Britney Grineradvocate Maria Blagovolina reported that the WNBA star’s team is appealing the court’s decision to sentence her to nine years in prison.
Griner was arrested back in February by customs officers at an airport near Moscow for possession of cannabis oil, the verdict became known on Thursday.
“We are very disappointed and very upset by this verdict,” Blagovolin PEOPLE said.
“Sentences under this article of the criminal court, as a rule, are not so severe. Usually it’s about five and a half or six years.
“That is, nine years is quite unusual and contradicts the existing judicial practice in Russia.
“Therefore, we are very disappointed and very surprised by this decision of the court.
“We must use every legal opportunity we have, and an appeal is one of those opportunities.”
Alexander Boykovanother member Grinerthe legal team indicated that the appeal process could take months.
Meanwhile, the US government has reportedly offered Russia a prisoner exchange, with CNN claiming they are open to the exchange. Griner and former Marine Paul Whelan for a convicted Russian arms dealer Victor Bout.
“Today an American citizen Britney Griner received a prison sentence, which is another reminder of what the world already knew: Russia wrongfully withholds Britney“President of the U.S.A Joe Biden says in the statement.
“This is unacceptable and I call on Russia to release her immediately so she can be with her wife, loved ones, friends and teammates.”
Boikov told PEOPLE that if the two countries come to an agreement, the appeal will be rejected Grinerteam of lawyers.