- 1440 Daily Digest
Griner Returns To United States
WNBA basketball star Brittney Griner arrived back in the US after being released yesterday from Russian detention in exchange for notorious Russian arms trafficker Viktor Bout.
Griner was serving a nine-year sentence in a Russian penal colony after being caught with cannabis oil in her luggage in February. Bout, known as the “Merchant of Death,” had served 10 years of a 25-year sentence for conspiracy to support terrorist organizations—he attempted to supply missiles and rocket launchers to the Colombian rebel group FARC.
Former US Marine Paul Whelan, who has been detained in Russia since 2018, was not included in the swap and remains one of the few known Americans imprisoned in the country. It is believed Russia is holding Whelan’s release to a higher standard due to his espionage charges, which the US government has said are baseless.
Griner is being treated at a medical facility in San Antonio, Texas.