WNBA Star Brittney Griner Receives More Bad News

It looks like WNBA star Brittney Griner won't be making her way back to the U.S. anytime soon.

The pro athlete has been detained in a Russian prison for over 100 days now after she was taken into custody at Sheremetyevo International Airport in February. At the time, officials claim that they have found vape cartridges in Griner's bag, which contained hashish oil or hash oil, a marijuana concentrate that's illegal in Russia. She visited the country to play basketball for the Russian Premier League team UMMC Ekaterinburg, but was arrested instead.

She is now under investigation for "large-scale transportation of drugs," which could put her in prison for up to 10 years if found guilty, per The New York Times. Meanwhile, the U.S. government maintains that Griner was "wrongfully detained." Per ABC News, a spokesperson for the State Department said they are working double-time with the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs Roger Carstens and the interagency team to speed up "securing Brittney Griner's release." Unfortunately, no progress has been made yet, and reports say that Griner may stay in Russia even longer.

Russia extends Brittney Griner's detention once again

TASS, a Russian state-owned news agency, reported that the Russian court made the decision to extend WNBA player Brittney Griner's detention to 18 more days, keeping her in custody until July 2, per The Athletic. The extension was said to be at "the request of the investigation" over her alleged "large-scale transportation of drugs." This marks the third time Griner's detention had been delayed, but it's apparently the norm in the country.

On June 13, The New York Times reported that U.S. State Department officials have met to discuss steps to take for Griner's release, but there are no reports yet that reveal what had been decided. Meanwhile, Griner's agent, Lindsay Kagawa Colas, said that they are "in close contact with her, her legal representation in Russia, her family, her teams, and the WNBA and NBA." She added, "As this is an ongoing legal matter, we are not able to comment further on the specifics of her case but can confirm that as we work to get her home, her mental and physical health remain our primary concern."

As for her team, Diana Taurasi, the Phoenix Mercury's star guard, said that Griner has their full support. "It's something that we've all talked about intimately as a group, and now knowing the State Department at the highest level, from U.S. President Joe Biden to the team that is working on bringing back all Americans who are wrongfully detained, gives us a lot of confidence that they're working on it," she said in a statement, per USA Today. "Anything that we can do on our side to amplify and to put B.G. first will be our No. 1 priority."