Strike force allegedly recovers more than $25,000 of narcotics during raid of motel room

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ST. GEORGE — Two are in custody in Millard County after a months-long investigation by the West Central Strike Force and the sheriff’s office yielded more than $25,000 in narcotics recovered during a search of a motel room in Fillmore last week.

On the evening of June 1, detectives with the West Central Strike Force and the Millard County Sheriff’s Office responded to a motel in Fillmore City with a search warrant obtained as part of a two-month investigation by both agencies into the distribution of illegal narcotics taking place in the community, according to a statement released by the Millard County Sheriff’s Office. 

During a search of the room, a “large” amount of drugs was seized, including 46 grams of heroin, nearly five ounces of methamphetamine, crack cocaine, LSD, psilocybin mushrooms, marijuana, marijuana concentrate and paraphernalia that officers located and recovered from inside the room.

Detectives also seized numerous large and small plastic baggies and a set of digital scales that had residue from what appeared to be illegal narcotics, along with cash believed to be the proceeds from illicit drug sales.

Authorities also have reason to believe the drugs seized during the operation were “destined for the Millard County area.”

The room’s occupants, Jeffrey Chandara, 33, and 20-year-old Victoria Ferraro, were arrested and booked into the Millard County Jail facing five second-degree felony distribution of a controlled substance charges each.

Once at the jail, more than two grams of heroin were allegedly located on Chandar’s person during a search by corrections staff in the middle of the booking process.

The following day, the Millard County Attorney’s Office filed five second-degree felony charges against each defendant. Chandara faces four counts of distribution of a controlled substance and one count of possession of a controlled substance within a correctional facility. He also faces one third-degree felony drug possession charge. 

Ferraro faces five counts of distribution of a controlled substance and a third-degree felony count of the same charge. Both suspects also face misdemeanor paraphernalia charges as well. 

The total street value of the drugs seized is more than $25,000, according to information obtained from the National Drug Intelligence Center.

According to authorities, the investigation that led to the arrests was part of a coordinated effort between participating agencies that make up the West Central Strike Force, a collaboration that allows multiple agencies to share information and intelligence during an investigation.

Moreover, instead of merely “interdicting the activity of individuals,” the agencies actively seek ways to encourage alternative choices and behaviors that don’t involve substances, in addition to providing direct assistance to those caught in the struggle of substance abuse. 

The statement also emphasized the importance of disrupting and dismantling the level of organization involving the distribution of narcotics, as was believed to be the case with the arrest last week, which is “only one component of an overall approach to a healthier drug-free community,” the statement said. 

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

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