"If Brittney Griner had been caught in some America states she would have gotten a higher sentence"

Ever since Brittney Griner got sentence to 9 years in Russian Prison for her “drug smuggling” I’ve seen people opine on Twitter that “the sentence isn’t that extensive, in some US states to this day you’ll get 10-15 years for her exact crime”.

Does this make any sense? And I’m asking for exactly what she was caught with, the small amount of hash vape oil she was caught with in her airport bag, not just general drug smuggling. In the United States what’s the harshest penalty she could be given for what she did, both realistically but also worst case scenario?

For that amount, first time offense? I’m not finding anything harsher than 1 year (a bunch of states) and $150,000 fine (Arizona, but the max sentence there is 4 months; the largest fine for any other state is $2500, most are $1000 or less).

That’s quite old. It’s legal in Arizona now. As well as Michigan. Several mentioned are decriminalized, too. The Indian Nations in Oklahoma can choose too, not sure about the present status.

True. But still, it handily debunks the notion that she’d be worse off here.

However, in some states with harsh fines that are still on he books, you can be jailed or have your movements severely restricted (house arrest with travel to and from work only, and you pay garnished) until the fines are paid.

It was a long time ago, but someone in my Nat’l Guard unit was released from house arrest to go to drill, and it was for inability to pay a fine-- not a drug charge, or he would have been discharged, but I remember everyone talking about the punishment being out of proportion to the original crime, and the house arrest was about inability to pay a fine.

Yes, being confined to your own living room is not the same as a Russian prison, but it could, in fact, be for a very long time, and if you rented, rather than owned, and didn’t get you lease renewed, you could end up in the county jail if no relative would take you in for your house arrest.

In three decades of experience working in prison, I never saw anyone who was sentenced to prison for a single possession of marijuana. People who were serving sentences for drug crimes either were involved in selling drugs, had multiple repeat arrests for drug possession, or were sentenced for drug charges along with other charges like theft.

I’ll grant that this is just my personal experience. But if they were a lot of people being sent to prison for a single drug possession charge, I would have seen some of them.

Keep in mind that Britney is a Black woman. That would undoubtedly play a role in her sentencing in several courtrooms in this country.

I believe this was the implication of the Twitter people I saw.

Those cartridges contain very strong distillate. It might be enough to be considered for trafficking or intent to distribute felony charges.

I don’t think any American state has a labor camp.

Actually it’s a popular concept.

Mandating that prisoners perform labor is not the same thing as having a prison labor camp.

Okay … but what is the difference? Educate me.

They’re in prison, not a camp.

In America she would have had a real trial, and a lawyer that wouldn’t tell her that the outcome was predetermined, and that pleading anything but guilty would just add years to her sentence.

There’s also the small fact that she’s a famous athlete. Our criminal justice system is extremely unfair to black people but that would mitigate it.

The thing is, Russia isn’t the US. Their court system has a conviction rate in the high 90’s percentages. Outcomes do seem largely predeterimined there. Given she is a foreigner there, from a nation that is in long-standing conflict with Russia and from a nation that opposes Russia’s current war there could be a political dimension there that would not be present in the US. Griner is also a lesbian, which works against her in Russia.

Frankly, I’m a bit surprised her sentence wasn’t worse

It certainly worked against her in this case. It turned her into a bargaining chip.

And she’s female, and lesbian on top of it.

Four protected classes, what’s not to love?

My own opinion?

This is me not giving a shit - IDGAF

I meant, if she was in the US she would have a better chance of a fair trial than would a poor black woman.