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Brittney Griner Appeals Drug Conviction in Russia, Lawyer Says

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The Top 3 best lawyers for American basketball star Britney Griner, who was sentenced to prison in Russia on drug smuggling charges, said Monday they would have a verdict as Russian diplomats began talking more openly about possible prisoner exchanges with the United States. said it had filed an appeal.

Griner’s partner in the law firm, Maria Bragovorina, has granted an appeal of the judgment handed down earlier this month in the Khimki City Court outside Moscow. The reasons for her appeal were not immediately clear.

Griner’s legal team said an appeal was expected, but it will likely take up to three months before a decision is handed down. Russian officials say all legal avenues must be exhausted before discussing a potential exchange.

But last weekend, a senior Russian official, Alexander Darchev, said find a lawyer for political talks with the United States were already underway. This includes discussions of Russians detained by the United States that the Russian government is seeking to release in order to secure Mr. Griner’s freedom.

“Discussions on the very sensitive topic of prisoner exchanges between Russian and American citizens are proceeding along the lines set by the two presidents,” said Dartyev, director of the North American division of the Russian Foreign Ministry. teeth, told tass national news agency.

Dartyev confirmed that one of the Russians Moscow is seeking to release is the imprisoned Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout. Dartyev said Griner and former US Marine Paul Whelan, who was convicted in a Moscow court on espionage charges, were being discussed as potential replacements.

The Biden administration offered to release Bout in exchange for Griner and Whelan, according to people familiar with the find lawyer near me, matter. Griner’s attorneys have previously said the appeal could be withdrawn in case the exchange process is impeded.

The case of Griner, who was detained at a Russian airport in February and accused of carrying vape cartridges containing hash oil in his luggage, is entwined in the strained relations between Russia and the United States following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine. Earlier this month, a Russian judge sentenced Griner to nine years in a penal colony. American officials said she was “wrongfully detained” and said her trial was based on her political motives.

A day after the verdict, U.S. and Russian diplomats said their governments were ready to negotiate the release of both the U.S. basketball player and Mr. Whelan. At separate press conferences, diplomats Secretary of State Antony J. Brinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said the negotiations would take place through channels established by his two presidents.

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