U.S. Government Changes Brittney Griner's Status To 'Wrongfully Detained'

The U.S. government now officially considers WNBA star Brittney Griner as "wrongfully detained" in Russia.

WNBA Finals - Game One - Chicago Sky v Phoenix Mercury

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“The Department of State has determined that the Russian Federation has wrongfully detained U.S. citizen Brittney Griner,” a State Department official said to ESPN on Monday. “With this determination, the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs Roger Carstens will lead the interagency team for securing Brittney Griner’s release.”

While officials did not specify the reasoning behind the reclassification, it now brings a sense of urgency to getting the 31-year-old Phoenix Mercury player back into the U.S.

“Brittney has been detained for 75 days and our expectation is that the White House do whatever is necessary to bring her home,” Griner's agent, Lindsay Kagawa Colas, said in a statement on Tuesday.

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