Brittney Griner Released in Prisoner Swap for Arms Dealer
WNBA star Brittney Griner is in the custody of U.S. officials after being freed in a prisoner swap between the U.S. and Russia, President Biden said Thursday.
For Context: Griner was swapped for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, who was serving a 25-year prison sentence in the U.S. for conspiring to sell weapons to a U.S.-designated foreign terrorist group. Griner had been sentenced to nine years in prison after Russian police said they found vape cartridges containing illegal cannabis oil in her luggage. She was recently transferred to a penal colony known for harsh conditions. Paul Whelan, a former U.S. marine who's been in Russian prison since 2020 after being convicted of spying, was not part of the deal. Bout
Key Quotes: "Moments ago I spoke to Brittney Griner. She is safe. She is on a plane. She is one her way home," President Joe Biden tweeted Thursday.
How the Media Covered It: The swap was the top story from news sources across the political spectrum Thursday morning. Many highlighted how Whelan was not part of the deal. Right-rated sources tended to focus more on Bout and his criminal history.
Featured Coverage of this Story
From the RightBrittney Griner released from Russian prison in swap for convicted arms dealer
Brittney Griner was arrested in February before the start of the Russia and Ukraine war for bringing in vape cartridges containing oils derived from cannabis through a Moscow airport as she was returning to the country to play for a basketball league in the country.
About 10 months later, just weeks before the Christmas holiday, Griner is coming home.
Griner was freed from a Russian penal colony on Thursday in a prisoner exchange for convicted Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, a U.S. official confirmed to Fox News.
U.S. and Russian officials...
From the CenterBrittney Griner released in prisoner swap for Russian arms dealer
WNBA star Brittney Griner has been freed in a prisoner swap between the U.S. and Russia and is in the custody of U.S. officials, President Biden said Thursday.
Driving the news: In exchange for Griner, the U.S. has freed convicted Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, according to multiple media reports.
"Moments ago I spoke to Brittney Griner. She is safe. She is on a plane. She is one her way home," Biden tweeted Thursday, alongside photos of Griner's wife, Cherelle Griner.
Catch up quick: Griner was arrested in February after Russian authorities said they found a vape cartridge with hashish...
From the LeftBrittney Griner Is Free
WNBA star Brittney Griner was released to the United States in a prisoner swap Thursday, U.S. officials said, ending her 294-day ordeal in Russian custody.
U.S. officials confirmed to VICE News and other media outlets that they secured Griner’s release in exchange for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout. President Joe Biden signed off on the deal within the last week, CBS News reported.
Griner, who was sentenced to nine years in prison in August, is back in U.S. custody, American officials told CBS News. Biden is set to speak at the White House to...