To hear more audio stories from publications like The New York Times, download Audm for iPhone or Android . Shortly after his conviction in 2011 on charges including conspiring to kill American citizens, the Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout relayed a defiant message through his lawyer as he faced the prospect of decades in prison. Mr. Bout, his lawyer said , “believes this is not the end.” More than a decade later, Mr. Bout, 55, has been freed , despite serving less than half of his 25-year prison sentence. He was exchanged on Thursday for the American basketball star Brittney Griner, who had been imprisoned in Russia for 10 months. Russian officials had pressed for Mr. Bout’s return since his conviction by a New York jury on four counts that included conspiring to kill American citizens. Prosecutors said he had agreed to sell antiaircraft weapons to drug enforcement informants who were posing as arms buyers for the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia. The … [Read more...] about Who Is Viktor Bout, the Arms Dealer in the Swap for Brittney Griner?
Democratic in a sentence
close Video Judge Jeanine slams Manhattan's Soros-linked prosecutor as crime wave continues New York County District Attorney Alvin Bragg torched on 'The Five' for slashing felony sentences. Billionaire George Soros dropped a final $50 million donation to a top Democratic super PAC this week, reportedly doubling his contributions from the 2022 midterm cycle. Soros made the contribution to Democracy PAC, which is expected to use the funds to help Democrats prepare for the 2024 election cycle. The single donation matches the $50 million total he spent on the 2022 midterm elections, distributed among candidates and PACs across the country, according to Politico. Soros' midterm donations reportedly made him the single-largest donor for Democrats in 2022, and his donation this week shows he intends to remain a major player in the next cycle. The Democracy PAC advertises itself as a supporter of pro-democracy candidates "regardless of party." … [Read more...] about George Soros drops another $50M donation to Dem PAC, doubling midterm spending
More than four months after she was first detained, the W.N.B.A. star Brittney Griner is expected to appear in a Russian courtroom on Friday for the start of a trial on drug charges that legal experts said was all but certain to end in a conviction despite the clamor in the United States for her release. “There’s a bias mainly because the Russian judicial system says they really should not go to trial unless the defendant is going to be convicted,” said William Pomeranz, the acting director of the Kennan Institute and an expert on Russian law. “There’s no real idea or expectation that the defendant could be innocent. There’s no presumption of innocence, really.” Russian customs officials said they found vape cartridges containing traces of hashish oil in Griner’s luggage when she passed through a security checkpoint in an airport near Moscow on Feb. 17. The drug charges that Griner face carry a sentence of up to 10 years at a penal colony. Aleksandr Boikov, Griner’s lawyer, said … [Read more...] about Brittney Griner’s Trial in Russia Is Starting, and Likely to End in a Conviction
close Video Reparations legislations advocates defer details to government commission Reparations legislation supporters, short on specifics, say a government commission should determine appropriateness, financing, eligibility St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones will appoint a reparations commission to hold hearings on how to make amends for past treatment of Black Americans. The panel will hold monthly meetings and has no stated deadline for recommendations. Jones, a Democrat, signed an executive order Wednesday establishing a volunteer commission that will recommend how the city should make reparations . ST. LOUIS POLICE OFFICER SENTENCED FOR SHOOTING INTO CAR St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones signed an executive order this week to establish a reparations commission. (Nick Schnelle for The Washington Post via Getty Images) The nine-member commission will include at least one civil rights advocate, clergy member, … [Read more...] about St. Louis mayor signs executive order launching commission to study reparations to Black residents
Brittney Griner, the former WNBA star whom Russia released in turn for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, is an “inspiration” to “LGBTQI+ Americans,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said during Thursday’s White House press briefing, defending the Biden administration’s prisoner swap as retired Marine Paul Whelan remains imprisoned. “Unfortunately, the choice became to either bring Brittney home or no one,” Jean-Pierre said, defending the Biden administration for going through with the prisoner swap, leaving Whelan out of the deal. “As the President said this morning, he will never stop working to secure Paul’s release and return home, and he will not give up,” she continued before championing Griner as an “important” role model to LGBT Americans and black women. “On a personal note, Brittney is more than an athlete, more than an Olympian. She is an important role model and inspiration to millions of Americans, particularly the LGBTQI+ Americans and women of color,” … [Read more...] about Karine Jean-Pierre: Brittney Griner an Important ‘Inspiration’ to LGBTQI+ Americans
This is a carousel. Use Next and Previous buttons to navigate 3 Missouri's attorney general asked a judge on Thursday to sanction St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner, accusing her of concealing evidence in her effort to vacate the conviction for a man who has spent nearly 30 years in prison for murder. Lamar Johnson was convicted in 1994 of killing 25-year-old Marcus Boyd in an alleged drug dispute. Johnson has long claimed innocence. Gardner, a Democrat, filed a motion in August asking a St. Louis judge to vacate the conviction, a move that would free Johnson from prison. The judge has not yet ruled in the case but a hearing is scheduled for Monday. Republican Attorney General Eric Schmitt's filing in St. Louis Circuit Court said the circuit attorney's office falsely claimed that it had provided all forensic testing to the attorney general as part of the discovery process. “The Circuit Attorney never disclosed she received the positive … [Read more...] about Prosecutor seeking to free inmate accused of hiding evidence