Brittney Griner prisoner swap may be one of many in recent history | USA TODAY

The U.S. State Department went public with the possibility of a prisoner swap, revealing that the U.S. had made a “substantial proposal” aimed at securing the release of Brittney Griner.

RELATED: Brittney Griner sentenced to nine years in Russia for drug charges

WNBA star Brittney Griner has been sentenced to nine years in a Russian prison for drug charges.

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.

Griner, who had played for Russian team UMMC Ekaterinburg since 2014 during the WNBA offseason, was arrested Feb. 17 at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport. Russian authorities said she carried vape cartridges containing hashish oil in her luggage; Griner said during the trial that took place in Khmiki, Russia, that she accidentally packed them in haste and pleaded guilty “without intent.” The court, however, claimed she committed the crime deliberately.

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