St. George man takes plea deal in drug trafficking case, gets 150 month sentence

Richard D. Barraza. Photo: Washington County

ST. GEORGE, Utah, Feb. 23, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — A 24-year-old St. George man has accepted a plea deal and sentenced to spend 12.5 years in a drug trafficking case.

Richard Dimitri Barraza has agreed to serve 150 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to possessing heroin with the intent to distribute and possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, says a statement released Tuesday by the Department of Justice, Utah District.

“According to the plea agreement, Barraza admitted to possessing approximately 160
grams of a mixture or substance containing heroin, along with a 9mm pistol that he used to
further his heroin trafficking enterprise,” the statement says.

Because Barraza was on supervised release for a 2017 federal conviction for being a felon in possession of a firearm, this plea also resolves the outstanding supervised release violation pending against him.

“Southwest Utah needs federal law enforcement because of cases like this one,” said
United States Attorney John W. Huber, in a prepared statement. “We are committed to focusing on dangerous offenders who drag down our quality of life through reckless decisions.”

Assistant U.S. Attorneys in the Utah U.S. Attorney’s Office prosecuted the case. Agents
from the Washington County Drug Task Force, Officers from the St. George Police Department, and Special Agents from the DEA conducted the investigation. The U.S. Attorney’s Office coordinated the prosecution with the Washington County Attorney’s Office.


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