Maria Blagovolina, the lawyer for American basketball star Britney Greiner, who was sentenced to nine years in prison in Russia, told Reuters on Monday that her defense team has appealed the conviction of drug possession and smuggling.

Greiner, who was playing for a Russian team, was arrested at a Moscow airport on February 17 after cartridges loaded with cannabis were found in her bag.

Greiner pleaded guilty, but said she had made a "good faith mistake" by entering Russia with cannabis oil, which is illegal in the country.

Greiner was convicted on August 4th.

The US government says Greiner has been unjustly imprisoned and has offered to trade her for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, who is serving a 25-year prison sentence in the US.

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