extended to May 19—now we’ve reached May and it’s been extended again until late June. WTF?!
Well, according to Griner’s attorney, Alexander Boikov, the extension might actually indicate a good thing. Boikov told the Associated Press that he believes the short extension means her actual trial will happen soon.
Now for the (maybe?) good news. According to Fox News Digital, a prisoner exchange might be on Griner’s horizon.
Brittney Griner Might Be Eligible For A Prisoner Exchange
The second thing TASS reported is that a source said talks were happening between Russian and U.S. officials about the possibility of trading Griner for international arms dealer Viktor Bout.
The problem there, of course, is Bout ain’t the type of criminal the U.S. is bout to give up easily.
Fox News reports that Bout is in the middle of a 25-year sentence in federal prison after he was convicted of conspiracy to kill Americans relating to the support of a Colombian terrorist organization.
He was dubbed the “Merchant of Death” because of his notoriety for running a fleet of aging Soviet-era cargo planes to conflict-ridden hotspots in Africa. His dealings inspired the Nicolas Cage film “Lord of War.”
A U.S. State Department spokesperson reiterated to Fox News Digital that President Biden has been clear about bringing U.S. nationals who are detained overseas home. The spokesperson added that to have potentially successful outcomes in bringing those people home officials will need to have private discussions.
As long as it took just for State Department to officially declare that Griner has been “wrongly detained,” who knows how long those “private discussions” will take.
Also, let’s just talk about how wild it is that Griner, a Black woman who did nothing more than allegedly possess vape cartridges with hashish oil, might possibly be exchanged for a white man who ran killing machines around the world and conspired to kill people.
If that doesn’t give you a clear understanding of how white privilege works, I’m not sure what will…