Loaiza facing 10 years to life in prison if convicted.
Last month, former MLB pitcher Esteban Loaiza was was arrested in San Diego for allegedly transporting 40 pounds of drugs, including heroine and cocaine, according to ESPN. The 46-year old, who made over $43.7 million during his 14-season major league career, was charged with three felonies including possession of heroin and cocaine over 20 kilograms, possession of narcotics for sale, and possession and transportation of narcotics for sale.
According to TMZ Sports, Loaiza was dealing $500,000 in cocaine from a home nearby a preschool and he was arrested on February 9th as part of a drug-smuggling sting by the Border Crime Suppression Team. He has been jailed since his arrest, but was recently transported to Metropolitan Correctional Center in San Diego -- a federal facility primarily used to hold inmates awaiting trial, according to TMZ.
Loaiza, who is due back in court on March 12, is facing 10 years to life in prison, if convicted of the federal drug charges.
Loaiza was initially stopped by police during a traffic stop for a minor traffic violation -- but a search of his car led to the discovery of a "sophisticated aftermarket compartment used to conceal contraband."
Cops then got a warrant to search a home that Loaiza had been renting since early February -- located "steps away from an area preschool" -- and found roughly 20 kilograms of suspected cocaine.
Estimated street value -- $500,000
During his 14 seasons in the bigs, Loaiza played for eight different teams including the Pittsburgh Pirates, Texas Rangers, Toronto Blue Jays, Chicago White Sox, New York Yankees, Washington Nationals, Oakland Athletics and Los Angeles Dodgers. He was named an All-Star twice while playing for the White Sox and he ranks as the second-winningest pitcher from Mexico in MLB history, compiling a 126-114 during his career. He last pitched in 2008.