Speed Reads


Brittney Griner lawyers tell court she was prescribed medical cannabis due to chronic pain

As Brittney Griner's drug trial in Russia continues, her lawyers have presented evidence in court that she was prescribed medical cannabis.

During a hearing on Friday, the basketball star's attorneys showed a letter from a doctor recommending the use of cannabis for treating chronic pain, according to The Associated Press and CNN

Griner has been detained in Russia for months after being arrested at the airport for possession of cannabis vape cartridges. She pleaded guilty but told the court she was "in a rush packing and the cartridges accidentally ended up in my bags." Griner could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison. 

A letter read in court Friday from a medical center stated that Griner underwent an examination in 2020 after complaining of "chronic pain due to multiple ankle injuries," and a report from a doctor said she had a "chronic debilitating disease caused by severe chronic pain" and was advised to use medical cannabis, CNN reports

President Biden has faced growing pressure to secure Griner's release from Russia, and the WNBA star in a letter to the president said she's "terrified I might be here forever." The U.S. has classified Griner as "wrongfully detained," and Biden spoke with Griner's wife in a phone call in July. The White House said he assured her that he's "working to secure Brittney's release as soon as possible."

According to the AP, the next hearing in Griner's trial is scheduled for July 26.