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Detained UCLA basketball players heading home from China

15 November 2017

Three UCLA basketball players held in China for a week are on their way back to Los Angeles, according to the L.A. Times.

They did not fly home with the team, and ESPN has reported that authorities have surveillance footage and that the players could be required to remain in Hangzhou for a week or two.

Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said early Tuesday that the Bruins players, detained November 7, are on a plane bound for Los Angeles, adding that the "matter has been resolved to the satisfaction of the Chinese authorities".

UCLA beat Georgia Tech 63-60 without the three freshmen.

Besides coinciding with Trump's visit, the case drew attention in the United States due to the involvement of Ball, one of three high-profile basketball-playing sons of LaVar Ball.

The Washington Post broke the news on Monday that Trump, while on a trip in Asia, personally asked Chinese President Xi Jinping to help resolve the situation. "They [the Chinese authorities] do not play games".

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Ball's father, LaVar, said in a statement on social media that the process could take months.

"What they did was unfortunate", Trump said.

The players were released on bail last Wednesday and have been staying at hotel in Hangzhou, awaiting a decision from authorities that could range from release to fines to years of detainment.

The U.S. official indicated that the players' charges have been reduced and the case is being resolved.

The family is now filming a reality show called "Ball in the Family" and recently started an athletic apparel company, Big Baller Brand, "inspired by the Ball brothers".

A USA official who spoke on the condition of anonymity told The Post that Xi promised to look into the case and ensure that the players be treated fairly and expeditiously, adding that the charges against the three players have been reduced and that the case is moving toward a resolution.

Detained UCLA basketball players heading home from China