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WNBA star Britney Griner appeared in court She began her trial outside Moscow on Friday, four months after she was arrested in Russia on charges of possession of a banned substance.

Russian prosecutors Revealed their case against GrinerAccording to Russian news agency TASS, she was allegedly in possession of two cartridges containing 0.702 grams of cannabis oil when she was detained at Sheremetyevo airport on February 17 with the intention of smuggling “narcotics”.

US WNBA basketball superstar Brittney Griner (C) arrives for a hearing at a Khimki court outside Moscow on July 1, 2022.  - Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and WNBA champion, was detained at a Moscow airport in February.  Her luggage was carrying vape cartridges with cannabis oil, which carries a 10-year sentence.

US WNBA basketball superstar Brittney Griner (C) arrives for a hearing at a Khimki court outside Moscow on July 1, 2022. – Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and WNBA champion, was detained at a Moscow airport in February. Her luggage was carrying vape cartridges with cannabis oil, which carries a 10-year sentence.
(Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP via Getty Images)

“Knowing that it is prohibited to carry narcotics in the Eurasian Economic Union, she purchased two cartridges containing 0.252 and 0.45 grams of cannabis oil, or a total of 0.702 grams, from an unknown person for personal use. Circumstances unknown but no later than February 17, 2022,” the prosecutor stated.

Britney Griner detained: WNBA superstar ‘Sham Trial’ leads Russian court system under the microscope

Griner, who faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted, was led into court wearing a Jimi Hendrix T-shirt. she Said with a Reuters reporter She appeared in court as struggling with detention due to language barrier.

During the hearing on Friday, she did not register her petition and the judge adjourned the hearing to July 7.

US WNBA basketball superstar Britney Griner appeared in Khimki Court on July 1, 2022, outside Moscow.  - Griner, a two - time Olympic gold medalist and WNBA champion, was arrested in February on charges of taking her to a Moscow airport.  Luggage vapor cartridges with marijuana oil, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

US WNBA basketball superstar Brittney Griner arrives for a hearing on July 1, 2022 in a Khimki court outside Moscow. – Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and WNBA champion, was detained at a Moscow airport in February on charges that she was groped. Stuffing vape cartridges with cannabis oil carries a 10-year prison sentence.
(Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP via Getty Images)

Elizabeth Rudd, the US charge d’Affaires in Moscow, was in court and told Griner that she was “acting as expected in these difficult circumstances.”

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“The Russian Federation has Britney Griner was wrongly detained,” Rudd said. “False detention is unacceptable wherever it occurs and is a threat to the safety of everyone who travels, works and lives abroad.”

A Kremlin official on Friday denied US reports that Griner’s arrest was “politically motivated”.

“The facts are that a famous athlete was caught with illicit compounds containing drugs. Russian law actually has provisions for punishing such crimes,” the official said through TASS.

File - Phoenix Mercury Center Britney Griner (42) appears to have defended Chicago Sky Center Candace Parker in the first half of Game 1 of the WNBA Basketball Finals on Sunday, October 10, 2021 in Phoenix.

FILE – PHOENIX Mercury center Brittney Griner (42) looks to be defended by Chicago Sky center Candace Parker during the first half of Game 1 of the WNBA basketball finals, Sunday, Oct. 10, 2021, in Phoenix.
(AP photo / Ralph Freso, file)

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Russian news outlets have repeatedly speculated that Griner could be replaced by Victor Bout, a Russian arms dealer nicknamed “Merchant of Death” who is serving a 25-year prison sentence on charges of plotting to assassinate U.S. citizens and aiding a terrorist organization. .

Griner’s arrest came a week before Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine, but news of her detention did not spread until March. She faces a court system with an acquittal rate of less than 1%.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.