Brittney Griner is not very optimistic about her future right now.
Griner, who has been convicted of drug charges and sentenced to 9 years in prison for drug charges fears she will have to serve her full sentence in Russia.
“She is not yet absolutely convinced that America will be able to take her home,” Griner’s lawyer, Alexandr D. Boykov told The New York Times after speaking with her on Tuesday. “She is very worried about what the price of that will be, and she is afraid that she will have to serve the whole sentence here in Russia.”
Brittney Griner, the WNBA star facing nine years in prison in Russia for drug possession, is in her ninth month in detention. She's increasingly anxious about her chances of being freed in a prisoner swap and struggling emotionally, her lawyer said. https://t.co/8EulUk6jhj pic.twitter.com/v15WCcuFWv
— The New York Times (@nytimes) October 12, 2022
While Griner doesn’t believe she’ll be released anytime soon, former Governor Bill Richardson, who has been working on freeing Griner, thinks the former WNBA star will be back home before the end of the year.
I do think so. Now, I hate making predictions, but yes,” Richardson told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union” when asked if he believed Griiner and Whelan may be released before the end of this year.
“I know (the families are) very emotional and this is a very emotional time. All I can say is that the Biden administration is working hard on it,” added Richardson, who served as US ambassador to the United Nations in the Clinton administration. “So am I. We coordinate, but not always agree on every tactical decision. But I’m not going to interfere in their process. I’m just giving you my assessment after two visits to Russia on behalf of American hostages.”
Richardson characterized his meetings in Russia as being with “senior Russian officials, individuals close to President (Vladimir) Putin.”
“I am cautiously optimistic,” Richardson said of the negotiations over Griner and Whelan’s release.
“I got the sense that the Russian officials that I met with, that I’ve known over the years, are ready to talk,” he said. “I got a good sense from the Russians – the vibrations – but I’m not a government official.”
Ex-United Nations ambassador Bill Richardson, after meeting with senior Russian officials, is “cautiously optimistic” that Brittney Griner and Paul Whelan could be released from Russia by the end of the yearhttps://t.co/KOEP1btZb7 pic.twitter.com/eoB99rzigw
— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) October 9, 2022