Asked about the case, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov denied it was politically motivated.
“I can only operate with known facts, and the facts indicate that the eminent athlete was detained with illegal drugs that contained narcotic substances. There are articles in Russian legislation that provide for punishment for such crimes,” he told reporters. “Only the court can pass a verdict.”
US officials and a score of athletes have called for the release of Griner - or “BG” as she is known to basketball fans. They say she has been wrongfully detained and should be immediately returned to her family in the United States.
Griner's detention also prompted concerns that Moscow could use the two-time Olympic gold medallist to negotiate the release of a high-profile Russian in US custody.
The Kremlin has said that Griner violated Russian laws and denied she was being held hostage amid Russia's stand-off with the United States.
Griner, a centre for the Phoenix Mercury, had played for UMMC Ekaterinburg in Russia during the WNBA off-season, like several other US players offered lucrative contracts by the Russian Women's Basketball Premier League.
However some have now left the Russian league, amid Griner's detention and Russia's military intervention in Ukraine.
Griner's wife, Cherelle Griner, told CNN in an interview on Thursday evening that she was hoping for a meeting with U.S. President Joe Biden.
“I would love for him to tell me he cares,” Cherelle Griner said.
The US government has warned citizens against travelling to Russia in light of the “potential for harassment against US citizens by Russian government security officials”.
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said last week there was “no higher priority” than bringing home Griner and other Americans “illegally detained” abroad.