Russia Says It Has American Basketball Player in Custody – awsforwp


The Russian Federal Customs Service said Saturday that its officials had detained an American basketball player after finding vape cartridges that contained hashish oil in her luggage at the Sheremetyevo airport near Moscow.

The Customs Service said in a statement that the player had won two Olympic gold medals with the United States, but it did not release the player’s name. The Russian news agency TASS, citing a law enforcement source, identified the player as Brittney Griner, a seven-time WNBA All-Star center for the Phoenix Mercury. Griner, 31, won gold medals with the US women’s national basketball team in 2021 and 2016.

The Customs Service released a video of a traveler at the airport who appeared to be Griner, wearing a mask and black sweatshirt, going through security. The video showed an individual removing a package from the traveler’s bag.

According to the statement, a criminal case has been opened into the large-scale transportation of drugs, which can carry a sentence of up to 10 years behind bars in Russia. The basketball player was taken into custody while the investigation was ongoing, officials said.