With trial looming, WNBA star Brittney Griner faces strict Russian drug laws

The pro basketball player has been held on drug smuggling charges since February

But she has made no public comments about the circumstances surrounding her arrest.

If Griner is convicted on drug possession charges, she could be locked up for at least five years with a maximum of 10 years

Russia's criminal code can allow a court to impose a less than the minimum sentence

Butler said, but lawyers must give a persuasive argument.

Similar to the U.S., Russia's legal system grants a presumption of innocence

Russian authorities would have to prove their case at trial.

There is also the possibility of a plea deal, but that would not be to Griner's advantage

Russian drug laws are widely considered draconian and the country imprisons more people per capita for drug crimes compared with the rest of Europe

Griner's family is getting help from former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Bill Richardson

A spokesman for Richardson's diplomacy efforts said Friday that his team continues to "work on behalf of Brittney's family to secure her safe return home."