Trump slams reported prison exchange of ‘spoiled’ Griner for ‘Merchant of Death’

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Trump slams reported prison exchange of ‘spoiled’ Griner for ‘Merchant of Death’

Chris Irvine

July 30, 10:53 PM July 30, 10:53 PM

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Former President Donald Trump accused WNBA star Brittney Griner of being “spoiled” and said the potential prisoner swap for the Russian arms dealer dubbed the “Merchant of Death” is a bad idea.

Speaking on Saturday on The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show, Trump said of the basketball star: “She knew you don’t go in there loaded up with drugs, and she admitted it.”

On the arms dealer Viktor Bout, Trump added: “It certainly doesn’t seem like a very good trade, does it?”


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He continued: “He’s absolutely one of the worst in the world, and he’s going to be given his freedom because a potentially spoiled person goes into Russia loaded up with drugs.”

On Russia’s drug laws, he said: “They don’t like drugs. And she got caught. And now, we’re supposed to get her out — and she makes, you know, a lot of money, I guess. We’re supposed to get her out for an absolute killer and one of the biggest arms dealers in the world. Killed many Americans. Killed many people,” the former president said.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Friday regarding the exchange that would result in Griner and Paul Whelan gaining their freedom.

Blinken said during a press conference that he “pressed the Kremlin to accept the substantial proposal that we put forth on the release of Paul Whelan and Brittney Griner.” Such a high-level contact is noteworthy, given Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

While the State Department and the administration made the public admission, officials declined to confirm the reports that this included the transfer of convicted arms dealer Viktor Bout.

Griner, who has been detained since February, is facing a 10-year prison sentence for drug charges in a Russian judicial system that overwhelmingly results in guilty verdicts for drug possession. She was arrested after bringing cannabis vape cartridges into Russia.

Bout’s black market exploits earned him the moniker the “Merchant of Death” and inspired the Nicolas Cage film Lord of War.

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The Kremlin has long called for Bout’s release since he was first detained by authorities in Thailand back in 2008 upon the request of the United States.

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