SAN DIEGO–Former Major League Baseball player and All Star Esteban Antonio Loaiza was arrested by Sheriff’s Border Crimes Suppression Team for possession of narcotics.
During surveillance related to that investigation, Loaiza was seen driving a vehicle believed to be involved in the smuggling of narcotics. Loaiza was contacted during a traffic stop for a minor traffic infraction after leaving a home in Imperial Beach. A search of the vehicle led to the discovery of a sophisticated aftermarket compartment used to conceal contraband.
Based on evidence obtained during the traffic stop a search warrant was issued for the Imperial Beach home which had been leased by Loaiza in early February. The home was just steps away from an area preschool. The search of the home led to the discovery of 20 kilograms of suspected cocaine which had an estimated value of about $500,000.
Loaiza was booked into San Diego County Jail for possession of cocaine, sale, and transportation of drug. His bail was set at $200,000.
The famed player pitched for several baseball teams including New York Yankees, Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Oakland A’s. He was married to singer Jenni Rivera who tragically died in 2012 in a plane crash.