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7 arrested in drug trafficking investigation in Utah and Salt Lake counties

Feb 5, 2023, 8:05 PM

Handcuffs in a jail cell. (Ravell Call/Deseret News)...

Handcuffs in a jail cell. (Ravell Call/Deseret News)

(Ravell Call/Deseret News)

LEHI, Utah — A six-month investigation into a drug trafficking organization culminated Thursday with members of the Utah County Major Crimes Task Force serving four search warrants simultaneously in Salt Lake and Utah counties, resulting in multiple arrests and the seizure of several pounds of drugs.

“Through our investigation, detectives identified several individuals involved in the distribution of high quantities of illicit controlled substances, primarily methamphetamine, and heroin,” a police booking affidavit states. “Based on the information found by detectives through our investigation, we sought search warrants on four different residential locations which included several people and several vehicles to be searched.”

Law enforcers serving those warrants “located substantial amounts of controlled substances including multiple pounds of methamphetamine and heroin,” and also noted that while writing their booking affidavits, “detectives were still locating substantial amounts of methamphetamine and heroin.”

Teresa Price, 56, of Lehi, was the main focus of the investigation, according to law enforcers.

“She was identified through our investigation as the (organization’s) main runner, or drug delivery driver,” the affidavit states.

Price lives with 44-year-old Karina Suzanne Rehiig. Both women were arrested for investigation of engaging in a pattern of unlawful activity, six counts of drug possession with intent to distribute, possession of a gun by a restricted person and possession of drug paraphernalia. Five others were also arrested for investigation of lesser drug-related charges.

In addition to meth, heroin and cocaine, police also seized THC cartridges, fentanyl pills and approximately $25,000 in cash.

“Due to the high amount of illegal controlled substances seized in this case and this group being identified as a drug trafficking organization, detectives have been in contact with federal prosecutors. Federal prosecutors have begun the process of federal indictments due to the criminal organization’s practices and the amount of illicit substances seized,” the affidavit states.

Price was previously convicted in federal court of drug distribution in 2003. She was sentenced in that case to just under 11 years in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release. Rehrig was also convicted in a separate case in federal court on drug distribution charges and was sentenced to ten years in prison.

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7 arrested in drug trafficking investigation in Utah and Salt Lake counties