PORT HURON (WWJ/AP) – Former Detroit Tiger’s great Denny McLain is again fighting to clear his name.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officers arrested McLain on Thursday at the Blue Water Bridge on an outstanding warrant issued by the St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office in Louisiana.
According to officials, a disoriented McLain was arrested when he and inadvertently left the United States.
“That was not his intent. He got lost in the construction over there, he and the other party in the car, and they end up on the bridge,” said Chief Customs and Border Protection officer Ron Smith.
Smith said McLain explained at the toll booth that he had not meant to go to Canada.
“Then when they turned around, that meant they had to go through the Customs inspection area, and so our officers were talking to them and as a part of it we ran his name, and an arrest warrant out of Louisiana popped up,” Smith said.
Captain Patrick Yoes of St. Charles Parish Louisiana explained that the fugitive fraud warrant, issued on August 26, stemmed from a business deal.
“After Mr. McLain, along with workers of his company, American KIE Steel & Commodities, approached two land owners in the Bayou Gauche Louisiana-area offering to purchase scrap metal the landowners had on their property,” said Yoes. “The agreement was that once the scrap metal was weighed at a salvage yard, the land owners would be paid a specific amount of money.”
Yoes said McLain never paid in full.
He was arrested without incident and turned over to the Port Huron Police.
McLain’s attorney, Josh Fahlsing, said his client was on his way to the Cracker Barrel and had no idea there was a warrant out for his arrest.
He was released on a $10,000 bond ahead of an extradition hearing set for October 4.
“In the meantime, we are going to see what we can do to try to clear these charges up with the authorities in Louisiana,” Fahlsing said.
Once one of the most feared pitchers in baseball, McLain has had repeated run-ins with the legal system after leaving baseball. He was convicted in 1996 of stealing money from a pension fund. He was arrested in 2008 in Livingston County, northwest of Detroit, for missing an earlier court hearing on a civil case.
McLain won the 1968 American League Most Valuable Player and Cy Young awards after winning 31 games and leading Detroit to the World Series.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.