UCLA officials said Tuesday the university is cooperating with law enforcement officials in China, where members of the men’s basketball team were involved in an unspecified police investigation, possibly for shoplifting.
ESPN, citing unnamed sources, reported that three UCLA players were arrested on suspicion of shoplifting from a Louis Vuitton store next to the team’s hotel. According to ESPN, one of the players involved is LiAngelo Ball, younger brother of former Bruin and current Los Angeles Laker Lonzo Ball.
The UCLA team is in China preparing for its Friday season opener against Georgia Tech in Shanghai.
“We are aware of a situation involving UCLA student-athletes in Hangzhou, China,” according to a statement from UCLA Athletics. “The university is cooperating fully with local authorities on this matter, and we have no further comment at this time.”
The Atlanta Journal Constitution reported that Chinese authorities responded Tuesday morning to the hotel where UCLA and Georgia Tech players were staying in Hangzhou. Georgia Tech issued a statement saying three of its players were questioned by authorities but cleared of any wrongdoing.
According to ESPN, the UCLA players arrested were Ball and fellow freshmen Cody Riley and Jalen Hill.
“We are very disappointed by any situation that detracts from the positive student-athlete educational and cultural experience that this week is about,” Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said.
“Whether in the United States or abroad, we expect our student-athletes to uphold the highest standards.”
–City News Service
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