President Donald Trump reportedly asked Chinese President Xi Jinping to intercede on behalf of three UCLA players who were arrested last week on suspicion of shoplifting from several high end boutiques in China.
Lonzo Ball’s brother LiAngelo Ball, 18, and two other UCLA rookies — Cody Riley, 19, and Jalen Hill, 17, are on house arrest at a Hangzhou hotel.
The UCLA men’s basketball team returned to the U.S. without the three players after defeating Georgia Tech in Shanghai, China on Saturday.
Ball, Riley and Hill were arrested on Tuesday — a day before Trump arrived in China for his first official visit.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed in an email that President Trump spoke to Xi on behalf of the three boys.
via Washingtonpost.com — Trump raised the arrests during a two-day state visit to Beijing… After Trump raised the matter, Xi promised to look into the case and ensure that the players are treated fairly and expeditiously, said a U.S. official who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation. Chief of Staff John F. Kelly has been in touch with the families of the players and has spoken with UCLA Coach Steve Alford, and Kelly remains in contact with Chinese authorities, the official added. This official indicated that charges against the players have been reduced and that the case is proceeding toward a resolution.
The boys are expected to remain in China for at least a month.
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