WEST VALLEY CITY — Salt Lake area police busted what appears to be a major drug ring with ties to Mexico. Fourteen people face charges.
According to charging documents, the DEA Metro Narcotics Task Force conducted surveillance on an ongoing drug distribution network for months.
Agents said they observed the leaders buying, selling and distributing heroine and cocaine. Some of the drugs arrived in West Valley City in duffel bags via bus from Mexico, they said.
The documents accuse the suspects of sending the proceeds of their drug sales back to Mexico, using fake names on money transfers, and wiring amounts just under $1,000 so as not to trigger higher reporting requirements.
The meeting places were around the Salt Lake Valley, police said. Three of the alleged ring leaders were arrested last week near 5300 West and Stony Brook Circle in Kearns.
The court papers outline seven felony charges including drug possession, distribution, and money laundering.
- Jorge Manuel Perez aka Ernest Lira-Quintero aka Hector Perez aka "Choki"
- Ernesto A. Langarcia-Arellano aka Humberto Perez-Estrada aka Uriel Mendoza Mendecino aka Roberto Montes aka "Gallo"
- Amayrani Reyes-Flores
- Jorge E. Castillo-Arellano aka "Chino"
- Geraldo Felix Tapia aka "Gordo"
- Blaz Miguel Lopez-Limon
- Carlos Abraham Montes Garcia
- Ludwin Robles Bermudez
- Maria Guadalupe Morales aka Lupe
- Courtney Cook
- Stephanie Nadee Pedersen
- Milo Durfee
- Daniel Strang
- Ernesto Maonri Pena