Former President Donald Trump criticized a potential prisoner exchange that would return WNBA star Brittney Griner and former Marine Paul Whelan to the United States.
Trump made the comments as a guest on The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show on July 29. He said of the proposed swap that would send Russian weapons trafficker Viktor Bout back to Russia: “Doesn’t seem like a very good trade, does it?”
“We’re supposed to get her out for an absolute killer and one of the biggest arms dealers in the world,” Trump said. “Killed many Americans. Killed many people. And he’s gonna get a free card and we’re gonna get her.”
Griner has been detained in Russia since February after she was accused of possessing cartridges containing hashish oil in her luggage at a Moscow Airport. Griner pled guilty to the drug charges, which carry a 10-year prison sentence in Russia. Her defense has shared letters from U.S. doctors indicating that Griner uses cannabis for medicinal purposes, and it also argued Griner did not intend to bring the cartridges into Russia.
Trump added that he didn’t think it made sense for the U.S. to free Russian prisoners for Griner, who he described as being “loaded up on drugs.”
Griner, 31, is due back in Russian court later this week.