In “It’s About Time” news…The United States has offered Russia a deal aimed at securing the release of WNBA star Brittney Griner and ex-marine Paul Whelan

Secretary of State Antony Blinken did not offer any details on the proposed deal, but he did confirm it was proposed weeks ago and he expects to speak with his Kremlin counterpart very soon. 

For years, Russia has had a vested interest in the release of Viktor Bout, a Russian arms dealer, who was one labeled the “Merchant of Death.” 

Bout was sentenced to 25 years in prison in 2021 on charges the he schemed to illegally sell millions of dollars in weapons.

Brittney Griner has been in custody since February when she was arrested at the Moscow airport when vape cartridges containing cannabis oil were discovered in her luggage. 

Her trial began on July 1 and she has testified that she had no criminal intent and inadvertently packed the cartridges.

She also noted that she had a doctor’s recommendation for it. 

Listen to audio from the trial below where Brittney explains how she wasn’t read her rights, there wasn’t an adequate translator, and no one explained the documents she was being asked to sign.

Brittney faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted of transporting drugs. 

Paul Whelan, a corporate security executive from Michigan, was arrested on espionage charges and sentenced to 16 years in prison in 2020.

The U.S. government is not a fan of swapping prisoners because of concerns that it may lead to more hostage-taking.

They are also concerned that it could promote a false equivalency between wrongfully detained Americans and foreign nationals who are justly convicted.

In April, Marine veteran Trevor Reed was released in exchange for jailed Russian pilot, Konstantin Yaroshenko.

This gesture may have opened the door for a deal to get Brittney and Paul back home. 

We gone see.

Source: Associated Press