LiAngelo Ball, Jalen Hill, and Cody Riley are young, African-American basketball players under arrest for shoplifting in China. But instead of spending the next decade in a Chinese prison, they are coming home to America. And it’s all thanks to the efforts of President Trump.
Bell, Hill, and Riley participated in a game against Georgia Tech in Hangzhou, China last week. But instead of heading home to California with their team, the UCLA players were busy contemplating ten years in prison.
The trio found themselves in hot water after visiting a local mall. A person with firsthand knowledge of the investigation, confirmed there was surveillance video of the players shoplifting from three stores inside an upscale shopping center next to their hotel.
Fortunately, in a rarely seen move, Chinese courts granted the players bail. However, they had to remain in the country indefinitely. LiAngelo’s father, LaVar Ball, stayed behind with the boys while they awaited an indictment. That wait, ended this week.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the freshmen were spotted checking-in for a flight in Shanghai. Their freedom came just hours after President Trump confirmed he had spoken to President Xi about the situation.
“I had a great conversation with President Xi,” Trump told reporters on Air Force One on his way back from a 12-day Asia trip. “He was terrific, and they’re working on it right now, and hopefully everything is going to work out.”
Additionally, acknowledging the players wrongdoing, President Trump suggested they would be lucky to go home. “What they did was unfortunate,” said the president. “You know, you’re talking about very long prison sentences. They do not play games.”
A President for All Americans
Hopefully, the Ball family will appreciate the gift. Otto Warmbier’s parents weren’t so lucky. After being left in a North Korea prison by the Obama administration, the American student was released in June. Sadly, his injuries were so bad that Otto died a few weeks later.
This marks the second-time in less than a year, President Trump has negotiated the release of American citizens detained abroad. In April, Aya Hijazi and her husband Mohamed Hassenein, along with four other humanitarian workers, were freed by Egypt.
Not bad for a man that leftists call an, “Islamaphobic, misogynistic, racist.”