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Brittney Griner Pleads Guilty in Russian Court to Drug Charges, per Report

Brittney Griner pleaded guilty in a Russian court to drug charges Thursday, according to Reuters. The penalty for such charges could lead to 10 years in prison.

“I’d like to plead guilty, your honor. But there was no intent. I didn't want to break the law,” Griner reportedly said in English at the court, according to Reuters. “I’d like to give my testimony later. I need time to prepare.”

Her trial began last Friday, and she is next due in court July 14. She must remain in custody for the remainder of the trial.

Griner has been detained in Russia since Feb. 17 after she was taken into custody at an airport near Moscow for allegedly carrying vape cartridges with hashish oil in her luggage. Her detention was extended late last month until Dec. 20.

According to ESPN’s T.J. Quinn, Griner has argued the incident was an accident, and she had no intention of breaking the law.

Quinn also said Griner pleading guilty is part of her strategy to potentially make it easier for the U.S. government to negotiate a prisoner swap.

Recently, Griner wrote a letter to President Joe Biden asking for help to get released.

“As I sit here in a Russian prison, alone with my thoughts and without the protection of my wife, family, friends, Olympic jersey, or any accomplishments, I’m terrified I might be here forever,” Griner wrote.

Biden has since spoken to Griner’s wife, Cherelle Griner, and the U.S. government has argued that Griner is wrongfully detained.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.