“It ain’t that big a deal.”

So said the father of one of the UCLA basketball players detained in China for stealing sunglasses from a Louis Vuitton shop while on a week-long educational and Pac12 cultural exchange trip.

The three freshman players, Cody Riley, Jalen Hill and LiAngelo Ball were arrested in Beijing and faced harsh sentences of anywhere from three to ten years in prison for the crime.

And while Ball’s father took a cavalier attitude, telling the press, “He’ll be fine. Everyone’s making it a big deal. It ain’t that big a deal,” an unnamed source at ESPN was not so optimistic.

“The Chinese authorities weren’t messing around. The kids were scared.”

It turns out, it was a big deal.

That assessment was echoed by William Nee, an expert with Amnesty International specializing in the Chinese legal system. “I would say they could be in quite a bit of trouble if they have solid proof that they shoplifted.”

But instead of spending years in a Chinese prison, the players are back in the U.S.A. with only two people to thank for their freedom – President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

President Trump, in the midst of a 12-day, 5-country visit to Asia, took up the players’ cause and asked Xi Jinping to show leniency as a personal favor and luckily for the young men, the Chinese president granted Trump’s request.

Speaking to reporters on board Air Force One returning to the U.S., Trump explained how the players’ release was secured.

“... I will tell you, when I heard about it two days ago, I had a great conversation with President Xi. What they did was unfortunate. You know, you’re talking about very long prison sentences. They do not play games.”

Trump continued, “He was terrific, and they’re working on it right now. And hopefully, everything is going to work out.”

President Trump succeeded and the players, back home on American soil, read statements that included expressions of gratitude to the president.

The incident showcased the president’s diplomatic skills, which may explain why the mainstream media pulled a complete blackout on the entire matter.

They were too busy spinning a fake story about Trump “killing” koi fish at a photo op with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to cover a real diplomatic coup that took place while they were looking for ways to portray the president in a bad light.

Did the mainstream media cover President Trump's trip to Asia fairly or purposely ignore his successful diplomatic skill in dealing not only with the college basketball players who had been detained for shoplifting, but on matters of trade and North Korea?

Source: Daily Caller

 
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