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BREAKING: Russian Court Rejects Brittney Griner’s Appeal of Nine-Year Sentence 

CONTACT: Brett Abrams | 

National Black Justice Coalition Leader Reacts to Decision, Speaks to Issues Griner Faces as a Black LGBTQ+/SGL Woman and American

Earlier today, it was reported that a Russian court rejected Brittney Griner‘s appeal of her nine-year sentence on drug charges, a completely anticipated result in a trial that U.S. and international officials have called an illegitimate proceeding.

In reaction to the decision, Victoria Kirby York, a Black same gender loving woman and deputy executive director of the National Black Justice Coalition, issued the following statement:

“Today’s decision by a Russian court to reject Brittney Griner’s nine-year prison sentence appeal for a minor drug offense feels all too familiar to the miscarriages of justice that millions of Black people in the United States have felt for decades. 

“But make no mistake, while drug laws across the world have disproportionately harmed people of color – Brittney Griner is a jailed hostage in a foreign land whose most heinous crime is simply being an American in the wrong place at the wrong time. 

“We continue to support President Biden and the U.S. State Department in doing all they can to bring her home.” 

The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC) is a civil rights organization dedicated to the empowerment of Black lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and same gender loving (LGBTQ/SGL) people, including people living with HIV/AIDS.