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A judge in Russia has convicted American basketball star Brittney Griner of drug possession and smuggling and sentenced her to nine years in prison. Judge Anna Sotnikova said the time Griner has served in custody since her arrest in February would count toward the sentence. Griner showed little emotion to the sentence. The unusually quick verdict came in a politically charged case amid soaring tensions between Moscow and Washington over Ukraine and could lead to a high-stakes prisoner exchange. Before the verdict, an emotional Griner told the court she had no intention to break the law by bringing vape cartridges with cannabis oil when she flew to Moscow to play basketball in the city of Yekaterinburg.

Pope Francis has apologized for the Catholic Church’s cooperation with Canada’s “catastrophic” policy of Indigenous residential schools. The pontiff says the forced assimilation of Native peoples into Christian society destroyed their cultures, severed their families and marginalized generations in ways still being felt today. Francis spoke Monday near the site of the former Ermineskin Indian Residential School, on lands of four Cree nations south of Edmonton, Alberta. He said, “I humbly beg forgiveness for the evil committed by so many Christians against the Indigenous peoples.” The long-awaited apology opens Francis’ weeklong “penitential pilgrimage” to Canada, which is meant to help the church on its path of reconciliation with Indigenous peoples and help victims heal.

OWASSO — Cherokee Nation and its film office celebrated the opening of the Cherokee Film Studios, Owasso Campus, with a dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday. The tribe’s state-of-the-art facility is the first of its kind in Oklahoma and Indian Country.

The men were told they were being treated for “bad blood.” In truth, the federal government enrolled around 600 black men from rural Alabama in a 40-year study of untreated syphilis. The federal government let hundreds of the men go untreated for syphilis in order to study the impact of the disease on the human body. The men were denied access to a cure, even when one became widely available. The study came to an end nearly four months after a July 25, 1972, Associated Press report by investigative reporter Jean Heller. More than two decades later, President Bill Clinton apologized for what he called a racist and shameful study.

For four decades, the United States government enrolled hundreds of Black men in Alabama in a study on syphilis, just so they could document the disease’s ravages on the human body. On July 25, 1972, Jean Heller, a then 29-year-old investigative reporter at The Associated Press shocked the world with a story of what is now known as the “Tuskegee Study.” Within four months, the U.S. Public Health Service would end the study, but dozens had already died. Even now, 50 years after it was revealed, the study casts a long shadow over the nation, as some African Americans cite Tuskegee in refusing to seek medical treatment or participate in clinical trials.