President Donald Trump personally asked the President of the Republic of China's Xi Jinping to help with the shoplifting case involving three UCLA men's basketball players, including LiAngelo Ball, brother of Los Angeles Lakers rookie guard Lonzo Ball. They did not fly home with the team, and ESPN has reported that authorities have surveillance footage and that the players could be required to remain in Hangzhou for a week or two.
Trump arrived in China on a diplomatic visit one day after the UCLA players were arrested. The players could reportedly stay in the country for a "week or two". White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed that Trump and Xi talked about the case. The players were arrested last week and charged with shoplifting from a Louis Vuitton store located next to the team's hotel.
UCLA returned to the United States on Saturday without the three freshmen, sources told Markazi.
While a resolution to the legal issues seems to be moving toward a conclusion, they will no doubt still face punishment upon return to the USA, with a lengthy suspension and dismissal from the team as possibilities.
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Xi has promised to look into the case and ensure, as Trump has asked, that the players be treated fairly and expeditiously, a US official, who requested anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation, told The Post.
Several experts in Chinese law said charges and accompanying punishment will dependent on the value of the stolen goods.