Father of ex-prisoner reveals 'life threatening' Russian jail conditions for Brittney Griner
The father of a former US prisoner in a Russian jail has revealed the dire conditions WNBA star Brittney Griner will face inside a Russian penal colony.
Former US Marine Trevor Rowdy Reed spent nearly 1,000 days behind Russian bars before he was freed in April.
He was exchanged for Konstantin Yaroshenko, a Russian pilot serving 20-years in jail for smuggling $150 million worth of cocaine into the United States.
Reed received a nine-year sentence for allegedly assaulting two Moscow police officers in August 2019.
He spent 11 months in a pre-trial detention centre in Moscow before benign shipped away to the remote Russian republic of Mordovia where he spent nine long months.
Griner, who also got handed a nine-year sentence for drug smuggling and possession, faces a similar fate with inmates often sent to secluded regions.
Trevor’s father, Joey Reed told The New York Post: “You gotta understand, the labour camps in Mordovia, these are pre-Stalin-era prisons, these were literally referred to as gulags.
“And even though there’s a federal authority for prisons, each warden has wide leeway to do whatever they want until it makes someone angry or leads to bad press.”
Reed says his son lived inside barracks built of brick and sheet metal, during freezing nights.
He says his son would fight back when they attempted to forcibly disrobe him.
He said: “They said they would take them off him and he said, ‘I will take you out trying’
“But the guards never beat or abused him because they knew he was on the trading block.”
The Marine vet had described the ‘horrible’ food that he was given that ‘even the barracks’ stray cats didn’t eat’.
Reed added: “He would only drink water, but could only last about four or five days each time because he was already so malnourished.
“He figured if he died of starvation, it would be an international incident.”
The 2021 state department report described Russian prisons and detention centres as ‘often harsh and life threatening’ with limited access to basic human rights.
The assessment found: “Overcrowding, abuse by guards and inmates, limited access to health care, food shortages, and inadequate sanitation were common in prisons, penal colonies, and other detention facilities.”
If the White House fails to secure Griner’s release or a reduced sentence she will finish her sentence at the age of 40.
Featured Image Credit: REUTERS / Alamy. Sipa US / Alamy.
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