Sport Ex-All-Star pitcher Esteban Loaiza denies dealing cocaine

03:56  15 february  2018
03:56  15 february  2018 Source:   Associated Press

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Home » National News » Ex - pitcher Esteban Loaiza to… Former All - Star pitcher Loaiza - who earned a total of more than million over 14 seasons - is heading to court accused of drug dealing involving 20 kilograms (44 pounds) of suspected cocaine .

Ex - All Star pitcher Esteban Loaiza denies allegations of dealing 44 pounds of cocaine . 21, 2007 file photo, Los Angeles Dodgers' Esteban Loaiza , of Mexico, throws a pitch against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the first inning of a baseball game in Phoenix.

FILE - In this Sept. 21, 2007 file photo, Los Angeles Dodgers' Esteban Loaiza, of Mexico, throws a pitch against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the first inning of a baseball game in Phoenix. Former All-Star pitcher Loaiza - who earned a total of more than $43 million over 14 seasons - is heading to court accused of drug dealing involving 20 kilograms (44 pounds) of suspected cocaine. The 46-year-old retired Major League Baseball player is scheduled to appear in court in Chula Vista, Calif., south of San Diego, on Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)© The Associated Press FILE - In this Sept. 21, 2007 file photo, Los Angeles Dodgers' Esteban Loaiza, of Mexico, throws a pitch against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the first inning of a baseball game in Phoenix. Former All-Star pitcher Loaiza - who earned a total of more than $43 million over 14 seasons - is heading to court accused of drug dealing involving 20 kilograms (44 pounds) of suspected cocaine. The 46-year-old retired Major League Baseball player is scheduled to appear in court in Chula Vista, Calif., south of San Diego, on Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

CHULA VISTA, California — Former All-Star pitcher Esteban Loaiza, who earned more than $43 million over 14 seasons, denied allegations Wednesday that he is a cocaine dealer.

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Former MLB pitcher Esteban Loaiza denies smuggling, dealing cocaine . Defense attorney Janice Deaton agreed to the terms, though it was unclear if the ex - pitcher would post bail. Loaiza 's relatives and Deaton left the courtroom without speaking to reporters.

Former All - Star pitcher Loaiza - who earned a total of more than million over 14 seasons - is heading to court accused of drug dealing involving 20 kilograms (44 pounds) of suspected cocaine .

The former Major League Baseball player appeared in San Diego County Superior Court in Chula Vista, California. The tall, thin ballplayer wearing a khaki jail uniform looked at his father and other family members before entering his not guilty plea.

Prosecutors charged Loaiza, 46, with possession and transportation for sale of more than 10 kilograms (22 pounds) of cocaine, a cocaine base or heroin, and using a false compartment to smuggle drugs.

The specification of more than 10 kilograms could draw a stiffer penalty as could the allegation that the drugs were being stored at a townhome he leased that was within a 1,000 feet from an elementary school.

Loaiza would face up to 20 years and eight months in prison if convicted. The judge raised his bail to $250,000 after prosecutors argued the Mexican pitcher poses a flight risk. Defense attorney Janice Deaton agreed to the terms, though it was unclear if the ex-pitcher would post bail. Deaton and Loaiza's relatives left the courtroom without speaking to reporters.

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CHULA VISTA, California (AP) — Former All - Star pitcher Esteban Loaiza , who earned more than million over 14 seasons, denied allegations Wednesday that he is a cocaine dealer . The former Major League Baseball player appeared in San Diego County Superior Court in Chula Vista, California.

SAN DIEGO — Former All - Star pitcher Esteban Loaiza , who earned more than million over 14 seasons, is accused of drug dealing involving 44 pounds (20 kilograms) of suspected cocaine . The 46-year-old former Major League Baseball player is scheduled to be arraigned in court in Chula Vista

Loaiza was arrested Friday on suspicion of drug smuggling after San Diego County sheriff's officers who pulled over the Mercedes Benz he was driving for a traffic violation found a "sophisticated" compartment used to hide contraband at the back of the vehicle, according to investigators.

Later they obtained a search warrant for the home he rented in the beach community of Imperial Beach, where officials say packages were found containing a white powder believed to be cocaine and that weighed a total of 44 pounds (20 kilograms). The charges Loaiza pleaded to Wednesday in court in Chula Vista, California, are for any amount over 10 kilograms, prosecutors said.

Loaiza played for numerous teams between 1995 and 2008, included stints with the Pittsburgh Pirates, the New York Yankees, the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Chicago White Sox. He had a 21-9 record with the Chicago White Sox in 2003 and started in the All-Star Game that year.

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Former All - Star pitcher Loaiza - who earned a total of more than million over 14 seasons - is heading to court accused of drug dealing involving 20 kilograms (44 pounds) of suspected cocaine .

SAN DIEGO — Former All - Star pitcher Esteban Loaiza , who earned more than million over 14 seasons, is accused of drug dealing involving 44 pounds of suspected cocaine .

Investigators have said the arrest was part of an on-going narcotics probe but have given few details about how a successful baseball star became linked to a case involving the transport and sale of drugs with an estimated value of $500,000.

Criminal defense attorney, David Shapiro, who has handled numerous drug cases in San Diego but is not representing Loaiza, said this one is unique because of his fame as one of Mexico's most successful pitchers.

"At the very least what it shows is how Mexico's drug culture is infiltrating every aspect of life, whether he was associated with people doing it or doing it himself," he said.

Born in Tijuana, the Mexican city across the border from San Diego, Loaiza became a celebrity in his native country after marrying the late Mexican-American singer Jenni Rivera. The "Diva de la Banda" was considered to be the most successful female singer in grupero, a male-dominated Mexico regional style, selling more than 15 million records, and acting in reality television before she was killed in a plane crash in 2012.

She filed for divorce shortly before her death, ending their two-year marriage.

Agent John Boggs, who represented Loaiza during his Major League Baseball career, said he had not seen him in more than a year but that he had heard he was involved in a business selling Mexican-made hats.

"I love Esteban," Boggs told the San Diego Union-Tribune. "He's a great guy with a big heart — again, I don't know what or why he'd be involved in this. I have no idea. He's a friend, and I'm sorry as heck to see what's going on."

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