Friday, August 22, 2008

This story isn't true.

BIEJING (AP)-- Police raided the hotel room of American basketball player Carmelo Anthony on Saturday, taking the Denver Nuggets forward into custody after seizing over one pound of marijuana. Anthony was charged with one count of possessing contraband and one count of defacing the national honor of the Chinese people. While Chinese officials would confirm that Anthony is in police custody, they declined to say where he was being held.

"Beijing police have trailed the suspect since his arrival in China twelve days ago," said Chinese government spokesman Zhang Yang. "He was observed transporting illegal drugs into China, consuming those drugs and conspiring to bring discredit on the Chinese people."

U.S. Olympic Committee spokesman Peter Grimaldi claimed the arrest was made in retaliation to the American charges that Chinese gymnasts have been underage. The USOC pressured the International Olympic Committee to investigate the age of He Kexin on Monday, after the Associated Press obtained documents indicating that the gymnast was 13 years old, three years under the mandatory cutoff of 16. Grimaldi claims that Anthony's arrest was retribution.

"Everybody knows those girls are underage," said Grimaldi. "Everybody knows that NBA players smoke weed. We pointed out something obvious, so they pointed out something obvious. It's that simple."

Anthony had just returned to the room following the Americans' 101-81 victory over Argentina earlier Saturday when police burst in, arresting the basketball player and several members of his entourage. Police also seized several items considered marijuana paraphernalia in China, including incense, rolling papers, a glass pipe and the Dutch Masters cigars.

Anthony's lawyer, Mark Wittenstein, said his client was simply following his normal postgame routine. The Americans advanced to the gold medal game against Spain with the victory.

"Mr. Anthony was just doing what every NBA player does after a win," Wittenstein said. "He was getting blunted before going out to get his Goose on. Where's the harm in that?"

A State Department spokesperson declined to comment on this story.

No comments: