Brittney Griner Phoenix Mercury Russia city Moscow sports World Brittney Griner Phoenix Mercury Russia city Moscow

Brittney Griner's Defense Says WNBA Star Had Cannabis Prescription

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Above: Brittney Griner being placed in the defendant's cage in a Russian court FridayBasketball star Brittney Griner’s trial on drug charges in Russia continued this week with her defense presenting medical and character evidence.Griner has pleaded guilty to possessing vape cartridges containing cannabis oil, which is illegal in Russia, but her lawyers are bringing forth evidence that they hope will result in a lighter sentence than the 10-year maximum possible under Russian law, CNN reports.Griner, 31, center for the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury, was arrested in February at an airport near Moscow.

She was planning to play for a Russian team, UMMC Ekaterinburg, during the WNBA’s off-season. Many WNBA athletes play for overseas teams in the off-season to supplement their income.In court Friday, Griner’s lawyers presented a permit showing she was prescribed cannabis for medical purposes — as a treatment for chronic pain.

Griner has also said she packed the vape cartridges by accident. In a session Thursday, Evgeniya Belyakova, captain of UMMC Ekaterinburg, and Maksim Ryabkov, the team’s director, testified as character witnesses for Griner.

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