WNBA star Brittney Griner of the Phoenix Mercury had her pretrial detention in Russia extended by one month, ESPN reported Friday.
Why it matters: That means that Griner, who appeared in court for a brief hearing Friday, will be held until at least June 18, according to CNN.
Griner’s detention had previously been extended until mid-May, CNN reported.
“Today’s news is a sobering reminder that international detention cases are long, winding, frustrating ordeals — rarely straightforward,” Dani Gilbert, an assistant professor at the U.S. Air Force Academy with expertise in state-sponsored hostage taking, told ESPN.
“We honestly don’t know if this is good or bad news. It could mean buying time to work out a swift deal for her release, or it could mean more complications put on the table.”
Catch up quick: Griner was originally detained in Russia back in February after being arrested in a Russian airport after authorities said they found vape cartridges with cannabis oil in her luggage.
If Griner is convicted, it could carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, according to The Associated Press.
Earlier this month, the United States government classified Griner as “wrongfully detained” in Russia.
ESPN’s report Friday indicated there’s no “visible progress” yet from efforts by the WNBA and U.S. officials to secure her release.