President Trump is hearing crickets from a trio of UCLA basketball players, despite his successful full-court press to get China to drop shoplifting charges against them.
The three players, LiAngelo Ball, Jalen Hill and Cody Riley, were arrested after being accused of stealing designer sunglasses from a Louis Vuitton store next to the team’s hotel in Hangzhou. Trump, while on a tour of Asia, urged his Chinese counterpart to let them go, and may have been looking for some credit Wednesday.
“Do you think the three UCLA Basketball Players will say thank you President Trump? They were headed for 10 years in jail!” the president tweeted.
During his visit to Bejing last week, Fox News confirmed that Trump personally asked Chinese President Xi Jinping to help resolve the case.
Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott, the leader of the western U.S. collegiate athletic conference, said that the matter had “been resolved to the satisfaction of the Chinese authorities.”
The three players arrived at Los Angeles International airport late Tuesday afternoon, while the rest of the team returned to the U.S. on Saturday.
Scott thanked Trump, the White House and the State Department for their efforts in resolving the incident, indicating that UCLA made “significant efforts,” as well, on behalf of its three players.
The team was playing their season-opening game against Georgia Tech in Shanghai on Saturday, and won the game 63-60.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.