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Elon Musk has called on US authorities to release people incarcerated for weed offences.
The tech billionaire posted a meme on Twitter after it was revealed America was willing to trade a Russian war criminal with Brittney Griner.
The WNBA star has been in Russian custody for the past five months and recently pleaded guilty to drug smuggling when she was allegedly found carrying vape cartridges containing cannabis oil in her luggage.
Griner was playing in Russia during the WNBA off-season as many American basketball players do before returning to their regular schedule.
Maybe free some people in jail for weed here too? pic.twitter.com/AYo0ZC79lZ— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 31, 2022
The US is chalking up plans to get her back on American soil and said they would be up for a prisoner exchange with Moscow.
They've dangled the possibility of releasing Viktor Bout, who has the ominous nickname of the 'Merchant of Death'.
He's a Russian arms dealer, who was sentenced to 25 years behind bars in 2012 for illegally selling millions of dollars in weapons, according to The Guardian.
America would exchange Bout with Griner and US police officer Paul Whelan, who was arrested in 2018 and sentenced to 16 years in a Russian prison after being convicted of espionage.
National Security Coordinator John Kirby has confirmed the prisoner swap has been communicated to Russian officials.
He told the White House press: “We certainly hope that Russia will favourably engage on it, but I don't want to get into more detail about that.
“We believe that this is a serious proposal, and we want the Russians to take it seriously as well."
While Griner's supporters will be hoping the deal will go through so that the basketball star can leave Moscow and come home, Musk reckons it should signal a change in America's approach to cannabis.
The meme he shared had the text saying 'people in the US in jail for weed while the government trades a Russian war criminal to free a woman's basketball player in jail for weed'.
The Tesla founder added in his post on Twitter: "Maybe free some people in jail for weed here too?"
Democrats in the US recently tabled a bill to federally decriminalise marijuana.
Senators Cory Booker and Ron Wyden, along with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, resubmitted a revised piece of legislation that would remove cannabis from the schedule of federal drug offences.
While this bill won't help those who are incarcerated at the moment, it could help prevent others from getting caught up in the criminal justice system.
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