Domonick Wade, Staff writer

Britney Griner is an American basketball player, WNBA champion. and an innocent woman who was detained in Russia on a drug offense on February 17, 2022 . She was ultimately found guilty and sentenced to nine years, but now has been released in a prisoner exchange for one of Russia’s deadliest arm dealers, Viktor Bout, a Russian arms dealer serving a 25 year sentence in a U.S. federal prison.

Her trial began July 2022, and Britney had pled guilty, though she stated that the cannabis oil had been packed accidentally. On August 4th 2022 Griner was found guilty of sneaking illegal drugs to Russia with criminal intent and was sentenced to nine years in a penal colony .

In October 2022 a Russian court rejected her appeal even though she stated that the cannabis oil helps for her chronic pain. On December 8th, after all the suffering and waiting she did, Britney Griner was released from prison in exchange for Bout.

To the Russians, trading Britney Griner for Viktor Bout was a swap of two criminals. I highly disagree on this one. I believe that Russia prolonged her release because they knew if they were to make Britney Griner out to be a criminal and a harsh person, the United Stats would fight for her and get her out of Russia’s cold environment and back home to safety. So they took advantage of the situation and requested  a prison swap and got what they wanted.

In my personal opinion, they shouldn’t have made that swap with someone as dangerous as Viktor Bout. They could’ve found a different way to bring her back home and it’s just unfair to Britney to have to take on all the backlash from the whole world. They think this is the end, but this is just the beginning to many problems in the future.