Trevor Noah condemns Brittney Griner's sentencing: 'Russia doesn't care' about what she did

·3 min read

Trevor Noah didn't mince any words during his show Thursday when reacting to Brittney Griner's nine-year Russian prison sentence.

Griner, a WNBA star, two-time United States Olympic gold medalist and player for Russian team UMMC Ekaterinburg since 2014 during the WNBA offseason, was found guilty of drug possession and sentenced to nine years in a penal colony after authorities arrested her at a Moscow airport for carrying vape cartridges containing cannabis oil in her luggage.

"We all know Russia doesn’t care about what Brittney Griner did. This is the same country that’s breaking every human rights law on the planet, but they’re like, ‘That woman has vape cartridge. She’s real criminal,' " Noah said, feigning a Russian accent. "Get the (expletive) out of here, man."

Griner, who entered a guilty plea weeks ago, apologized to her family and wife. Now that the trial has concluded, negotiations to free Griner are expected to continue between Washington and Moscow during a period of tension between the two countries.

Brittney Griner is escorted by police for her trial for cannabis possession in Khimki, outside Moscow on Aug. 2, 2022.
Brittney Griner is escorted by police for her trial for cannabis possession in Khimki, outside Moscow on Aug. 2, 2022.

"Whoever America has in prison, send them to Russia," Noah continued. "It seems like they win, but don't forget: That person now has to live in Russia. They'll get there and be like, 'This whole country is prison. I miss food in Alcatraz.' "

He added: "If we had more time, we could talk about how this whole thing could have been avoided if the WNBA paid their stars enough that they didn't have to go and play in Russia in the off-season to make money."

Noah wasn't the only celebrity to speak out in support of the WNBA star following Thursday's decision.

More: Brittney Griner convicted on drug charges, sentenced to nine years in Russian prison

Justin Bieber, Jada Pinkett Smith, more stars speak out

"THIS HURTS," Justin Bieber wrote Thursday on his Instagram stories alongside a photo of Griner being held in Russia. "If anyone knows of anyway (sic) I can help please let me know."

50 Cent called the decision "wild, adding on Instagram "You don't ever want to get caught up in the politics."

Jada Pinkett Smith lamented Griner's sentencing falling on "the same day we finally got some justice" for Breonna Taylor, the 26-year-old Black medical worker who was shot to death in 2020 by Louisville officers who knocked down her door while executing the search warrant. The Justice Department announced Thursday that four Louisville police officers involved in the deadly raid at Breonna Taylor's home were charged with civil-rights violations.

'BRING HER HOME!!!" Gabrielle Union wrote on Instagram, adding the hashtag #WeAreBG.

"The Russian judge ignored everything (Brittney) Griner had stated," Mia Farrow tweeted. "He sentenced her to 9 years in a ‘penal colony’. For carrying 2 vaping cartridges - medically prescribed. Damn. Heartbreaking."

"My heart breaks for Brittney Griner, her wife & her family," Sherri Shepherd tweeted. "I need America to do all that it can to get this woman home immediately! End this nightmare! Free Brittney Griner!"

"BRING BRITTNEY HOME," Andy Cohen tweeted with American flag and prayer hands emojis.

Contributing: Chris Bumbaca, Billy Kobin and Ashley R. Williams

More: Brittney Griner sentenced to nine years on drug charges in Russia. What happens next?

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Trevor Noah slams Brittney Griner Russia sentence in curse-laden rant