Esteban Loaiza-Drug Charges

Esteban Loaiza-Drug Charges

Esteban Loaiza-Drug Charges

Former MLB pitcher Esteban Loaiza will be in Chula Vista court Wednesday to face drug smuggling charges after San Diego County Sheriff's deputies said they found cocaine in his auto.

Loaiza, a former All-Star pitcher who suited up for the Chicago White Sox and New York Yankees, among others, was arrested Friday for allegedly possessing 44 pounds of suspected cocaine.

The judge set Loaiza's bail at $250,000 after prosecutors argued that he's a flight risk.

The former pitcher was stopped for a minor traffic infraction.

Authorities then obtained a search warrant for his home, where they reportedly found packages of a white powder officials believed to be cocaine. "I don't know how he would get himself involved in this, so it's hard to even comment on it". He was the American League's starting pitcher in the All-Star Game that year.

John Boggs told The San Francisco Chronicle on Monday that he had no information about Friday's arrest and that he has not spoken to Loaiza recently. Depties say Loaiza leased the home in early February.

Vickery said when deputies searched the auto, they noticed a "sophisticated aftermarket" hidden compartment in his vehicle believed used to hide contraband. Authorities had the vehicle under surveillance on suspicion it was used for smuggling drugs.

The San Diego Sheriff's Department valued the narcotics at more than $500,000. He was married to singer Jenni Rivera but the couple filed for divorce in October 2012.

Loaiza, who was born in Tijuana and attended Mar Vista High School in Imperial Beach, pitched for 14 seasons for nine major league teams, racking up a 126-114 record.

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