UCLA basketball players fly back to U.S. after shoplifting scandal in China

Trump personally asked Xi Jinping to help resolve case of UCLA basketball players arrested in China

LaVar Ball's oldest son, Lonzo, starred for the Bruins last season before being drafted No. 2 overall by the Los Angeles Lakers, and his highly touted youngest son, 16-year-old LaMelo, has already been ticketed to follow in his brothers' footsteps and play for UCLA.

UCLA freshmen LiAngelo Ball, Jalen Hill and Cody Riley were swarmed by reporters at Los Angeles International Airport as the trio returned to the US from China, where they were arrested for shoplifting. LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley, and Jalen Hill were accused of stealing sunglasses from a Louis Vuitton store.

Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said the incident involving the three students "has been resolved to the satisfaction of the Chinese authorities", AP reported.

The UCLA basketball freshmen were arrested November 7 morning local time in Hangzhou, China.

Trump told reporters Tuesday that Xi had been helpful in working to resolve the case.

Tuesday evening saw the players making their way through a media scrum after landing at Los Angeles International Airport. The players did not respond to any questions and said nothing as they loaded onto a bus. You're talking about very long prison sentences.

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"Before I thank everybody who worked so incredibly hard helping us returning home safely, I want to thank the Chinese government and the police for taking care of us".

The effort was successful as the three players returned home late Tuesday afternoon, where they may be disciplined by the school as a result of the global scandal. "We are grateful for the role that our Chinese hosts played, and for the courtesy and professionalism of the local authorities".

UCLA says the school will launch its own investigation to decide whether or not to discipline the players, but a suspension of some sorts will probably be handed down if had to guess.

"I want to be clear that we take seriously any violations of the law", he said.

UCLA athletic director Dan Guerrero confirmed Ball, Riley and Hill stole merchandise from three different stores, per Bonagura.

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