U.S. basketball player Brittney Griner, who was detained in March at Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport and later charged with illegal possession of cannabis, is escorted before a court hearing in Khimki outside Moscow, Russia July 1, 2022. REUTERS/Evgenia Novozhenina

Basketball player Brittney Griner, who is being held in Moscow, has personally asked US President Joe Biden for help. The 31-year-old’s environment distributed excerpts of a letter on Monday (local time) when the US national holiday was celebrated. The White House acknowledged receipt of the letter.

Griner has been in Russian custody since February 17 on charges of drug possession. Her trial began last Friday. It will continue on Thursday. The pre-trial detention was last extended until December 20th.

Griner asked Biden in the letter not to forget her and other detained Americans. “Sitting here in a Russian prison, alone with my thoughts and without the protection of my wife, family, friends, Olympic jersey or other accomplishments, I fear that I may be here forever,” her letter read to Biden, for whom she said she voted in the 2020 US presidential election.

She usually celebrates July 4th with her family, where those who fought for freedom are honored, Griner wrote. She recalled that her father was a Vietnam War veteran. “It hurts to think of how I usually celebrate this day because freedom means something very different to me this year.”

The two-time Olympic champion, who plays for Phoenix Mercury in the USA but was also active in Russia’s league, faces up to ten years in prison. National Security Council spokeswoman Adrienne Watson said the US government is doing everything it can to bring Griner home.