On August 4, the whole world followed the news from Khimki. At some point, this city near Moscow again became the center of attraction for basketball attention. Although there was not much basketball in the local city court. Two-time Olympic champion Brittney Greiner has been in jail since February and probably already perfectly learned the way to court, where she was taken with enviable regularity.

Her business grew like a snowball rolling down a huge slope. For several weeks after the arrest at Sheremetyevo Airport, no one really could understand what was happening. But the basketball community in the United States once again showed its strength by reaching out to President Joe Biden with their statements.

It was after Biden’s official permission for the exchange of Greiner that active operations began. Representatives of the State Department began to communicate with colleagues from the Russian Foreign Ministry, contact with whom was almost lost.

The American side made no secret of the fact that they did not understand such a serious consideration of the case. This caused misunderstanding on the Russian side, which insisted that any negotiations on the exchange could only begin after an official decision had been made by the court.



Exchange between the US and Russia.  America has begun to act, but it is too early to rejoice at Greiner
Exchange between the US and Russia. America has begun to act, but it is too early to rejoice at Greiner

A few days before the verdict was announced, the details of Griner’s detention in the pre-trial detention center and the course of the trial became public. So, during one of the meetings, a serious dispute arose between a person who performed laboratory studies of a prohibited substance and a chemist called by the defense side. According to sources, the first one did not look very convincing, which caused discontent among opponents.

Also in the isolation room, for the convenience of one of the best basketball players on the planet, two beds were connected by welding them to each other. In general, Greiner’s height was a serious hindrance for the athlete. Once, the judge even had to allow an American woman to testify while sitting, because with a height of 206 cm, she could not stand up to her full height.

The number of media representatives at the announcement of the verdict underlined the degree of attention to the case on both sides of the ocean. Greiner did not smile, carefully looking at the judge, whom she addressed in her speech with a request not to break her life. The interpreter worked non-stop, trying to translate as many words as possible from the judge’s quick speech.




“Why should we call her a hostage?” The Greiner case reached the Kremlin

As a result, Griner received nine years in prison and a fine of 1 million rubles. And it was after this that the world was divided into two parts.

The first group was surprised by the harshness of the punishment. Lawyers immediately said they would appeal, and Joe Biden called the verdict “unacceptable.” The President of the United States was supported by Greiner’s partners in the basketball team and the NBA.

The Russian side in their speeches mainly pointed out that the court followed the letter of the law and if Greiner came to our country without prohibited substances, she could easily play and receive one of the largest salaries in women’s basketball.

Surprisingly, handball coach Yevgeny Trefilov spoke almost brightest in the Greiner case.

“I don’t know about drugs. Greiner is said to have used drugs for medical purposes. If cocaine can be smeared on the knee, then let’s do it. But we do not do this, we have drugs prohibited. Let them think about it when they import something into Russia. The shores are completely confused! It’s a shame that I got a sports girl, interesting, two-meter, mobile, ”said the legendary coach.

But at some point in the United States, they also started talking about the fairness of punishment for drug trafficking. The main critics of Joe Biden were former US President Donald Trump and one of the richest people on the planet, Elon Musk.

Brittney Greiner

Brittney Greiner

Photo: RIA Novosti

“She came to a place where drugs are vigilant, loaded with them. She was caught. She admitted it. I understand that she admitted it without too much pressure, because it is what it is. Swapping her for an arms dealer who is involved in killing people doesn’t look like a very good deal, does it?” Trump asked.

“If the president is working so hard to get someone out of Russia for drugs, why don’t we release people in America who are incarcerated for the same reasons?” Musk said.

Society split into two camps. Even a survey on the Championship website showed that those who consider the sentence too harsh and those who are confident in the justice of the punishment are approximately equal in number.

If you do not see the survey, then you can go through the link.

Surprisingly, the day after Greiner’s indictment, NBA champion Iman Shumpert was detained in Dallas. Marijuana was found in the former player’s bag. True, the weight of the seized substance was 173 grams, while Greiner’s vape oil contained 0.7 grams. Shumpert, by the way, also faces a prison term, but even if he gets it, he will spend a maximum of two years behind bars.

The negotiation process between the countries will be delayed. The United States tried to do everything quickly, but already the first negotiations made it clear that the Russian side would not change according to the Greiner + Whelan = Booth system. Washington emphasizes in every possible way that such a proposal is mutually beneficial, but the Russian Foreign Ministry does not seem to think so.

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