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Couple charged with distributing heroin, meth in Salt Lake, Utah counties

By Pat Reavy, KSL | Posted - Jun. 29, 2020 at 4:39 p.m.



SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah County couple faces criminal charges accusing them of working with a drug trafficking organization in distributing drugs throughout Salt Lake and Utah counties.

Jeremy Farrell, 31, of Orem, was charged Monday in 4th District Court with nine counts of drug distribution and drug possession with intent to distribute, first-degree felonies; five counts of money laundering, a second-degree felony; and possession of drug paraphernalia, a class B misdemeanor,

Emily Jean White, 41, of Lehi, was charged with three counts of drug distribution, a first-degree felony; obstructing justice, a second-degree felony; and possession of drug paraphernalia, a class B misdemeanor.

Farrell and White had been under investigation by the Utah County Major Crimes Task Force since May.

“As part of that investigation, officers obtained a warrant for a wiretap. While monitoring the wire, officers were made aware that defendants Farrell and White were selling heroin and methamphetamine in both Salt Lake and Utah counties,” according to charging documents.

Farrell was selling approximately $14,000 worth of heroin a week, the charges state.

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White had agreed in December to become an informant for the task force, but instead told Farrell he was being investigated, according to the charges.

Both Farrell and White “were also working in concert with a Mexican drug trafficking organization to resupply themselves with distributable amounts of heroin/methamphetamine,” the charges state.

Six members of that group were charged June 2 in 4th District Court with a combined 10 counts of drug distribution, two counts of drug possession with intent to distribute, five counts of money laundering, and engaging in a continued criminal enterprise, all first-degree felonies; obstructing justice and two counts of being a restricted person in possession of a weapon, a second-degree felony; and failing to stop for law enforcement, a class A misdemeanor.

Israel Leyva-Arista, 33, of West Jordan, was considered the leader of the group and had at least five adults and two juveniles working for him, according to charging documents.

On May 29 police served a search warrant on Leyva-Arista’s home and seized nearly 5 pounds of meth, 13 pounds of heroin and more than $45,000 cash, charging documents state.

“Israel told officers that they were selling about $7,000-$9,000 worth of narcotics per day,” the charges state.

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