Skip to main content
April 2, 2024Salt Lake City, UT, United StatesNarcotics, Enforcement and Removal

ERO Salt Lake City arrests 9 noncitizens with drug-related convictions during nationwide law enforcement effort

SALT LAKE CITY — Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers in the Salt Lake City area of operations covering Utah, Nevada, Montana and Idaho apprehended nine unlawfully present noncitizens who have been convicted of drug trafficking or multiple drug possession-related offenses involving methamphetamine, fentanyl, cocaine, heroin or synthetic drugs during a nationwide law enforcement effort that ran from March 11 through March 26.

“Drugs bring crime to our communities and the last two weeks our officers focused on taking the more egregious criminals off the streets, and now the United States, to keep our communities safe,” said ERO Salt Lake City Field Office Director Michael Bernacke. “Don’t distribute drugs here, you will be caught, arrested and removed.”

"With more than 105,000 drug overdoses reported throughout the United States last year, the trafficking and proliferation of dangerous illegal drugs has shown its devastating impacts throughout our neighborhoods and schools," said ERO Deputy Executive Associate Director Russ Hott. "Enforcement and Removal Operations personnel will continue to fight for the safety of our communities through the arrest and removal of those individuals who traffic drugs and exacerbate this terrible crisis."

Today's announcement follows a nationwide enforcement effort in February where 275 individuals presenting threats to public safety were arrested. By using an intelligence-driven enforcement model, ERO makes efficient use of limited resources to promote public safety in communities across the United States.

Those arrested include:

  • A 53-year-old citizen of Mexico in Jerome, Idaho. The 4th Judicial District Court in Boise, Idaho, convicted this noncitizen of trafficking in cocaine and they will remain in ERO custody pending removal proceedings.
  • A 39-year-old citizen of Mexico in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Eighth Judicial District Court in Clark County, Nevada, convicted this noncitizen of felony trafficking in controlled substance, methamphetamine and they will remain in ERO custody pending removal proceedings.
  • A 39-year-old citizen of Mexico in Tooele, Utah. The Fourth District Court in Fillmore, Nephi County, Utah, convicted this noncitizen of felony possession with intent to distribute a controlled/counterfeit substance and they will remain in ERO custody pending removal to Mexico.

ICE focuses on arresting noncitizens who have committed crimes and other individuals who have violated our nation's immigration laws. ICE officers, informed by their experience and training, use their inherent discretion as law enforcement officials to focus enforcement resources on those who pose a threat to national security, public safety or border security. These efforts include noncitizens with final orders of removal. Cases amenable to federal criminal prosecution may be presented to the appropriate U.S. attorney's office.

In fiscal year 2023, ERO arrested 73,822 noncitizens with criminal histories; this group had 290,178 associated charges and convictions with an average of four per individual. These included 33,209 assaults; 4,390 sex and sexual assaults; 7,520 weapons offenses; 1,713 charges or convictions for homicide; and 1,655 kidnapping offenses.

Members of the public can report crimes and suspicious activity by dialing 866-347-2423 or completing the online tip form. Learn more about ICE’s mission to increase public safety in your community on X, formerly known as Twitter, at @EROSaltLakeCity.