Saturday, 18 November, 2017

US State Department offers help to LiAngelo Ball, UCLA teammates

LiAngelo Ball one of three UCLA players arrested in China UCLA basketball team questioned by police in China
Spencer Simpson | 09 November, 2017, 00:44

The three UCLA basketball players who were caught shoplifting while on the team trip to China will more than likely have to remain in China for about a month, according to multiple sources. But now it seems the Bruins will need to attend to a serious legal matter involving three of their basketball players before they can worry about playing a game. Markazi reports that the three players will not be allowed to leave their hotel in Hangzhou until the legal process is over. Police interviewed players from both teams before clearing three players from Georgia Tech, according to a statement released by the school. Their teammates, as well as players from Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets - whom they are up against on Saturday - were initially questioned "for hours".

And now it appears that the authorities may have been investigating shoplifting when conducting that search.

"He'll be fine. He'll be fine", LaVar Ball told a reporter. Taking some items from a shop in China is not very Big Baller.

UCLA's statement, per ESPN, said the university was aware of the incident and cooperating with Chinese authorities. While not regarded as good of a basketball player as his older brother, current Los Angeles Lakers star and former UCLA standout Lonzo, nor little brother LaMelo, Ball was still awarded a scholarship to play for UCLA this year. Ball previously told ESPN that he was planning on traveling to China for the game, but it is unknown whether he is there.

Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott issued a statement saying the conference is "disappointed" in the situation. He'll be fine. Everyone's making it a big deal. "We will comment shortly".

Now, an unidentified lawyer versed in Chinese law told Yahoo Sports that if standard practices are applied, the players could spend three to 10 years in prison if convicted, adding that it would take much effort from the US government to have them released from detention or their charges relaxed. "The players questioned were respectful at all times". Georgia Tech said none of its athletes were involved.

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