WASHINGTON D.C. – The leader of the free world traded a notorious mass murdering arms dealer to Russia for the release of troubled WNBA player Brittney Griner who was convicted of possession of cannabis in Russia and sentenced to nine years in prison.
Multiple sources report Griner was freed from a Russian penal colony on Thursday in a prisoner exchange for convicted Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, a U.S. official confirmed to Fox News.
U.S. and Russian officials have expressed optimism in recent weeks about a potential deal for Griner. A top Russian official said last week that a deal was possible before year’s end.
President Biden tweeted about Griner’s release. He was seen in pictures with Vice President Kamala Harris and Griner's wife, Cherelle Griner.
Bout was in the middle of a 25-year sentence in federal prison after he was convicted of conspiracy to kill Americans relating to the support of a Colombian terrorist organization.
Paul Whelan, another American imprisoned in Russia, was not a part of the swap. He has been jailed on espionage charges that his family and the U.S. government have said are baseless.