A Russian court has rejected an appeal from US basketball star Brittney Griner of her nine-year prison term on drug charges, ignoring her plea for the “traumatic” sentence to be reduced.
The court in Krasnogorsk near Moscow ruled to leave Griner’s August verdict “without change” in the case that came amid fierce tensions between Moscow and Washington over Russia’s military offensive in Ukraine.
US President Joe Biden’s administration dismissed the ruling as “another sham judicial proceeding” that will keep Griner “wrongfully detained under intolerable circumstances” and vowed to continue pressing for her release.
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“The President has demonstrated that he is willing to go to extraordinary lengths and make tough decisions to bring Americans home,” US National Security advisor Jake Sullivan said in a statement.